Divorced men with children are in the “do not touch” category of dating. I wish I read Jonathon Ashlay's in-depth article on the dangers of dating divorced men before I said yes to a date with one. Sure it sounds limiting but divorced single parents should just stick with each other. They are in the same boat and are dealing with the same complexities inherent in their situation. I came to that conclusion in 2008 when my engagement ended. Now, after signing off digital dating and offline dating for good, I’ve decided to spend the next year getting my life ready for someone else. I’m going to follow in the footsteps of Monica Cruz, Penelope’s sister, and achieve pregnancy with an anonymous sperm donor.
In 2005 I met Henning. At the time Henning was still legally separated from his then soon-to-be ex-wife Laura. Henning and Laura met in their early 20’s and their relationship lasted 12 years before it broke apart. In the aftermath was their three-year-old son Jason who was confused at his parents’ divorce. My hesitation to become involved with Henning lasted until a year after his divorce was finalized. I gave him the benefit of the doubt when he said he was over it. Henning really did want to be beyond the pain, guilt, betrayal, and longing from Laura. He wasn’t. He needed more time.
Henning came into my life a year after I had a miscarriage. The irony. Once upon a time I had an accidental pregnancy when kids were the last thing on my mind. Back then I was in a three year relationship with Geoffrey, someone I would never marry and vice versa. We were fine with that. Geoffrey was transfered to Hong Kong when the British bank he worked for gave him a promotion. Two months after he moved I found out I was pregnant when I awoke to very bad cramps only to discover I was miscarrying.
Unfortunately, time ran out for Henning and I because I had to make a choice to move to California. So I relocated which meant leaving Henning behind because I couldn’t wait till his heart was whole and in one piece again. In my own sadness for time not being on our side my heart went on ice as if it were frozen and suspended. In that state it felt neither pain nor joy as it was inanimate. You see, when I left Henning for the last time and boarded a West bound plane the last words I uttered was: Go Back to Your Wife.
I arrived in California to start a new life and swore that I’d never be interested in a divorced man who had kids. Divorced but without children was fine. Widower with or without children was fine too. Anything but a divorced man who was a parent because single parents are better off dating each other. For four years I was true to my words and my heart remained frozen. Then Divine humor intervened and I forgot that someone I met was in the category that I swore off of.