Going through a divorce can be incredibly stressful. The process can make you feel like dating again wouldn’t even be worth it, but if you have taken the time to process and recover from the experience, you may want to get back into dating.
But, before you jump back into the pool feet first, you may want to consider taking some time to ensure you are ready to start dating. Here we’ll give some tips on knowing you are ready, meeting new people, and some tricks for dating after a divorce.
How to Know If You Are Ready to Date Again
Knowing when you’re ready to start dating again can be really challenging. Whether you’ve had a friend or family member try to get you back on the proverbial horse or you’re simply feeling ready to get back into the world of dating, there are a few questions you should ask yourself before you do.
- Have you finished processing the divorce?
- Are you settled about your divorce?
- Do you know what you are looking for in a partner?
There is no correct or incorrect way to go through a divorce. This said you do not want to get back into dating until you have fully processed the divorce. We all need time to work through big changes in our lives, and divorce is no exception. So, before you start dating again, make sure you can answer yes to the three questions above.
How to Meet People
When you’ve determined that you’re ready to start dating, you may wonder how to meet people. Realistically, there are two main methods for meeting people when you are dating — in-person and online.
The Old Fashioned Way
Classics are classics for a reason. Maybe you met your first partner at a local cafe and hit it off well. Perhaps you met someone at your favorite bar or restaurant. Meeting someone in your daily life can be a great way to meet someone with similar interests. Also, it allows you to meet and interact with someone in a more casual and comfortable setting for you.
Some great places to meet new people, if you consider meeting someone the old-fashioned way, are community events and classes. These are both areas where you can find people with similar interests to you or people in your community who are also looking for a partner. If you have the idea of approaching new people, it can be a good idea to tell your friends or family that you’re interested in dating again and see if they have any friends they may be interested in introducing you to.
The other option for dating is online or dating apps. There are so many dating apps to choose from, and many people swear by one app or another. Each app is geared towards different types of connections — for example, Tinder is a good choice if you’re looking for a more casual connection, but Match would be a good choice if you are looking for a long-term relationship. These are only two of many different options, and a good way to determine which app is a good fit for you could be to ask friends or family members if they have any preferred dating apps.
For most people, the hardest part of online dating is picking the right dating app for you. However, once you pick an app, you can create a profile and start making connections. In today’s world, most people use online dating or dating apps for all or at least some of their dating.
Tips for Dating After Divorce
Once you’ve set up your dating profile or met someone you are interested in dating, the next step is going on a date (or meeting them in person if you’ve only talked online so far). This can be incredibly intimidating, especially if you haven’t been on a date.
So, without further ado, here are some tips to help make dating after your divorce less intimidating
Take It Slow
Rushing into dating never works out as well as it does in the movies. Especially after a divorce, it can be challenging to know how you will feel in a new relationship. You may find that what you thought you wanted in a relationship is not actually what you are looking for.
A new relationship is a fresh start, but remember that it doesn’t have to be immediate. Taking it slow allows you to really understand what is important to you, how you want to be treated in the relationship, how you want to communicate with your partner, how fast you want to go in the relationship, and what type of life you want to live.
Be Upfront About Your Past (and What You Are Looking for!)
The start of any good relationship is honesty and respect. If you are looking to get into a new relationship, it is crucial that you are upfront with your new partner. Let them know what you are looking for in a relationship. Also, make sure to tell them about any kids that you may have and what your relationship with your ex-partner is like.
Take Time to Enjoy Your Hobbies
Not only can taking time to enjoy the things you love make you happier and help you feel more fulfilled in your life, but it can also be a great way to meet new people with similar interests. So, if there is a class you’ve always wanted to take, a club you’ve always dreamed of joining, or simply a hobby you’ve always wanted to try out, now is a perfect time. Also, starting off a new relationship with a common interest is a great way to connect.
Have an Escape Plan
We know this sounds bad, but hear us out. There are tons of amazing people in the world, but there are also people who make us feel uncomfortable. Having an “escape plan” can be a great way to ease your mind and ensure that you feel safe when you are meeting someone new. Also, it is crucial to have a plan in place in case of an emergency.
So, make sure you let a loved one know where you will be and check in with them so you can be sure that you are safe, even if you are only in the early stages of dating.
See a Therapist
If you start meeting people and you realize that you may not be quite ready for dating again or you feel you aren’t sure what you want from a new relationship, you may want to talk to a therapist. A trained professional can help you process any lingering feelings for your ex-partner, determine what you want in your life going forward, and help you set your priorities in a safe and comfortable space.
So, if you feel that you have some emotions that you need to work through or you simply want some additional guidance on how to determine what you want in your life, please do not hesitate to reach out to us at Love Heal Grow to speak with a therapist.