How Did You Know... - Las Vegas,NV

Updated on February 19, 2013
J.V. asks from Las Vegas, NV
13 answers

How did you know that you were ready for the dating world again after your relationship/marriage was over with? I have thought about going out on some dates but I'm not sure if I really want to do that again. I was married for 7 years to my son's father and that ended late last year. I have thought that if I ever did date again I want a man who will treat me the way I know I should be treated. I want a man who understands that my son's father will be in his life and there's nothing that they can say about it. I know that sounds mean but there is no way I will ever try to replace my son's father. I don't know if I really want to give my heart away like I did before. Don't get me wrong I know there are some great guys out there but finding one is something I'm not sure I want to do just yet.
So how did you know or did you just let it happen when it was happened?


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So What Happened?

I think I'm going to keep on doing what I've been doing for the past couple of months. Go and hang out with my friends and just have fun. Thanks ladies!

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answers from Baton Rouge on

I got tired of sitting home, so I started going out alone. Not with the intention of meeting anyone, just to get out. I did meet people, and met a few that I enjoyed spending time with. I didn't date monogamously and made that clear from the get-go. I didn't date with the intention of forming an exclusive relationship - just for enjoyable company and occasional sex.

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answers from Philadelphia on

I was with my ex from 14-26 so I had never really "dated". When we split up and I realized he cheated for the entire duration my world crumbled. The life i envisioned of only being with one guy my entire life and raising an intact family was gone as i knew it.

It was pretty quick for M. that I wanted to "get out", not date but J. get out and kiss someone who wasnt my ex. For M. that excitement was enough to get M. through feeling the above. I worked through a lot that first year emotionally and realized what went wrong with us, where I failed, where he failed, what I wanted in the future, what I did not want and so on....and during that period of finding myself I ocassionally went out and J. kissed random guys...yes I was that girl in the bar making out with guys in wouldve thought I was doing more, but nope, J. kissing=)

Eventually after a year, I dated a guy was was the WRONG guy. Somewhat on purpose I knew it would never in a million years work out. I never wouldve introduced him to my daughter. He was best friends with my best friends husband so it was easy, fun, and thrilling. We did things that we new to M. in certain areas. It was never serious. Moreso it was sex but with one person so i didnt have to worry about std's. He filled the need for physical affection and that was all i needed at that time. We fizzled and eventually became friends without the physical stuff. It was never spoken, but he wasnt as into being physical on a regualr basis, and that was my only need in him besides a friend so we bacame purely very occsional bed buddies. It was perfect for M. because i didnt feel a need to date and look for mr prefect. We went out as friends to a comedy show one night and ended at the bar and I met my current boyfriend there.

I walked in and noticed him right away. He is completely the oppositte of my type so it was odd. He sung a song to his friend and I ran into her in the bathroom and told her her husband sounded amazing. She told M. she was married and not to him. Later in the night we talked a bit while my friend was busy. He asked for my phone number and I declined because even though i wasnt dating my friend I found it rude. He slipped M. his number. We ran into eachother one other time that night and I J. liked him a lot for some reason.
I got home and left the number in the bottom of my purse not thinking twice because I was content and wasnt looking for "the one" and he didnt seem like someone I'd date casually. 2 weeks later I saw his number there while cleaning my purse and for some reason decided to text him. That was two and 1/2 years ago=) He is kind of guy I want my daughter to marry one day. He is the guy I will marry one day.

For M. my credntials were someone who would treat M. in a way I wanted my daughter to see and one day find for herself. Also one thing I was certain on, I wanted someone who would be good with M. being friendly with my ex for my daughters sake but most impiortantly who could love and treat her like their own one day. Since my idealistic vision of one household was gone I had decided TWO complete households was the next best thing. I couldnt imagine a house where she didnt feel like that was her 2nd dad and 2nd mom (at her dad;s house) I want to have another kid one day and dont want her to feel diferent. That was when I knew I had a keeper when he loved her as much as any parent loves thier child

Anywho you didnt ask for all of that
If you want to go out and J. have fun. Do that and dont look for the next ONE. J. have some fun while your finding yourself=) you'll be ready for dating seriously when you find someone worthy of dating seriously, but in the meantime that doesnt mean you cant go out on casual dates and enjoy being an adult

