How to Handle Father’s Day When You’re Dating a Dad


With Father’s Day just around the corner, those of you who are dating a single Dad are probably wondering what your role should be (if any) when it comes to this holiday. Obviously this guy is a caring, emotionally invested provider – or else you wouldn’t be dating him! However, traditionally Father’s Day is designed for children to appreciate their Dads. In other words, the main focus of this day should be on the kids. So, how do you let the single dad you’re dating that you think he’s awesome without stepping on any feet? Easy – you follow these tips:

Let him take the lead.

This isn’t just your typical Sunday afternoon when you’re trying to come to a consensus on whether you’ll hit up the local farmers market or go for brunch with friends – the decision on how you’ll celebrate this day rests on him and his children. Let him decide how today is going to go and how much he wants to include you in the festivities. At the end of the day it’s all about the kids, so if you don’t have a close relationship with his child(ren) it’s important that you don’t take offense if he decides to spend the day alone with his little ones. If this is the case, remember that he’s trying to exclude you, he’s just trying to keep things from being confusing to the kids. Being understanding and flexible about the fact that this a day for him to spend with his kids will win you big points in his eyes.

Involve the kids.

However, if  he wants to include you in the Father’s Day activities – great! Just remember this mantra: “Take part, don’t control.” Want to also win big points with his kids? Make it all about them. Ask them for suggestions on things they could do to celebrate their dad. Whether that’s making him a card or cooking him breakfast in bed – make sure they’re involved in every step of the process.

Pick another day.

If he’s spending Father’s Day with his children, pick another day and plan a special date for the two of you. If you’ve just started dating, this is the perfect way to show him that you think he’s a great Dad and boyfriend. Single parents have responsibility of two parents, which can be really stressful. From my experience, doing something small that helps lessen the load is a great way to show that you care. For example, plan a night when you treat him to a home-cooked meal & enjoy a bottle of wine together. Not only is this romantic in a super low-key way, if he has young kids he’ll likely appreciate the change of menu from the usual parade of grilled cheese sandwiches and pizza. If you’re domestically challenged, treat him to dinner or buy him a set of tickets to his favorite sporting event/car show/comic book convention/Thai cooking class – whatever your guy is into.

You don’t have to plan anything elaborate, but any small gesture that says “Hey, I appreciate what you do & you deserve to be pampered” is sure to be appreciated!

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