Just curious, how do you know you're ready to date?
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.
Her: WW/57 Me: BS/63 24yrs M
3 great kids, now 22, 20, 17 b,b,g
D-Day 8/14/08, D 1/13/11
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.
So second Saturday night on my own I should get off the couch and phone and join some girlfriends for a drink?
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)]
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)]
Above all, be the heroine, not the victim. - Nora Ephron
It is our choices...that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities.
- J. K. Rowling
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.
Married: 11 years, no kids
The greater danger for most of us lies not in setting our aim too high and falling short; but in setting our aim too low, and achieving our mark. -Michelangelo
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.
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.
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.
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...
A person is a person, no matter how small. -Dr. Suess
Perserverance and spirit have done wonders in all ages.
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.
"For whatever we lose, like a you or a me, it's always ourselves we find in the sea" ee cummings