Divorce is no walk in the park— you’re probably feeling emotionally and financially drained and chances are, haven’t even though about dating again.
Now you’ve found yourself having to pick up the pieces of your life and learn about this new modern world of dating.
It’s a scary thought to put yourself out there again, and dating after a divorce can come with anxiety and a lot of doubt, but it’s crucial that you put your best foot forward, and follow these simple do’s and don’ts of dating after divorce!
Do’s and Don’ts of Dating After Divorce
Don’t Put Too Much Pressure On Yourself
When it comes to dating, you should never lower your standards, but instead, set reasonable expectations. Dating is supposed to be enjoyable, so it is completely ok if you don’t meet your soulmate on the first date you go on post-divorce. Picking the location can help ease some of the anxiety, agree to meet somewhere you’re comfortable will help keep you focused on the date. If the first date ends and you never want to see that person again, that’s completely fine!
It doesn’t mean that there’s anything wrong with you. First dates aren’t always what they’re cracked up to be, so while lowering your expectations might seem like a bad thing, in reality, it can help to alleviate any unnecessary pressure and enjoy your date.
Don’t Get Discouraged
Divorce can make you rethink your value as a partner, you might not feel as attractive or as appealing because of whatever evolved during your last marriage, but bad dates should never hinder your self-esteem. Bad dates are a normal part of the game so it’s vital to remain positive when things don’t work out. If you start to feel discouraged, consider your approach to meeting people. With dating methods constantly changing, there are so many new ways to date.
Dating apps, for example, can give you access to a wider range of people that share your interests, so there is no longer a need to just date someone within your community or town. It’s your chance to explore beyond your usual boundaries. You might look at your ex and realize that what you once thought you were attracted to has changed entirely. This is the time to reflect on what you’re really looking for in a partner.
Don’t Let Loneliness Drive You
It can be a bit weird and overwhelming to go from married life to being single. You might feel as if you need someone right away to cope, that should never be your motivation to get back out into the dating scene. There is no deadline for when you should or shouldn’t date, and nobody is going to judge you for wanting to wait until you’re ready. You should feel excited to start meeting new people, not desperate, which is why you should get to know yourself before jumping into the dating scene.
Taking yourself on dates can make you look forward to alone time but also ease into it. Creating a schedule through apps, like OmniFocus, or writing it down in an old-fashioned notebook can also help bring some structure back into your life and help you avoid feeling overwhelmed by commitments. This, in turn, will allow you to gain your independence back and embrace the silence.
Do Take Your Time
Sex is fun, but you should never use it as a tool to get over your ex, it most likely will lead to regret and guilt. Give yourself time to explore what you are looking for in a sexual partner. That time will help you decide when you’re ready to start getting intimate. Now, if you’re ready, but you haven’t had sex with someone new in a long time, it can be nerve-racking. Insecurities involving your body and technique might start pouring in, so it’s helpful, to be honest with yourself, and your partner, on your boundaries and nerves.
If you’re a man dealing with common bedroom difficulties or intimacy-related stress, for example, you might want to consider using an erectile dysfunction medication for additional help during your first post-divorce sexual encounter. As for women, on the other hand, a fun way to ease into sex is to experiment with sex toys to get to know yourself and your needs without the added stress.
Do Learn from Your Past
If you ever wanted to go on a hot air balloon ride, but your ex-spouse had a fear of heights, this is the time to do it. Live your life and do things that you typically had to put on hold for your ex-spouse. It’s important to remember that If you do meet someone that you feel a connection with, don’t allow yourself to jump right into thinking that they’re the one because of a connection does not equal marriage. Letting things evolve slowly and organically relives some of the tension when it comes time to define the relationship.
Dating does not always mean you’re looking for exclusivity and in order to learn from your past, you have to date around. Everyone has emotional baggage and you should be upfront about your marital status, but unloading on your date is a big no-no. You are more than your divorce and your ex, so challenge yourself to be spontaneous and not take life too seriously.
Do Have Fun
Honestly, there is no magic formula in regards to dating after getting a divorce. It can be messy and hard, but also a wonderful and weirdly fulfilling experience. Finding yourself and what you want in this next chapter of life can keep you from losing your mind. The most crucial part is that you have fun. While it may seem like an obvious detail divorce hurts, and sometimes getting stuck in that hurt is so much easier than looking for the positive.
But if you are mindful of these do’s and don’ts, stay optimistic and enjoy yourself everything will eventually fall into place.
Capri Fiello is a relationship and lifestyle writer, whose hope is to inspire men and women and advocate for their health and wellness through her writing. When she gets free time, she’s most likely spending time with her friends and family. https://www.forhims.com/