Six things to do before dating after divorce

Before I went back into the dating scene, there were several things that I had to deal with, and I am sharing this with you so you can avoid some pitfalls of dating too soon.

Take the time to examine why you feel the urge to date again. Is it because you are lonely? If so, then it is not time to date, I’ll share a few of my reasons to wait. I went through several relationships because of my fear of being alone. I accepted behaviors that were less than I deserved, and I settled for less than made me happy. ¬†Fear of being alone is not a good reason to date; get a goldfish, not a human.

Make sure you have completely let go of your ex. ¬†Sometimes we think that we have let go, but we are holding on the simple things, like the way they opened the door, or the way they said good morning. Or you may be holding onto anger about the past. No matter what it is, it has to be released, or you can’t open your hands for new relationships. Closed fists can’t receive gifts, and new love is truly a gift.

Get to know you without an attachment. Sometimes I think we forget that we were born into this world alone, and we could grow and thrive without another person attached to us at the hip. What is your favorite color, who is your favorite sports team? In marriage, we take on many of the characteristics of our mates, so we are you on your own? Now is your opportunity to fall in love with yourself, reinvent your life, and live on your terms now. 

Accomplish a few goals before you enter the dating world. Have you always wanted to go back to school? What about writing your book? By taking the time to work on a few of your personal goals, you will not have regrets or an excuse to blame someone else because you didn’t finish.

Clean up your credit, if you meet someone, and it leads to marriage, don’t go into the new relationship burden with debt from your past. Pull your credit reports from all three bureaus and start working toward debt freedom. It will feel amazing when you have paid off all of your outstanding debts.

Prepare your children for what is to come. I’m not saying going out and tell them that you are bringing home a new spouse, but do explain to them that there will be evenings or afternoons when you will be coming home later. Let them know that you will be making new friends. Give them time to process the information. They may be adamant that you not meet anyone; they may be afraid that you are trying to replace their parent. But at a minimum, you have opened the conversation. The conversation with your children will also give you a reliable indicator of whether they will need additional emotional support as you move forward in life.

There are many other things that you can do to prepare for dating again; these are my top five. Take some time today and make a list of what items you consider essential to deal with before you meet that someone new.


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