Dating after divorce can be daunting.
After waking up to the same person for years, dating after a divorce may feel like a frightening task. All your friends are telling you to get back out there and date but it just feels… different. You might be thinking:
Can I trust another guy again?
It has been so long that I’ve gone on a date…
What if he’s scared away by the idea of dating someone who has been through a divorce??
Hold your horses.
Post-divorce dating is scary but do notlet your fears sabotage you from dating again. Part of you probably has not given up on the idea of love and marriage and you want to start dating again. Don’t worry, I have compiled a list of handy pointers to help you navigate the dating world after a divorce.
Don’t Rush Back Into Dating
This is probably the most important step in post-divorce dating.
Don’t for a bit.
Especially if you just got out of a long-term relationship. It is a bad idea to be dating so “soon”. You probably have some repressed traumas or emotional damage that you need to let heal first. You do not want to date to have someone fill a void in your life.
Imagine hearing the word “I love you” from another man other than your ex-husband so soon after a divorce.
If you do hop in a relationship right after a divorce, you might be far more invested in the relationship than you should be. You may idealizethe relationship rather than actually trying to connect and date another person. In short, it will blind you from actually finding a compatible partner and you may wind up getting hurt.
I know it varies by each person but the general consensus for when you should start dating again is when you are comfortable on your own and with your own life first–without needing anybody.
Slow Things Down
Let’s say you took some time off to be alone and you are ready to date again.
You go out to a nice dinner with a nice guy, and you are already obsessing over if there is enough chemistry to spend the rest of your lives together!
Whoa, whoa, whoa.
If you go out to on a date with a guy, focus on just having fun and getting to know the other person. That is it. Don’t treat the date as an interview for a life partner, just focus on enjoying your time together.
If you go into dating with the idea that you need to find someone you want to remarry, you’re going to wind up getting hurt. Your investment in the relationship does not match the substance of it.
At the end of the date, if you enjoyed it, set up a second date and go from there.
Use This Good Alternative to Dating App
You might be getting excited to hop back in the dating world. You start to download all the new dating apps, like OKCupid and Plenty of Fish, and start swiping away at the candidates searching for the perfect match.
These dating apps are great for quickly seeing people all over town, however in my experience, there is a better alternative available for meeting people.
Drum roll, please…
I would recommend you search up some meetup groups in your area with your hobbies, and start attending the gatherings. If you are just doing what you already love, and you meet someone who loves doing it too, chances are you will be pretty compatible.
I would avoid going to these events with the sole intention of meeting someone! Just know, in the back of your head, a side effect of doing what you already love to do, will increase the chances of you meeting a great partner.
Last but Not Least, Be Honest.
It is really important to be really, really honest with yourself about how you feel about the person you’re with, and why you are with them.
Just be honest on where you are at in life. Honesty is attractive. It is attractive if a person is honest and says, “You are my first date in a really long time, so I am really nervous.” If it is sincere, the other person will probably find your honesty really endearing.
A word of caution. You will need to hold off talking about your past relationship/ marriage if you have a lot of emotional vomit stored up that will spill out and scare away your date.
If this is the case, wait a bit until you are dating someone seriously for at least a month before you start talking about your past relationship.
About the Author
Brandon Leuangpaseuth is a writer from San Diego, CA that helps various law firms such as Bishop Law Offices, P.C.across the country with their public relations. You can connect with him on LinkedIn @ bleuangpaseuth