With marriage on the decline, have you missed your chance at boarding the matrimonial boat once again? Not at all.
Despite recent statistics that show that the number of divorces are up in the United States -- from 390,000 in 1960 to 1.1 million in 2002 -- and marriages are down to 1.5 million from 2.3 million over a similar time period -- the odds against your marrying again aren't as dire as the numbers would seem to predict. Here's
Reason #2: We're testing our relationships through cohabitation prior to tying the knot. According to the 2000 U.S. Census Statistics, there are 9.7 million Americans living with an unmarried partner. In fact, 41% of American women ages 17-44 have cohabited at some point in their lives.
Reason #3: Because a rising number of women have a financial status equal to or greater than their significant others, the need to marry for economic security is not as great as it was in generations past. With that burden lifted, women can now take their time in finding the right person who is the right match for all the right reasons: love, trust, respect, and passion.
Yes indeed, it's a new world.
That said, the divorced person seeking love and commitment should use all of these facts and figures to his or her advantage. Here are four tried-and-true rules that ensure your next voyage on the Love Boat will be a long and happy
Rule #2: Don't rush into the next relationship. You've heard this from me before: have many dates. Why? Because the more dates you have with various partners, the better you'll be able to discern what you are and are not looking for in a life partner.
Rule #3: Don't make concessions for behavior that seems untrustworthy. When we're worried that we may miss out on finding love again, we sometimes put up with actions that, in another time and place, would have had us running out the door. Sure, if it's an issue of attraction, make a concession or two, but on the issue of behavior, don't ever feel you have to compromise or "settle" in order to be happy.
Rule #4: Never let the past sabotage your future. Yes, you've made mistakes before. But now more than ever, it's time to trust your gut instincts about what you want out of life, and how finding that will make you happy. If that person enters your life, welcome him or her aboard!
John Gray, Ph.D. is the #1 bestselling relationship author of all time. He is the author of more than 20 books, including Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus. He is an internationally-recognized expert in the fields of communication and relationships; his unique focus is assisting men and women in understanding, respecting and appreciating their differences.
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