Dating again after divorce can seem like one is back in high school with the drama it can entail. One may have forgotten what it is like to have a crush on someone and hope that they feel the same way too.
Or you feel like running in the opposite direction from an individual when there is zero interest on your part for them. There are many situations you can find yourself when dating post-divorce.
Dealing With Tricky Dating Situations Post-Divorce
1. Do not feel coerced into going on a date, as you do not owe them anything. Same with going on a date out of pity.
2. You could get tangled up in a mess when trying to break free down the road.
3. Have some stock phrases ready for turning someone down. When there was a frequent customer at work on the verge of asking me out, I bounced a few ideas off my girlfriends on how to say “no.” Asking me out did not catch me off guard and I turned him down, kindly, but firmly.
4. If on the fence about going out with someone, have a coffee date. You arrive separately and can talk for two hours if you hit it off, or make a hasty retreat if you do not. There is less pressure in this casual setting. Friends who meet people on Tinder revealed that their first date or two are over lattes. One can get a sense of character over the short time span.
5. A friend was asked out by a well-traveled, intelligent fellow. They had much in common and he insisted on a coffee get-together the following week. When she explained that she had houseguests to entertain before work, he said since the coffee shop was next door to her place of employment he would be there waiting. He hoped she could make it. She did not like that he felt her time should be spent with him rather than with her guests. She was glad to have only had a quick coffee with this controlling man, instead of a long evening
6. A painful part of dating is when only one party feels a strong attraction and the other does not. It is a delicate dance whether or not to share that you are attracted to them. The other person may reveal that they also feel a spark. Or they may look like a deer caught in the headlights with a look of fright on their face. When someone states that they want the relationship as friends only, accept it. You are not going to change how they feel about you. It can be tempting to think “Well if I lose weight/whiten my teeth/ take up tennis (or whatever), they will find me irresistible.” In this case, it is clear that dating is not on the horizon. Think about if you can have a platonic relationship with your crush or if it is better to cut ties and move on.
7. One may not be aware that they are giving off mixed signals which can be confusing. An example is, two male friends told me to stop wearing rings on my wedding finger. When I protested that the jewelry was ethnic looking, they said “yes, up close, but from across a room, they look like wedding rings on that finger. That keeps a guy from approaching you. Or you don’t want the men who are only interested in married women.” This goes for men too. A woman sees the flash of silver or gold on the wedding finger and assumes it is a wedding band.
8. Potential dates talk and compare notes. My male hairdresser says his female customers routinely complain about going to venues and not getting asked to dance. These women say the first guy or two who approached them to dance was too fat, too skinny, bald etc. so they declined. No one else came near. Other men notice when women say “no” and leave them alone. Guys tell their buddies that those ladies do not want to be bothered. Get up and dance with those less than perfect guys so you appear approachable.
9. I was about to break up with a long-time boyfriend when a guy I worked with asked me out. I wanted to date him, however, was not yet available. Instead of being truthful about my situation and that I was interested in dating a bit later, I said an abrupt “no.” He never asked again. When single again, a married male buddy confided that this doctor told the rest of them not to ask me out. Again, word gets around.
Listen to your intuition when someone seems a bit off or a situation does not seem right. Take your time getting to know an individual and dating will go more smoothly.