Dating after a divorce is difficult for everyone involved. Not only do you have to take the time to heal from the end of your marriage and feel open to a new relationship, but you also have to consider your family’s needs, especially if you have minor children.
Before re-entering the dating scene, make sure to work on yourself and think about your children’s future with your potential significant other.
How much time do I need?
This answer varies depending on your own personal healing journey. Moving on from a broken marriage can take a long time as you work through your emotions and adjust to your new normal. There is no right answer on when you should start dating after your divorce, but waiting at least a year typically works for newly single people.
During this period of healing and reflection, you should try to work through the following:
- Assess what went wrong with the relationship.
- Figure out what you want from a new partner.
- Seek mental health counseling and support groups.
- Think about your role in your marriage’s end.
- Try out new hobbies and have fun with friends.
Take your time as you do not want to jump into a relationship just for the sake of being with someone.
What if I have children?
Children need time to adjust to life after a divorce and the additional stress of a parent dating is challenging. Children may be a little angry or sad since they must navigate two homes and share one of their parents with a new person. It may be best to wait until life stabilizes to have an active dating life.
When you do introduce your children to your significant other, understand that jealousy may cause them to act out of character. Be patient and eventually they will begin to understand why you moved on.
Consider working with your former spouse to decide when to introduce significant others to the children. Also, be empathetic with your children and do not push them to like your new significant other. Eventually, everyone will adjust to the new normal.