3 Basic Rules For Dating After Divorce


Dating After Divorce: What Do I Want In A Relationship?
If you're going to start a new relationship, make it count.

Once divorce is settled, life has become more predictable, and you are feeling ready to open yourself up to meeting new people; the next step is often asking yourself what you want now, why you want it and how you can intentionally create it.

Something is missing though, something invisible. This is the perfect time to take a look at yourself and ask "how have I changed through the divorce process?," "What do I want from relationships now?," and "How is what I want now different from what I've had?" While these inquiries are about future intimate relationships, they are also relevant to all of your current relationships. Knowing what you want and why is a valuable inquiry, yet being able to attract and create it begs an in-between step in self-awareness and action.


A conversation I repeatedly overhear is "There are no good women/men out there; they’ve all been taken." How many times have you heard or engaged in a similar conversation? If it is your intention to create an enjoyable, supportive, loving relationship in the future, it's time to begin looking at the relationships you have now, the stories you've been telling yourself about what's "right" or "wrong" about them, and what's real about who you are in your relationships. Holding others responsible for your upsets and your continual disappointments that "they" don't do things the way things are supposed to be done or do things they shouldn't be doing will only leave you feeling self-righteous, justified and lonely. There is zero chance of creating that enjoyable, supportive, intimate loving relationship ever when one continues to conduct relationships in this manner.

If you are serious about your intention to be in an enjoyable, supportive, loving relationship the good news is that you don't have to wait. You can begin living out your intention right now, transforming who you are in your existing relationships. As you take this on, and there are very basic relationship rules to guide you, you'll become clearer in understanding what you really want and why, and intentional and effective in creating it.

Here are 3 basic ground rules for creating intentional relationships:

  1. People are who they are, not who you want them to be, unless it so happens that who they are and who you want them to be coincide.
  2. People have different perspectives, not right or wrong, simply different.
  3. After a certain age, you are responsible to insure your needs and desires are met, no one else.

So how do these ground rules help now?

  1. By accepting people for who they actually are rather than your fantasy of who you think they should be, you get off their backs and allow them to be themselves without constantly criticizing. You may have already noticed that criticism begets resentment, hostility and withdrawal, not thank you's.
  2. When you can listen to someone from their perspective, you will have a greater understanding of them and create an opening for them to listen to you. Listen, not necessarily agree nor do what you want.
  3. If you are not seeing to it that your needs and desires are met, no one else will — at least not for long. It is up to you to see that your needs are met so you can begin or exit relationships out of independence rather than dependence.

By conducting your existing relationships according to these rules, you will change yourself to the point where you will create relationships that are enjoyable, supportive and loving. Understand this. Practice it. You are preparing yourself to attract, enjoy and nourish what you want in that special relationship around the corner.

Kindness, consideration, and respect are the greatest gifts you can give another human being. Kindness, consideration, and respect are the greatest gifts another human being can give you. Kindness, consideration, and respect are the greatest gifts you can give yourself.

This article was originally published at Journey Beyond Divorce. Reprinted with permission.

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Article contributed by
Advanced Member

Karen McMahon

Divorce Coach

"Within you right now is the power to do things you never dreamed possible. This power becomes available to you just as soon as you can change your beliefs"

- Dr. Maxwell Maltz

Location: Oceanside, NY
Credentials: ACC, CPC, ELI-MP
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