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answers from Minneapolis on

I was married for almost 15 years - together for 17 and hadn't dated since I was in high school. I learned what I wanted and what I would compromise on and what I wouldn't. I dated very casually, but mostly had fun with friends when my kids with with their dad. We were separated unofficially for 1 1/2 years before it was final, officially separated over 6 months. I did counseling before the divorce was final and worked through a lot of things. The day I said, I really like my life and I have no desire for a relationship I met my now fiance. It was a set-up that neither of us knew about. I was guarded, but I was honest with him. He was very patient and worked to earn my trust.
I think a lot of people get into relationships too soon b/c they are trying to fix what was broken or to prove something. Take your time to heal. Go out and have fun with no expectation. When you're ready, you'll know. For me, I knew when I met someone who was worth it.
The criteria you have established is not asking too much and I think any decent guy would support those things. Just take it slow

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answers from Phoenix on

My personal belief is I didn't date until my divorce was final. I waited a year to start dating. I went out a few times with some nice guys, but they just wanted sex and not even pay for dinner first! lol That's fine for awhile but I wanted more or literally on a Wed I said, forget it, no more dating for me, I am done! I decided I would focus on my kids and my business and thats it. I mean, I was 40 and knew how to work a vibrator, so you know what I'm saying! Anyway, 2 days after that on that Friday, an acquaintance I met 3 months prior called me for business reasons, we started chating, he asked me out for breakfast the next morning and we have been together ever since and happily married for 3 years. So to answer your question, I think you know when you are "ready" but do not rush it and don't settle. Good luck!

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answers from Washington DC on

i can't speak from personal experience, just being with friends as they navigate this, and now my dad facing life as a widower living alone for the first time in his entire life.
what i think i would do would be to step away from the dating/not dating bright line. i don't think i'd actively seek out dating partners or join a website, but i wouldn't shut down possibilities either. i think i'd focus on living an interesting life full of things i love to do, and allow someone to enter my orbit- or not- through that venue. and i would plan on spending friendly non-romantic time with anyone and everyone before letting a romantic tinge enter the relationship.
i totally agree with you that priority #1 is having high standards.
but you don't have to establish those particular guidelines to someone with whom you're going to have coffee or go for a hike. we don't do that when we make new friends, do we?
just breath, and live a life that you love. then you can't help but attract kindred spirits.

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answers from Eugene on

My divorced friends recommended I wait a full year after my divorce was final before starting to date. At the time I didn't understand why, but now I do. There's alot of personal work I needed to do in that first year, without the distraction of a new relationship. Plus, the kind of man I'd choose now, 3 years later, is way different than what I would have wanted just a couple years ago.

I like this website: There's lots of good solid advice that's especially applicable for those of us who are dating again after a long relationship, or with kids to factor into the mix.

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answers from New York on

When I ended my engagement (after 7 years together) I remember having the same thoughts. Eventually those thoughts faded and shifted more towards "it would be nice to go out to dinner with someone who thinks I'm pretty" instead of a "girls' night" every Friday night.

For me, when I was able to stop finding all of the reasons why dating again was a bad idea, it seemed like a good idea to start dating. I casually dated a couple of different people for nearly a year before finding someone that I wanted to date exclusively. We were set up on a blind date by good friends and he's wonderful... 8 years later we're married and very happy.

You'll know when it seems like a good idea. Remember too, going on a couple of bad dates isn't the end of the world. I went on a few of those too.

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answers from Boston on

Sounds like you're undecided about dating. I'm sure it's a very daunting thought - you're anxious for some adult companionship but it's been a long time since you've dated, and you have a child to factor in.

I think it might be premature to worry that you're going to have to defend your child to a prospective mate - there are a lot of decent men out there who can love a woman with a child and who can accept the involvement of another man in raising that child. It's so much more common than it was even 10 years ago. If you meet someone you care about, there's plenty of time to pay attention to any red flags that he's reluctant to let her father into her life. But you're already so worried that you are saying "there's nothing they can say about it" and being defensive about not wanting to replace your child's father. It might be better for you if you can trust that there ARE men who will be cool about that. So many kids these days have more than one man in their lives, and more than one woman as well. Kids can be nurtured by a lot of different people.

It sounds like you have not been treated well in the past so maybe you are concerned that you won't find someone who will do that. It's good that you are keeping your own needs front and center. I think, if you focus on that and on projecting confidence and a feeling of self-worth, you will attract men who respect and admire that about you. You will also be modeling the type of woman you want your son to find some day, and showing him that good women expect men to be the best they can be - the kind of many you hope your son will become.

