As if dating weren’t difficult enough to begin with, adding children to the mix can really complicate things. When dating as a single parent, you don’t necessarily need to be more cautious about who you date, just about who you decide you want to carry on a serious relationship with. Following are some areas in which you should investigate before taking a relationship to the next level when children are involved:

Employment History

When thinking about making this relationship that you are in a serious one, you want to make sure that this person is capable of meshing well with your readymade family. You do not want to dive into a meaningful union with someone who has a spotty work history. This will not help to keep your family going in the manner in which they are used to.

Criminal History

Performing a background check on your significant other may seem a little over the top to many, however you do want to make sure that this person is a safe person for your children to be around. Think about when you take your children to daycare, school, or even church. You wouldn’t leave your children alone with the adults if there weren’t a background check performed.

Financial Position

You, as a single parent, have worked hard at securing your family’s financial position and the last thing you want is to bring someone in to the mix that will put a drain on you and your family financially. When accomplishing this, you may want to go as far as exchanging credit reports and bank statements so as to be on the same page.

Single Mom Dates

Odds and Ends

A few other things to consider before moving that relationship to the next level:

  • Do your children like the person you are in a serious relationship with? If not, chances are their feelings will not change, which will make for a painful experience.
  • Does the other person have children and do yours like them? Again, don’t expect those feelings to change if your kids don’t like their kids.
  • Parenting practices: if your significant other has vastly different parenting practices than you, there may be issue down the road. Relating differently to each other’s children could create contempt among the children due to being treated so differently under the same roof.

Finding the right person to be with takes time, effort, and extra work when you have children. Performing some of these pieces of investigation will help to set your mind at ease that there aren’t any underlying issues that may rear their nasty heads down the road. Be diligent and know that the right person will not have issue with you digging into their personal lives as they should know that you are doing it for the children.

Stephen Minton is a recently divorced freelance blogger for and strongly recommends seriously considering getting a Premarital Agreement before you make your vows. For more information have a look at the Forms.