She was pretty upset, and she was struggling with that. I just encouraged her to talk to him about it and I said, “Listen, I know that you and your brother are Dad’s top priority and if he doesn’t know how you feel, he can’t change his behavior.”I didn’t want to get involved unless I absolutely had to, so I just encouraged her to talk to him, which I guess they did and he’s been able to help her feel better about it. I’ll ask him how he feels about it and he’ll just go, “It’s fine, it’s cool.” He’s a pretty reserved kid.

He’s very social but he doesn’t talk very much about his feelings.

There was a time, too, where I think she felt a little displaced by the mom, because when he moved out into his first apartment, my daughter helped him. I think it was her way of dealing with it, like, “How can I help take care of Daddy?

There are times however when she doesn’t want to be spending time with her friend.

Sometimes she wants a little space and distance, and I’ve just always encouraged her to bring that up with him.

A few pointers from Michelle’s story would be to remember that you and your kids will need some time to adjust to the new situation. Your ex and his new partner may have been seeing each other for some time and have gotten used to being a couple.

If he’s only just introduced your kids to her, he shouldn’t just assume they’ll have an immediate comfort level even if they did already know her as a friend’s parent. If your ex gives you the opportunity, you can be supportive of him and suggest ways to ease the adjustment.

He could take a tip from Carlos and have a family game night.

Part of that adjustment (even if the new partner isn’t a friend’s parent) is emphasizing the continued importance of one-on-one time with the children without the new partner being around.

When your ex starts dating can often bring a flood of emotions especially if his new partner is a friend or former friend of yours and even worse if they were dating before you broke up.

What can also be a strange situation is when your ex starts dating the mother of one your child’s friends.

Are there any behavioral changes that indicate that he’s struggling or having a hard time? Other than trying to pry stuff out of him, that’s about all I can do.

One of the things I think is really helpful for a boy, too is that he hasn’t lost his dad.

He’s actually a lot like his dad, which was again was always one of my issues, he never would open up.