Guide to Dating After Divorce: 6 Tips for a Healthy Transition
Starting to date again after a divorce, whether it’s been amicable or messy, is definitely tough. Conflicting emotions are on the rise with most people either feeling like they’ll never be ready to be in another relationship again to others wanting the intimacy and warmness of a relationship ASAP.
So although it’s never easy looking for love again after being hurt and wounded, there are few tips enlisted below which can make it a little easier on you while you navigate through the dating scene.
1. Examine your own role in your past relationship
It’s much easier said than done, of course. But before moving on to a new relationship it’s crucial to understand what your own role was in the divorce. It’s not about blaming yourself but instead about taking responsibility.
For doing this, seeking therapy is a good idea as it will be a safe place to examine your feelings and heal.
2. Don’t rush into it
While the intimacy of a relationship can be heady and easy to miss and crave, try not to rush into dating for the sake of it.
You might not even realise you’re rushing into something, so look at the situation and person objectively. Take some time to assess what it is that you’re looking for in a relationship and a potential partner.
3. But don’t wait indefinitely either
Once you’re more sorted and on the way to emotional healing, feel free to start dating even if it’s just casual. No one is a 100 percent ready for anything and sometimes you just have to make the jump. Definitely take an assessment of your mental health but don’t wait for all the Is to dot and Ts to cross.
4. Get yourself a new hobby
Sometimes the toughest thing can be to put yourself out there and meet new people, whether it be a romantic interest or just a friend. An easy way to do that would be to find people who are pursuing similar interests.
Consider this a time for you to broaden your horizons – you can finally learn that instrument you always wanted to play, or learn Spanish for your upcoming trip or any other hobby which catches your fancy.
Doing this may or may not get you a date – but meeting new people will definitely make it easier for you to be in a space wherein you’re more prepared to date.
5. Work on your self-esteem
A failed relationship can make anyone get caught in a rut of self-doubt. Although it’s totally normal to question yourself and go through such a phase, you need to make sure it doesn’t become a permanent perception of yourself. When you start feeling like you don’t really have much to contribute in a relationship you settle for just about anything and that’s definitely not the way forward.
A failed relationship is never just one person’s fault, and while it will break down your confidence a little, you can definitely take the time you need to rebuild it. Listing down things you like about yourself – or the qualities you bring to the table in a relationship – is a good starting point.
6. Update your requirements
As a result of your life experiences, you have undoubtedly changed and grown. And so has what you require in a partner and relationship. The kind of partner you were attracted to before – or were looking for before may not be necessarily what you like or need right now.
Think about what matters to you right now, it could be loyalty, financial security, equality or any number of things.
(Prachi Jain is a psychologist, trainer, optimist, reader and lover of Red Velvets.)
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