Dating after a divorce is nothing like dating as a never-married-before person.
As one of the major events one can go through in a lifetime, divorce can really change a person’s perspective in life.
And that is why dating after divorce is not to be taken lightly and requires a few steps to be taken before you can consider dating again.
That being said, I see many women out there are rushing into dating shortly after being separated or getting a divorce, not giving themselves enough time to process their divorce.
Perhaps they are not going there with a serious relationship in mind and are just looking to have a bit of fun or to prove to themselves that they still have it.
Either way, I do not think it is a good idea, I don’t think having some fun will do these women any good and will only distract them from the work they need to do to allow the grief and healing process to take place.
What I know for sure is that if you are dating with the intend to find someone you really want to rebuild your life with, you need to take a different approach.
This blog post is all about showing you the crucial importance of not rushing into dating after divorce and giving you the actions that you need to take before considering dating again.
but before we get to that, let’s talk about why is it that some people have the urge to date again shortly after a divorce
Why do people rush into dating after a divorce?
You need to understand that the urge to date someone new is fear based. It is that simple
There main reason so many divorced are rushing into dating someone new is their fear of being alone and dealing with feelings of rejection and unworthiness, especially if they did not initiate the divorce.
It is never ( or very very rarely ) because they really moved on and they feel ready to meet someone special.
The 3 most fundamental points you need to be clear
Before getting out there and dating again, you need to:
- Be emotionally over your ex and the divorce: You cannot be still romantically attached to your ex or still mad at him and at what happened and hope to successfully date someone new.
- Have the right mindset: You should be going out there with the mindset that your divorce is the way life is giving you an opportunity for a new start.
- Have enough confidence on yourself and your ability to attract a new partner and build a successful relationship. If the divorce destroyed your self-esteem, you need to work on it first before dating again. Another relationship is a very bad source of confidence and self-esteem. Your self-esteem should come from within you.
Now, how do you get there?
I have been through that process myself, and here what I learned from my post-divorce period:
1. Learn again how to be happy by yourself
Whether you chose to split with you ex or it was imposed on you or was it a mutual decision, the end result is still the same.
You are on your own now and you will have to learn how to live and live well on your own.
This is the transition that majority of people struggle with and get even stuck in because they have designed their lives and build their happiness around their couple for years.
Everything that makes them happy was one way or another linked to their partner.
They developed habits as a couple, they shared hobbies as a couple, they made friends as a couple, they went on holidays as a couple and the list goes on.
So when divorce happens, they don’t know how to live anymore and the world feels so lonely out of a sudden.
I remember when it happened to me, I felt so lost and helpless.
I thought I could not survive without him and that I could only enjoy life if I live it with him.
Everything was tasteless, pointless, void of any purpose, or so I thought.
The truth of the matter is that I was feeling this way not because of the divorce, but because while I was married, I lost touch with who I was.
and the way I handled it was when I started reconnecting with myself.
I knew how to live and enjoy life before I met my ex, so there was no logical reason as to why I would not know how to do it again.
And this is my point, you knew how to live on your own at some point in your life, so now you just need to learn that again by reconnecting with yourself and do the things that make YOU happy as YOU, not as a couple.
It can be very small things that may seem insignificant but will amount over time.
You can start shopping and cooking the food you really like because now you do not have to compromise on that.
You can reconnect with an old hobby you gave up on years ago or discover new hobbies.
You can take yourself out on a date to YOUR favorite coffee shop, or dinner, or go to cinema on your own watch a movie that you chose without compromise…There are so many benefits to being single if you think about it.
You can travel somewhere you always wanted to visit, either alone or with friends. There are hotels and resorts for adult only that are great options for singles.
Even spending time by yourself is so so beneficial. You can use your spare time taking care of yourself, going to the gym, shopping, reading books, watching Youtube videos and learning new things.
I would recommend that you avoid things that you used to do together when possible very shortly after the divorce,
but once you are over the divorce emotionally, try to do every single thing you used to do as a couple, on your own. The idea here is to replace old memories with new ones.
2. Study your failure
The only way I found to get emotionally over my divorce and my ex was by trying to understand what happened.
