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There's nothing new about feeling gun shy after a relationship ends badly. However, when a marriage ends, feelings of disbelief accompanied by deep sadness and an intense sense of failure can make you want to give up relationships forever. Some people who divorce may never remarry. But for many, divorce is simply a case of having made the wrong match. Dating after divorce offers another chance to make the right one.
Are You Ready?
Be patient and gentle with yourself. Make sure you have given yourself time to heal after your divorce. If you are full of anger or still locked in a battle with your ex, you will not be emotionally available to begin a new relationship. Ask yourself what kind of person you seek. Analyze your marriage and the strengths and weaknesses of your ex. Be conscious of your past mistakes and you will be less likely to make the same mistakes again.
How To Meet Someone
Try taking a class in a topic that interests you. This is sure to put you in a room with like-minded people. Evening and extension classes are attractive to older and returning students. Volunteering for a cause you care about will also allow you to meet people who care about the same things you do. Online dating sites are more popular than ever and offer the opportunity to communicate with several people at a time. Finally, tell your family and friends that you are ready to date. Putting the word out with people who know you well can result in the best matchmaking.
What To Keep To Yourself
At a certain point, your date may ask why you divorced. If your marriage ended antagonistically, try not to trash your ex-husband or wife by describing them in negative terms. While you may feel tempted to blame everything on your ex, like most things, divorce is often a two way street. Your dignity, honor and reputation will remain intact if you find a way to talk about your divorce honestly but with generosity toward your ex. Find phrases to describe your break-up that are appropriate and work for you but keep you from dragging your date down into the dirt. Talk to your therapist or closest friends if you feel the need to disparage your ex-partner. Don't use your date to get things off your chest.
What To Tell The Kids
What you decide to tell your kids about dating will depend greatly on their ages. In any case, letting your kids know you are dating can be awkward and even painful. Remember, honesty is the best policy. Once you decide to get in the dating game, give your kids plenty of notice and let them get used to the idea. Let them know you are not jumping into a permanent relationship immediately but that you would enjoy some fun and the company of another adult. Choose the right time to introduce your date and your children. There is no point in introducing a date too soon in the relationship but don't wait too long either. The chemistry between your kids and your date can be key to its success or contribute to its failure.
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