So we post a lot about what happens during a divorce but I thought some tips for those entering the deep waters of dating again might be helpful. Having watched way too many relationships fall apart here are some tips to keep in mind as you tread into the dating world again:
1. Don’t date until your divorce is final. No matter how much you want to move on wait until the ink is dry before that first date. It will make your divorce lawyer happy, your kids happy, your extended family happy and you are less likely to make a mistake with whomever you choose.
2. Figure out what went wrong last time. This seems simple but if you never take time to figure out what “your part” was in the demise of your last relationship you are destined to repeat it.
3. Don’t settle. It really is better to be alone than it is to be with someone who isn’t Mr. Right. So often many of you “settled” the first time. Don’t do it again.
4. Don’t introduce him/her to your kids yet. You need to be serious about the person you are dating before you introduce him/her to your kids. Your kids have already experienced a loss by virtue of going through the divorce. If you introduce him/her to your kids and it doesn’t work out your kids will be experiencing a loss again.
5. Take time to figure out what you really want in a partner this time. So you can’t have everything but you are older, wiser, and a lot smarter by virtue of going through a tough divorce. Do you want someone who is going to be a good stepfather, someone who shares the same hobbies, someone who doesn’t drink, someone who is financially responsible? While you may not have thought about these things the first time around think about them now and cut it off early if he/she doesn’t meet your criteria.
6. Do a background check. Google, facebook, twitter, or hire a private investigator to do a background check. If you really like this person he/she will be spending lots of time with your kids and/or you will be sharing finances. You really are too old to be wasting time or losing any more money on someone who has what I like to call “serious issues.”
7. Don’t date anyone who is too friendly with his/her ex or who absolutely hates his/her ex. Both being too friendly by running errands or doing personal favors for him/her or the person who abhors his/her ex and spends way too much time talking about how terrible he/she is should be a big red, danger sign.
Finally, Good luck and go get ‘em Tiger!