If you have unresolved feelings about the way you've been treated in the past, by your ex or by anyone else, then it might help to get some counseling to clarify your past problems and your future goals/needs. It sounds like you are still hurt ("I don't know if I really want to give my heart away") and maybe a little unsure - so meeting with a counselor can help you deal with some of that.

In the short run, think of dates as "grown up nights" or even "grown up lunches" and just a chance to have an enjoyable few hours, rather than a search for a new partner. You'll get back in practice without putting a lot of pressure on yourself or on the guy in terms of his suitability as a future partner. You don't need to grill a guy on his willingness to allow the dad in your son's life, and you don't need to be on guard completely. Just go have some fun. Sometimes these guys won't be right for you, but they may be entertaining or may even know some other guy who'd be a better match. So try to think about enjoying being an adult woman and getting some entertainment and socialization outside of your home and your son.

But if you are really not ready, don't push yourself. There's no timetable on grief or healing from past hurts. However, nervousness is normal even if you ARE ready to start venturing out, so don't wait until everything feels perfect.

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answers from Houston on

My two cents: You should get your rhythm in this new place, co-parenting with your ex. Know that you don't just deserve any special treatment that you do not command by what you bring to the table. (Lots of women lay it out there for the men to do all the work and then complain about what they deserve. A princess has no care in the world; a queen knows how to help carry the weight of the world.) Even though you aren't looking for a replacement father, expect that any man worth his salt will want to be a father figure in your son's life if he wants to be with you, and you'll need to learn how to let him. (I would certainly recommend blended-family counseling to help find this balance.)

Should you seek to remarry, determine in advance your answer to this question: Who comes first, your husband or your child? If your husband will come first, then you will need to be sure to marry someone who can love him like your son needs, so you don't spend time worrying about his intentions toward your son. This will also affect when and how you decide to introduce a new man to your son.

I always tell my friends not to date for marriage. That's not what it's for. Dating is for getting to know yourself and the world around you. Go out and have a good time. Enjoy the company of another man when you're in the mood for that. Commit where you want.

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answers from Seattle on

I personally don't think there is anything wrong with dating after a divorce, but I hate to see the kids dragged into it.
I would suggest you give yourself time until you feel ready, and while you are doing this, get some counseling.
Most marriages end in divorce because both partners have contributed to the relationship's demise. It is easy to see the ex's mistakes, but not always to easy to recognize our own role in it. I would suggest that you get counseling to explore which of your behaviors have contributed to your divorce, what you are actually looking for in a relationship and identify your expectations you have for potential partners. The more you learn about yourself the better you will be at choosing a new partner.

Last but not least, you do not have to establish a new family with someone you are seeing. there is nothing wrong (and many things right) about keeping your dating and parenting life separate. Maybe instead of choosing a step parent for your son, find a partner for yourself with the intention of maintaining separate households. This is 2013 - no law says that you must move in with or marry a new partner. Plenty of long term relationships exist in two households...
Good luck!

ETA: sorry for the typos...apparently I cannot spell today.

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answers from Washington DC on


You will be tired of sitting home without any adult conversation.

Do not EVEN THINK about marriage with any guy you date. It's a date, not a marriage. Go out to have fun and get to know each other.

If your divorce is not finalized, then I would hold off on dating. As I don't know how contentious your husband may or may not be. I remember that he moved out of state, but still, people can get pretty vindictive when the marriage is over.

Go out to have fun, have adult conversation....nothing more...

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answers from Dallas on

You will know when you're ready to date. I was married for over 20 years when I divorced. The marriage ended and we were separated for 2 years before the divorce was final. I was personally ready to start dating a few months after the divorce was final, but I wasn't necessarily ready for a "relationship." I just had fun dating and meeting some nice guys who I now consider to be great friends. Make a list of the qualities you want in a future mate and then don't deviate from them. You deserve to have what you want and there is a guy out there that contains all of those qualities. Move slow when you're ready and don't introduce your children until you are positive that whoever you're dating is "the one." I dated my SO for almost 2 years before we introduced our children. Again, take it slow. Learn from your failed relationship. Don't settle. Enjoy your single time and learn to have fun and be content with just you.

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answers from Dallas on

I didnt even consider dating for a full year after my ex and i seperated. After my divorce was final ( a full year after we seperated) i decided i was ready to start dating again. It was only a few months after that i met my boyfriend and we have been together for 9 months now.

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