Alexa wrote:Hey PartySarah,
I'm sorry you're missing that intimacy! You definitely deserve the space for a fulfilling sex life.
How do you feel about being creative about where you have space (e.g. at your sex interest's home, a hotel, a car!, etc.)? Also important -- how and when do you feel you'll be able to talk to your child about your dating life? I respect that you don't want your child to be attached to partners who may not be long term, but I don't think that means you have to miss out on dating entirely until they are an adult and moved out of the house. Are those conversations you imagine having with your kid one day?
Sam W wrote:Hi PartySarah,
It's awesome that you're starting to think about how to have these conversations; believe it or not, some people really go out of their way to avoid being honest with their kids about these topics.
I think you may be able to explain the dating aspect to your daughter sooner than twelve. It might not be as complex a conversation as you'd have with an older child, but if you end up with a partner who you want to bring home, there are ways of helping her understand that's not her dad. If you're not familiar with them already, I would check out some of Robie Harris's books; she has ones that cover explaining sex and bodies to younger children, as well as ones that talk about different types of relationships and ways families can look. Those could give you some ideas on how to explain dating to her in a way she'll understand. And, when she's a little older, "Wait, What?" by our own Heather Corinna can help with those topics.
Too, since you're feeling like casual encounters are what you have the bandwidth for, it sounds like getting creative with where you have sex is a good call. In that case, explaining things too her may involve more helping her understand that mom will be gone for a while that night. Is she already used to having a babysitter come and you go out to do something? Or would that be a pretty new thing for her?
Mo wrote:Hi there PartySarah,
I don't have clear answers for all of your questions, but I wonder if there are other parents in your area that you know who might be able to give you some tips or recommendations for child care; do you know anyone you could ask about that? In terms of getting your child used to having a babysitter, what may help is starting with something small, like hiring someone to watch her for a couple hours while you run some errands or have quiet time on your own. It might feel like a lot to go from never having had a babysitter before to having a sitter stay long enough to put her to bed, so taking smaller steps to help your child get used to the situation could make it easier when you do start having longer dates.
In terms of what to tell her when you are dating, I think you could say something like "I'm getting dinner/spending time with a friend" and that would be just fine.
As far as the best protection goes, we certainly recommend condoms and other barrier methods for casual sex; some people feel comfortable with just condoms as a birth control method but others would rather add in another method as well. Do you need any information either on condom/barrier use or on birth control options?
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