AT first, I had a need to understand what happened because he did not give me any closure ( we barely spoke after he announced that he wanted a divorce).
I really became so obsessed with it and I slowly realized that this processing of trying to understand actually helped me get over him.
and the reason for that is very simple, knowledge gives clarity and with clarity comes demystification.
They say Success leaves clues, and so do failures
I not only started seeing him for what he really was and not the image of the perfect guy I had in my head but I also started seeing what role I played into this failed marriage.
This helped me learn so much about myself and my rapports with my ex but also to the world.
I also realized how I attracted my ex and what kind of people I was attracting in general.
I became aware of the insecurities that were causing me to make very poor choices.
I realized I had very poor boundaries and that I should not have been with him in the first place if I would have addressed those issues prior to the marriage.
I took full responsibility for where I was in life and I was determined to create a better life for myself.
How did I get there?
- I started writing down my thoughts and feelings on a notebook everyday.
I focused on answering these questions: Why my ex was not the right person for me? What exactly went wrong in the marriage? How did I contribute to it? What will I not miss in this marriage?
- I read a lot of self-help and psychology books. here are a few books that I found particularly helpful:
3. Get the right mindset
Before you go out there and start dating again, you need to get your mindset right.
You should not date again with thoughts that you are not worthy, that you are a failure, that you are a divorcee, that you do not deserve to be happy.
You need to make sure you first feel very good about yourself before dating someone, here is how:
- Get rid of limiting beliefs:
- Being a divorcee does not make you less valuable, any man who actually makes you feel any different is simply not for you, you do not want this type of men (and I know you may come across them…I watch enough Youtube videos of all these red pilled men advising their fellow men not to date divorcees or singles moms…that is okay, you just need to not consider these men…there are enough men on the planet.
- Having children is also not an issue, it is something to consider and to be honest about when the time is right. But it is not something to feel shameful of. The right man would love you for who you are and your children as a package.
- Don’t worry about your age, you are never too old to find a new partner, as long as you have realistic expectations and you are willing to be open about your requirements.
- Failure is just feedback and so is divorce, a feedback that you did not make the right choice and that is okay, you will have another chance to make the right choice.
- Replace limiting beliefs with new empowering beliefs: Check out the 9 mindsets of a high value woman post
- Study dating, learn about the psychology of attraction and inter-sexual dynamics. Read my blog or other people’s blogs. listen to podcasts or what Youtube videos. Read dating books. Here are a few books that personally helped me understand so much about dating and attraction:
4. Build a new image of yourself for yourself
You need to boost your confidence before dating again and your looks is an important part of your self image.
A new image of you will help you get over your past faster and look forward to your future.
You can get a makeover ( change your hair color, or style your hair differently).
You can change your makeup style, anything that would help you feel more confident about yourself.
You can also renew your wardrobe: you may have been wearing the same clothes for years and a new wardrobe won’t do you any harm. Get creative and express yourself through your new style, don’t be afraid to try new styles and colors.
5. Go back to the gym
A great way to spend some quality time with yourself is going to the gym.
Get back in shape and develop your mental strength, I cannot praise enough exercising and its benefits.
6. Rekindle your social life
It is important before start dating again to have a strong social circle so that you are not dependent on your new partner for all your emotional needs.
The only thing I would recommend is to reconnect with “real” friends or make new “real” friends, you really only need people who truly care for you and should stay away from superficial connections.
It is also perhaps time to clean up your social circle from friendships which do not serve you. Get rid of fake people.
Now, to the question how long should you wait before dating?
There isn’t one time frame that works for everybody, but one guideline would be to wait for 6 months to 1 year.
The right time for you is as long as it takes to accomplish all these things.
Once you are ready, what to do ?
I recommend you start with creating your free profile on dating websites as it is low effort ( compared to other things) and does not require a commitment on your side right away ( sign in and out whenever you wish).
I have selected a few websites that are catered for singles looking for a serious relationship.
Once you feel that you are 100 % comfortable dating again, you can try and meet other singles by other means like going to meetups in addition to online dating.
Thank you for taking the time to read my post.
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