So, you’ve been out of the dating arena for a while, and now you and your ex are divorced and you are ready to get back into the world of dating. You’ve got to start somewhere. Expert Tips on how to date after divorce. Dating after divorce can be an exciting new chapter in your life.
No matter what stage of life you’re in, dating is always challenging. It was overwhelming in high school, complicated in college, and even more complicated as an adult—and that’s assuming you’ve never married before. If you’re a 30-something single after a divorce, meeting someone fresh can present an altogether new set of difficulties.
“In the United States, statistics said that the average age of first marriage is 27 for women and 29 for males, so people may stigmatize someone for being in their 30s and already divorced,” explains psychologist Kelly Campbell. “This stigma may lead a person to wonder if there is something wrong with them for divorcing at such a young age, and their self-esteem may suffer as a result.”
Our recommendation? Never surrender and make a concerted effort not to take any dating failures personally. Dating is difficult regardless of your situation, but you will meet someone you can relate to as long as you remain optimistic. Campbell notes that finding love post-divorce is difficult—as is dating in general. We asked her to discuss the mindset and strategy that someone in this scenario should take if they’re ready to resume dating, and her suggestions should help make a difficult situation feel more doable.
4 Expert tips: Date after divorce
Put Yourself in the Correct Mental State
“Divorcee should take steps to ensure that the difficulties they encountered in their prior partnership do not alter their outlook on subsequent relationships,” Dr. Campbell says. “When people avoid or bury their grief, they run the risk of those difficulties affecting them and their relationships in the future.” It’s difficult to go forward when you haven’t fully processed your marriage’s emotional wounds. Before you use a dating app or ask your friends to introduce you to someone, ensure that you are truly ready to date.
If you’re unsure if you’re going on a date with someone because it’s time or because you’re eager about meeting someone, consider the following. Among these are the following: Does the prospect of opening up to someone new sound exciting or frightening?
Address Prior Marriages
“When individuals discuss their past marriage, they should do it without embarrassment. The divorce is ingrained in their identity, and if a prospective spouse cannot accept that, they are not a suitable match, “Dr. Campbell confesses. You are not compelled to disclose every aspect of your and your ex’s breakup. The best course of action is to inform your prospective new spouse as soon as possible. The longer you wait, the more you may feel as though this information is dragging on you, and you may begin to feel as though you are concealing something, which adds significant strain to your situation.
Maintain an Open Mind
“Allow yourself to try new things and avoid becoming fixated on a particular type of love partner simply because that is what you wanted in the past,” Dr. Campbell advises. Consider this: If you married someone who exactly matched your “type,” you may have to accept the truth that that person is not appropriate for you if you wind up divorcing.
Knowing that, you do not have to force yourself to go out with individuals you know you would not get along with, but you should venture outside your comfort zone at least a little bit. You may end up meeting someone with whom you never imagined being so pleased.
Establish Your Priorities
“This is by far the most necessary thing that people should do when they begin dating again,” Dr. Campbell says. Additionally, it makes sense. Even if you retained a strong sense of self-identity during your marriage, you almost certainly identified as a pair. For instance, you almost certainly would not have traveled without your partner if you were married. However, now that you are no longer married reintroduce yourself to activities that bring you joy before you begin to identify as a pair again.
Divorce can be difficult and traumatic. Before you start to date again, reflect on what you’ve learned from the relationship, what you might do differently the next time around, and what values stand out to you in terms of your potential new partner. Through this, the hope is that you will be able to move forward into a new, rewarding relationship.