Dating can be tricky, especially when it comes to past "baggage," and by baggage I mean having children. When do you bring up the fact that you have a kid, and at what point do you introduce a romantic interest to that kid? I think it's safe to say the woman this redditor met for a first date got both those questions wrong.
A man reached out to Reddit recently to ask whether he was in the wrong for ditching a woman who showed up for their first date with another date in tow: her son, who he didn't know existed until that very moment.
Most single parents wait to introduce their kids to whoever they're romantically interested in until they think there's a real chance a long term relationship could result from it. But meeting them probably shouldn't be a surprise you spring on your date at your first meetup.
At least that's what college student and Redditor LiveDriver thought.
He ended up talking to a girl on Tinder for about a month that he thought was amazing. She's "beautiful, smart, and charismatic. She had a very nice body too..."
There was something he noticed on her stomach though, "a weird line down her abdomen" that he didn't think was appropriate to address, seeing as they've only been talking for a few weeks and exchanging photos on Snapchat.
The two of them had plans to finally meet up for a date at a local diner. Pretty cool, low stress environment. He arrived five minutes earlier than their agreed time so he could get a table (pro level move right there), but was confused when he saw a woman walk in that looked exactly like the woman he was chatting with for the past month.
There was one problem though, she walked in with a kid.
He was understandably confused, there was no possible way it could've been her. Then she approached him and started speaking:
"Jack?! Hey! It's Melissa" I kinda nervously said "hey.." in a confused way. At first, I figured maybe she was babysitting or this was her unmentioned brother and thought wow she really is into me for still keeping our date (I don't mind kids as I am an elementary education major). Nope."
Then she proceeds to introduce the child as her kid:
"She said 'This is Mike, he's my son!' I was shocked. I just looked at her and she said 'Yea, he's my bundle of joy. Had him at 18' I said 'Are you serious?' and she was like 'Yea!! But it's no big deal, if I put him on his iPad he wont make a fuss, and, by the way, sorry for never mentioning him! Sometimes things get hectic in my life.'"
Things. Get. Hectic.
Let's just forget the fact that she thought it was OK to bring her kid and just let him sit on a tablet the entire time she's on a date with a dude. How about the fact that she was texting someone for a month and never mentioned her kid.
It probably means one of two things: either she was intentionally keeping the fact she had a kid from her date, or that she honestly never thought to mention her "bundle of joy." Both are pretty bad.
Frazzled, the man didn't know how to react, so he just immediately extricated himself from the situation:
"I just stood up, looked at her and said 'I'm sorry, I don't think this will work out.' She was like '..oh, but I really like you' and I just said 'I'm sorry' and left."
His abrupt exit is all kinds of awkward and some would even say harsh, and he wanted to know if he was wrong for how he handled the situation.
"Now, part of me feels d***ish because I have never done that to a girl and try to hold respect for them, but I felt
- totally lied to
- betrayed (in a weird sense). I wanted to start my own family some day with a woman who hasn't had kids. Obviously if I was in my late 30s or 40s I would expect it, but I am just a college junior.... plus, I don't want to take on a 'father' responsibility should our relationship get serious over the next 2, 3 years"
The general consensus from the commenters in the Reddit thread were sympathetic to the dude, some of them were even single moms themselves who supported his decision. Dating as a single parent is tough, but you should probably inform people you see as potentially more than "a hookup" that there's another human life you're responsible for.
The majority of people were just shocked she would bring her child on a first date and felt sorry for the child being placed in such an awkward situation. Others pointed out that it can be damaging to young kids to introduce romantic partners to them before things are serious.
What do you think? Is he in the wrong for the way he handled things? Or did he have every right to end it right then and there?