After a long and awful divorce, you are now single. You are still feeling overwhelmed and unsure what your new life will be like now. Are family and friends encouraging you to get out there and meet new people? Should you? Are you ready for such a commitment?
Before you take the next step in your life and decide to open up to a new person, here are five reasons why you should wait before you date.
1. You are only dating because you are lonely.
Regardless of how unhappy you were in your previous marriage, the idea of being alone can be frightening. This feeling is normal, and it happens to every recent divorcee. The feeling might catch you off guard once the marriage is final and you find yourself doing activities alone. Before you decide to date, It's essential to take a step back to heal after a divorce. Don't force yourself to find someone new because you're scared to venture into the world alone. Take this time to process the pain you may be in due to the divorce and reawaken the person you have always wanted to be. Get to know the new you and give yourself the respect you deserve. You do not need a new spouse to determine how valuable you are as a human being. Enjoy your new life and your new independence.
2. You are only dating because you want your child to have a mother or father figure in their life.
After a divorce, you may find yourself having to parent as both a mother and father. Having to manage your new role can feel overwhelming, and the idea of bringing in someone new can come to mind. Do not go into a new relationship with the intent to substitute your previous spouse. You can inadvertently be causing pain to your kids and pressure on your new-found love interest. Again, take a moment to process your new family dynamic and create a foundation. Know you are in control and are fully capable to manage as a newly single parent. By establishing your new home, you can learn new ways to strengthen your relationship with your kids.
3. You are only dating because you are afraid you won't be able to afford to live alone.
Managing finances after a divorce can be challenging, but it may be an excellent time to grow independently. Think about acquiring new skills that can help you financially in the future. This can include starting a new profession, taking financial literacy courses, or pursuing further educational studies that can benefit you financially in the long run. The idea is to create a new stable foundation for your new life where you are happy.
4. You are only dating because your ex-spouse moved on.
Finding out your ex is dating again, regardless of how long it's been since the divorce, can be devastating. You may not want to be with that person because they hurt you, but it's not easy watching them be happy with someone else. Don't give in to the jealousy. Do not compare your life to the one your ex-spouse has chosen. Do things that make you happy, and if that means taking time to practice self-love and understanding what you want in your life, then that's what you should do. In the end, the day you choose to date, it should be when you're ready. There is a reason your relationship with your ex-spouse did not work, and it's important to learn from past relationships.
5. You are only dating because you want to get over your ex.
The cruel reality of divorce is that some spouses may still love each other through it all. Unfortunately, in matters of the heart, you can't just unlove someone. It takes time to get over someone, especially when you shared your life with that person. On top of still being in love, starting a relationship with someone when you are still processing your feelings is unfair to your new potential partner. You want to be able to commit to someone new to build a healthy foundation.
Finally, do not feel pressured to start a new life right after you divorce. Take control of your life by taking time to travel, develop new hobbies, create independence and meet new friends. Devote time for yourself and your kids and above all give yourself time to heal. There is no rush in matters of love. You will meet someone when you are ready.
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