No one goes into a marriage thinking it will be anything other than happily ever after, but what happens if it doesn't turn out that way? Dating after divorce can be incredibly difficult - not only are you dealing with the end of what you thought would be your ‘forever love,' there's also the small fact of dealing with the fact your life was intertwined with someone else's and now has to be unpicked. If there are children involved or shared assets, things can get painful and complicated quickly.
Once you do decide to get yourself back in the dating scene, you may find that things have moved on quite a bit since you were last single (depending on how long you were married). It's no longer just a case of figuring out what to wear or where to go. There's a whole new world of online dating out there, and navigating it can feel intimidating. But then, it's not impossible! Lasting love can be yours with a few simple steps.
Conquer your fears.
It's scary, really scary, but that doesn't mean you shouldn't do it. Take it slowly. Dip your toes in, ask your friends for advice, meet a few people with no expectations or pressure, go to parties. Then, when you feel a bit more comfortable, you can go ahead and get into dating.
It's easy after a divorce, especially if it was a painful one, to feel cynical about your romantic future. However, this isn't a great mindset to have when getting back into dating. Staying positive is essential. You'll soon get back into the habit of being optimistic about meeting new people.
Don't get stuck on being 'ready.'
It doesn't matter how long it has been since your divorce. You may never know for sure if you're ready to start again. That said, you'll probably know if you aren't. If the very idea of dating again is incomprehensible, then maybe wait a little longer. If you're down to a niggling doubt, it might be time to take a look at a few dating sites and see what's out there. Afroromance.com is a good start, or Match.
Don't sabotage yourself.
It's easy to get into the mindset of 'there's something wrong with me' or 'I don't have anything to offer' after a divorce, but train yourself to be out of self-sabotage, or you'll never move on. There's nothing wrong with you. Your relationship just didn't work out. It doesn't mean a new one will go the same way, and even if it does, there still isn't anything wrong with you!
Online dating is so mainstream now that it’s the second most popular way for people to meet (after being introduced by friends). Hoping to run into someone cute at the coffee shop is all well and good, but online dating allows us to take more control of our own destiny.
If you do meet someone great online, try not to drag it out too long before the meeting. Find out if your virtual chemistry translates to real life as soon as you're comfortable doing so. That way, you can either move on or decide to go ahead and pursue the relationship.