It doesn’t matter how long you were married – the first date is always a concern. What do people do on dates now? Who pays for the date? Should I tell my children I am going on a date? And most important, how do I find someone who interests me? The first thing you need to know is that all of these questions are normal. Every person who has gone through a divorce has thought the same things.
Often, as soon as a divorce is final, well-meaning family and friends want to introduce you to the “perfect” person for you. Don’t feel like you need to go out until you feel ready! Some people want to date right away, while others take months to feel like they are comfortable with the idea. Do what feels right to you and don’t let anyone pressure you into a date if you just don’t feel right about it. Everyone takes a different time frame to heal after a divorce. You need to do what is best for you and your family.
Another question is whether to tell your children you are going out. Every situation is different, but for the most part, it is best to not say anything to your children. You don’t want to lie to them, but instead tell them you are having dinner with a friend or go out when they are with their other parent. Children need stability and having parents who drag a different person into their lives every week creates anxiety. Wait until you are sure the person you are dating is someone you are serious about before introducing your children.
Your first date with someone should be something fun that you enjoy. Many people believe a dinner is the best first date, but if you don’t know the person well, you may find yourself with awkward silences while you try to think of something to talk about. Instead, meet for coffee or ice cream or go for a walk in the park. If you are both sports fans, attend a sporting event. The idea is to spend time together without too much pressure.
It is hard to go out on dates after a divorce. There are many ways to meet someone new – at church, at work (if it is allowed) or through family and friends. Online dating sites are popular, but you need to be very careful when you meet someone on the internet. Always meet a new person in a public place. Be careful and have some fun!
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