When is the Best Time to Tell Your Date You Have Kids?

by Jo Middleton - September 3, 2015

Jo Middleton is an experienced internet dater and a mother of two. Think having kids might be a dealbreaker for your date? Jo thinks she has the answer.

Have you ever watched a film, where a couple are in the early stages of dating, and they’re out for dinner, and suddenly the woman looks awkward… “I have something to tell you,” she says. “What is it?” asks the guy, looking nervous and wondering what he’s done wrong this time, or if she’s going to tell him she’s an animal rights activist and he has to send back his steak. “I have a son,” she says.

Cue awkward moment where the guy wrestles with how enthusiastic he can be about it, without sounding like a weirdo. Either that or he gets annoyed, and she’s able to dump him, claiming the moral high ground – ‘he couldn’t handle it!’ she wails to her friend in the next scene – ‘just because I have a child!’

No, hang on a minute. Was it really because you have a child, or was it the fact that you went on nine dates with him, the whole while failing to tell him about this major part of your life? Isn’t that a bit cruel? Deceptive even?

Isn’t the whole basis of a relationship honesty and trust? More to the point, if you’re looking for a serious commitment, don’t you want your partner to be totally fine with you having children? If you don’t even tell them, right from the start, how are you going to filter out the serious contenders?

Internet dating has made the issue a whole lot simpler of course, so that now both men and women, (because this isn’t just an issue for mums), can quite literally filter out compatible potential mates. With an online dating profile, where the issue of whether or not you have children is reduced to a tick box activity, makes it almost a non issue – ‘OK, so he has kids, that’s fine, but hang on, he’s vegetarian, that will never do…’