If you’re recently divorced and contemplating dating, you might be wondering what your next move is.

Where do I go to meet women?

Should I use a dating app?

But before you get into all that, you’ll need to pause and take a breath.

And ask yourself the following:

Am I over my ex and the divorce?

Not sure?  Here’s how you can tell: do you still talk about her?  Do you still vent about what she did to you?  If the answer is yes to one or both, you probably haven’t moved on, which might make it hard to be open to someone new.

What did I learn?

Chances are there were lessons to be learned from your marriage breaking up.  Did you take note of them?  Anything you would do differently in your next relationship?  What type of woman are looking for now? Be careful, if you don’t take time to reflect, you might make the same mistakes again.

Am I available?

Yes, you’re technically available in that you’re not married anymore but are you emotionally available?  Are you ready to start giving to another person?  Are you ready to share your life with someone?  If you’re not sure, then you’re probably not ready for a relationship.

What do I want out of dating?

Just sex?  A long-term relationship? Not sure?  Any of these are fine but it’s important to know.  Why? Two reasons. First, so you can have clarity for yourself and be purposeful.  Second, so you can be clear with your dates.  Most women are going to ask you this question, usually early on.

How do my kids feel?

They may not be crazy about you going out with women.  Depending on their age and how they are dealing with the split, you may need to give them some time.  At some point, you’ll need to ask them how they feel about it.

Like any change, divorce can be overwhelming.  You’re experiencing a lot of emotions all at once and adjusting to a new lifestyle.

As tempting as it might be, don’t rush into dating.

It may seem exciting on the surface, but it comes with its own set of challenges. 

Being clear about what you want and resolving any conflicts from your split will be important before you wade into the rough waters of the dating pool.

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