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roarlouder posted 2/1/2014 20:47 PM

I am no where near ready- just left 10 days ago. But in some ways this has been a long time coming...

Just curious, how do you know you're ready to date?

Chippednotbroken posted 2/1/2014 21:00 PM

I have wondered the same. I don't think there is any time period. I am a month out. I find myself fantasizing, I think I just like the idea of finding love. Another poster made me feel bad for flirting though, saying i was basically cheating. So I can think just not act.
Hopefully those that are further out will have good advice. I am planning on waiting at least a year maybe more. I have big issues to work out though. I think it's natural to want to move on. Just don't want to end up with more of the same.

Merlin posted 2/1/2014 21:06 PM

Before you're ready.

There is no harm in 'getting back out there'.

Finding love? Maybe. It's certainly not under your couch. Better to just go out and have an adult beverage and some adult conversation.

I began going out relatively early into my separation. My now ex-w began, uh 'dating', while we were married. I couldn't top that.

roarlouder posted 2/1/2014 21:06 PM

I hear you. I think (hope) my BS detector will be good...but I don't want to take trust issues with me. I know I won't make it a year, but will wait until the divorce is final (we should be getting a quick one) I am actually excited (at the moment) about getting out there. But I don't think it's necessarily that fun.

littlefoggy posted 2/1/2014 21:09 PM

My top 5 topics of conversation are
1) I am getting divorced
2) The Weather
3) My husband cheated on me with a teenager
4) The first season of American Horror Story which I am finally watching.
5) Divorce law in my state.

So I am not ready yet.


When I can fill in the top 5 with things that are in no way related to STBX, I think that will be a pretty positive sign.

roarlouder posted 2/1/2014 21:11 PM

Lol Metlin. My STBXH had the net e to ask me to tell him when I start dating so he "doesn't have egg on his face waiting for me like a fool".... Umm... No words.

So second Saturday night on my own I should get off the couch and phone and join some girlfriends for a drink?

roarlouder posted 2/1/2014 21:11 PM

Littlefoggy, that's a really good measurement!!

Chippednotbroken posted 2/1/2014 21:15 PM

I feel the same way Roar. I am excited to find something new, I might not make the year but I have my kids to worry about and refuse to let them think anything about that. If I had no kiddos I'd be out at least having fun. You go have fun!
Merlin -- ditto. My ex has already had a girlfriend. Oh well.

FaithFool posted 2/1/2014 21:45 PM

Read the thread that starts with "You Were Right Guys" and go and see how much pain Phoenix is in tonight.

Then figure out if you're ready for that, because quite often that's the outcome.

Hanging out with friends is a great option. Just keep it that, hanging out with friends, not trolling for dates.

Your friends will be there for you if and when the bottom falls out. Treasure them.

[This message edited by FaithFool at 9:47 PM, February 1st (Saturday)]

persevere posted 2/1/2014 21:48 PM

So I will play the SI bad cop lol....don't consider dating until you've had some time to heal. And this advice is not just meant to protect you, but also potential dating partners.

As many of us do, I started dating too early, and I now realize I hurt a very nice man. We had a great time but I realized about 2 months in that I wasn't ready and I poofed on him for awhile, but then reached out to explain. He was nice about it but he was very interested and hurt by the outcome. I realized it was wrong of me to put someone in that position when it was clearly too early for me to be ready for any semblance of a relationship.

If you read around a bit this is a common discussion on SI. If you do start and realize you're not ready you can always stop, but just be aware that you mayhave another's feelings to consider,

Eta - Faith and phmh make some excellent points too. And never forget the old SI adage "Broken attracts broken"

[This message edited by persevere at 9:52 PM, February 1st (Saturday)]

phmh posted 2/1/2014 21:50 PM

Pretty much everyone dates before they're ready to. If they're lucky, they emerge a little smarter, without having hurt someone else or themselves too badly. The first post-D breakup often hurts worse than you can imagine (some say it hurt worse than D-Day/the breakup of the relationship that brought them to SI.) If they're not lucky, they set back their healing immensely and also hurt some innocent person in the process. Or they wind up with someone as bad as or worse than their cheating ex.

The thing is, it takes TIME to heal. (Along with working through and processing what happened.) There's a good reason why so many second marriages fail and why so many people find themselves with a WS #2 -- because they're not yet healed and broken attracts broken.

I know you don't want to hear this, and I also know that you probably won't listen to me, but go out and have fun. Learn to be single again. Are there things you didn't do/do as often because of your ex? Pick up new hobbies. Strengthen friendships. Make new friends. Rebuild your self-esteem.

Personally, I increased my running, strengthened friendships, took up painting, started going to movies and concerts alone, bought a house, and experienced so many other new things.

From being on here for a few years, my personal experience, and watching my real life friends, I think that people do best when they don't date for at least a year past final separation. (And most people need more time.) Of course everyone is different, and it's not like a switch is flipped, but there are just so many people who inflict needless suffering on themselves and others because they don't heal first.

