Tips for Dating After a Divorce

Going through a divorce is a rough experience for everyone. Even when you know that divorce is the best option for you, or when you are getting out of a bad relationship, it can be stressful. It can also make you wary of getting back out into the dating pool. Everyone has a different view on how long they should wait before they start dating again. Choose a timetable that’s right for you.

Dating after a divorce can be many things. It can be fun and exciting, as it should be. Of course, it can also be nerve-wracking and overwhelming, particularly if you have not dated in a while. Typically, you will know when you are ready, or you might need some prodding from family members or friends that want to see you happy. When you are finally ready to get out into the dating world once more, be sure that you keep the following tips in mind.

Forgive Yourself

Going through a divorce can make people think differently of themselves. They might view their divorce as a failure and be extra hard on themselves. Even if the ex was not a good person and was the main cause for the divorce, you may still see yourself as part of the problem that broke down the marriage. In some cases, this might be true.

Regardless, you need to learn how to acknowledge whatever role you may have played and forgive yourself. This will help you feel better about your situation and who you are, and it is the first step that you should take when you are thinking about dating again. Acknowledging the problems that you had in the marriage that could have been your contribution will help you to not make those mistakes in the future.

Forgive Your Ex

This is difficult for many people to do, especially in cases where the ex was the main reason for the divorce. It could be due to infidelity, spending money frivolously, not getting a job and contributing, etc. Many people do not like their ex. The ex might use the parenting plan against you or try to pit your kids against you. Your ex might do any number of dastardly things, and it can be difficult to get to the point where you can forgive them. If you can’t find a way to honor your ex, you are doing a disservice to your kids.

It also means that even though your ex might be out of the picture, they are still on your mind because you loathe them. It’s hard to move forward in other relationships when you have their specter hanging over you.

Have Fun and Embrace Curiosity

When you get back into dating, don’t come at it with a checklist with boxes that need to be ticked to find the perfect new partner. The next person that you date might not look like what you thought, or they might not have the career that you thought you would want in a potential romantic partner. While there will certainly be some deal breakers, they shouldn’t necessarily be related to things like their age, their height, their hobbies, etc. If they are a good person, fun, and caring, see what happens on the dates. Get to know the person better and learn more about them. You might be surprised at what you find. When you get back into dating, the goal should be to have fun, so get out there and meet new people.

Be Patient

This is an important rule that many people tend to push aside. Getting into a new relationship can be fun, but you have to resist the temptation of moving too fast and feeling like you’ve fallen in love. Keep in mind that when you are getting over a divorce, you may be more emotionally vulnerable and seeking feelings of love and acceptance. While they are great feelings, you do not want to mistake your excitement for being in love. Take it slow. See where things go and build the relationship. This will give you the time you need to see if it is something worth pursuing.

If you think that you are in love, that’s great. However, when those feelings are coursing through you is not the time to get married again. You need to make sure that it’s a real, worthy relationship and not just something that’s making you feel great at the moment. This could take several years. If it’s a strong enough relationship, it will last that long without issue.

Don’t Make Choices from Fear

One of the other mistakes you don’t want to make is jumping into a relationship too quickly with the wrong person because you are afraid of being alone. It’s okay to take the time you need to date and then meet the right person. People do things because of fear all of the time, and it can lead to some bad decisions. There are plenty of people out there, so you don’t have to rush into a relationship right away.

Don’t Wait for Perfection

While you don’t want to jump into the wrong relationship, you also don’t want to wait for perfection when dating. Don’t skip over those who might be a great, caring, fun person because they have one or two things that you think aren’t right for you. Remember, you are looking for fun when you are dating again. Also, remind yourself that no relationship is truly perfect.

Build a Strong Relationship

Good, strong, relationships should be built on four things: compatibility, communication, trust, and respect. If you want to be in a long-term relationship with someone and you want to be happy, you need these four elements. Otherwise, the relationship will break down over time. It’s simply not possible to build a healthy relationship without them. Of course, if you aren’t looking for a long-term relationship right now, then these things are not as important. When the time comes to determine if they are the right person for a committed relationship, though, you need to keep them in mind.