Dating After Divorce – Traditional Methods Still Apply

Dating after divorce is difficult enough; however, now almost half of dating Americans are finding their soulmates online instead of in person according to eHarmony.  There are many websites and phone applications dedicated to finding you the perfect match, but traditional methods and courtesies still apply.  For some people, online dating is an opportunity full of surprises; however, the reality is the more people you date the less enthusiastic you become about real prospects.  Relationships do not develop overnight like online dating suggests.  If you’re looking for the one, you are not going to find him or her by dating multiple people at once. Additionally, if people date multiple people at the same time there is a split connection because some people have chemistry in some areas more than others; therefore, when the relationship need arises instead of reaching out to your potential true match to develop the bond you reach out to the person that has the strongest connection in that area of need you have for the moment at least that’s been my experience with others who date more than one person at a time (same problem occurs in marriages with affairs).

If its been awhile since you have hit the dating scene, you must know the traditional methods of dating before jumping into online dating.

  1. Keep conversation light and generally informative. Do not share too much information when you first meet online or in person. It is very tempting to divulge everything about yourself from the start; however, by doing this you are setting yourself up for failure because a connection has not been established.  Without a connection, the person receiving the information will make rash judgments which could result in instant rejection.
  2. Date with integrity. Do not use a burner phone number. Giving someone a burner phone number is disingenuous especially if you like the person you gave it to.  It indicates you lack trust and trust is a cornerstone to every relationship. If you are not looking for anything serious mention it abstractly, directly or creatively – mention it somehow.
  3. Set proper expectations. If you are constantly on the go and are not ready for a weekly dating relationship, say that up front or let the other person know your schedule.  Communication is important especially when there are two working individuals.  Even married people have a hard time managing communication and expectations and they live together.  If you cannot properly manage expectations you may not be ready for a serious relationship.
  4. Keep a lid on your divorce woes. Dating is not a therapy session. The person hanging out with you doesn’t need to hear the latest scenario that you confronted with your past partner (new scenarios surface especially if there are children).
  5. Practice the gentle letdown. If you’ve had 3 or more dates and there is no chemistry, gently tell the other person your feelings.  By prolonging the relationship you are setting up the person to get hurt and/or stringing them along, because you refuse to be an adult about the situation.

Online dating does not absolve traditional dating methods or common courtesies that should be utilized while dating.  If you want to get to know someone you must meet them face to face and you cannot ignore the top 5 courtesies.  Keep conversation light, date with integrity, set expectations, avoid past relationship discussions and practice the gentle letdown.  Dating was difficult before marriage and it is still difficult after divorce.  Ease the discomfort by remembering traditional dating methods.