It takes at least that long for the brain to heal, for you to process what happened to you, mourn your relationship, relearn boundaries and healthy relationship behavior, learn to spot (and act upon) red flags. It takes at least that long to rediscover who you are, to find the parts that were buried by being with an abusive partner (cheating is abuse, and frequently is coupled with emotional and/or physical abuse.)

Frequently -- several times a month -- people who asked the same question (usually with a partner in mind, or someone with whom they're going to "take things slow, just be friends and see what happens") come back and tell us that we were right -- they should have waited longer. I have never heard anyone say they regretted taking time for themselves to heal, whereas we frequently hear the opposite.

It's your life; you only get one chance at it. Personally, I'd rather take time to make sure I'm healed and then find a really good guy rather than be out there dating just because I don't want to be alone, and then wind up with another dud.

thyme2go posted 2/1/2014 23:00 PM

The last three posters explain it better than any therapist ever will - listen to them. But typically, new folks asking do not heed the advice given by experienced members.

My advice is to get divorced and then wait another year. You won't understand my advice until you reach that year.

The very best and simplist tidbit of advice I have heard regarding this matter is, if you have to ask, you are not ready.

Do not let the very strong desire for validation and a self-esteem boost cloud your vision.

-t2g

newlysingle posted 2/2/2014 00:37 AM

I've been wondering this too. I'm about 11 months out from separation and almost 5 months out from divorce. I would say that I'm just now warming up to the idea. I don't think I'm quite ready yet, but I can see it as a possibility on the horizon.

I've been attending a support group where we've been discussing boundaries for the past few weeks. It's really been helpful to me in this process of preparing to get back out there.

Nature_Girl posted 2/2/2014 00:54 AM

Whatever you do, don't use another human being to help yourself get over your divorce. Don't use another human being to help you get past your fears or to "get back out there".

BrokenDaisy posted 2/2/2014 03:16 AM

Whatever you do, don't use another human being to help yourself get over your divorce. Don't use another human being to help you get past your fears or to "get back out there".

THIS!! And everything phmh said!!

Dating too soon may feel good for a while but it only delays all the emotions that are bound to come up and if their being delayed the pain is so much worst when you finally do face them. Added to it new pain of a failed dating experience. It's not worth the quick feel-good. Good things come with patience and hard work, not short cuts. Dating too soon is a short cut which you'll pay for dearly in the future.

This is one of the main reasons I refuse to date. Too many people that shouldn't be dating are dating and they are just bound to hurt themselves and others.

BrokenDaisy posted 2/2/2014 03:17 AM

P.s do yourself a favour and read this blog: http://www.baggagereclaim.co.uk

Ashland13 posted 2/2/2014 06:26 AM

This is something I've spent time on, too. Thank you for the thread.

For myself, I have no idea. I know some things though...that I wouldn't want to drag a potential new guy threw the muck with me, so it seems to make sense to wait to be fully rid of Perv (as I can, haha).

Some examples I can think of I will share, in hopes of helping.

My parents are divorced and I watched, with interest, how both of them handled the lonliness, for it can be fierce, yes?

One parent jumped back in the dating pool, I think they simply could not tolerate being alone after a very long marriage. They proceeded down the altar very soon as well, reminiscent of tv sit coms, within a year of knowing the new person.

Well, this person cheated on them and out they went, back to being alone and trying to sort life out in a big rush. And so it was no surprise when #3 came along, the I.C., which made us kids raise eyebrows and be a little angry, but who are we to judge?

Suffice to say that they are together years later, but I've heard comments from the "partner" that things get rocky.

Then there's my other parent, who in life does everything by the book, was the bigger influence on me, but snails and turtles beat them to the finish line. However, in dating this caution won over hurry, because they finally found someone and years later, are still with the same someone while the other person floundered. They also talk of marriage again, which dumbfounded me and I hope it works, because this is the abandoned parent.

It was the one who left who ran headfirst back into relationships without even being friends first.

I'm not sure if this will help anyone but it helps me.

And the solitude I can trust, though it hurts like a son of a gun knowing the x is not alone.

But I would rather be like the parent who "won" in the dating scene and wait.

I don't know if "true love" is real or something in the story books, but it sure sounds nice...

cmego posted 2/2/2014 06:42 AM

I waited a full year post separation. At that point I stumbled into a guy and we had a long, slow build to dating. Although I ended with a broken heart, I felt ready at that point. I did therapy, I worked hard on myself, I had new things to talk about, volunteer work, etc. That first break-up post D is as hard, or harder, than the divorce itself.

I always cringe when I hear people around me say, "I just want a little male attention, I don't want to DATE them…"

YES! Go out with girlfriends for dinner or drinks. YES! Go do volunteer work. YES! Join some MeetUps to expand your social circle.

There are a lot of things you can do to expand your social network that don't involve the complexities of dating.

In a year or two, you might go out with someone who's first topic is their cheating ex…and you will know they aren't ready to date.

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