Tarek El Moussa shares how he introduced his new girlfriend to his children

The "Flip or Flop" star shares a TV show, and custody of their two children, with his ex-wife.

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By Audrey Cook

Flip or Flop” star Tarek El Moussa gently introduced his new girlfriend to his two children by showing them pictures of her first.

The HGTV star has a budding romance with Netflix’s “Selling Sunset” star Heather Rae Young, following a highly publicized divorce last year. He shares a TV show with ex-wife Christina Anstead, as well as sharing custody of their two kids, Taylor, 9, and Brayden, 4.

In an exclusive interview with TODAY Parents, the professional real estate investor and father of two revealed how he talked to his kids about dating after divorce.

L-R, Christina Anstead, Tarek El Moussa and Heather Rae Young.Getty Images

“I started the conversation first with my daughter, Taylor, because she is older than my son, Brayden,” he said. “After going out with Heather Rae a few times, I started bringing her into my conversations with Taylor and would mention her little by little, sharing with her that I had met someone. I shared that just like Daddy, she is also on TV and in real estate. After getting the initial conversation started, I would also show the kids photos and videos of me and Heather Rae laughing, being silly and hanging out, and that made them laugh and be able to put a face to her name. I tried to make it fun which made for an easy in-person introduction later on.”

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Young is the first woman El Moussa introduced to his kids since his divorce last year.

“I wasn’t someone who was just dating a bunch of different women. I was waiting for the right one, who I thought would be right not only for me, but for my kids to meet. With Heather, I knew right away, and that was it.”

As for that all important first meeting, El Moussa decided to involve the whole family.

“We have family night every Wednesday evening at my house and she met my whole family and the kids all in the same night. Having the entire family there all at once made for a lot of interaction and helped keep it light and fun. It was a great night and everyone loved getting to know her.”

El Moussa credits the “introduction before the introduction” — showing photos and videos and sharing details about Young to the kids prior — with helping make it a smooth transition.

HGTV star Tarek El-Moussa, with girlfriend Heather Rae Young and his two children with ex-wife Christina Anstead, says when he thought about dating after divorce he thought about finding someone who would be right for his son and daughter.JJ Velasquez

“Taylor was comfortable with Heather Rae right away and Brayden is a lot more comfortable with her now, as well,” he shared, adding, “They play a lot and are building a nice bond together. It’s great!”

Prior to meeting Young, El Moussa was pressed by his daughter about when he would get a girlfriend. “She was definitely ready for it. She loves Daddy and all, but I think she wanted a little more in the household,” he said.

El Moussa and Young flew to Europe for Thanksgiving because he didn’t have the kids. However, the pair will spend the upcoming holidays back home with family.

“For Christmas Day, we’re excited to spend it together with the kids as a family. For the new year in January, I’m taking the whole family — the kids, Heather Rae, her parents, and my parents — on an annual ski trip getaway.”

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