Dating After a Divorce


Dear Lisa,

I’m 32 years old and I’m just getting back in the dating game after a divorce.  I was married for seven years.  My divorce was final in January.  I haven’t had any trouble getting dates.  However, I do have trouble getting second dates.  I must be doing something terribly wrong, because most of the time I’m just not getting a call back.  At first I figured I was just out of practice.  However, it’s been several weeks and several dates and I’ve only had three guys even so much as send a text message afterwards.   Out of more than 15 first dates, I’ve only had one second.

My friends seem to like me.  I don’t think I’m that aweful.  However, I’m beginning to get very discouraged.  I feel like calling a couple of these guys and asking them straight up what I did wrong.  However, at this point I’m feeling a little too fragile for that kind of honesty.


Sadie, Toronto

Dear Sadie,

I’m going to be honest.  This is my second shot at answering your email.  The first time around I listed lots of statistics about dating and helpful tips for nailing a first date and you know what?  It was all bad advice.

Well, it was good advice, but bad advice for you.  There are lots of reasons women want to get back to dating after a divorce.  However, if you are rushing back in, and you are, none of those reasons are good ones.

Maybe you’re bored.
Maybe you want to feel noticed or validated.
Maybe you’re looking to “get over someone by getting under someone else”.
Maybe your friends and family are pushing you.
Maybe you are lonely.
Maybe you just think you “should”.

I don’t know why you want to date.  I do know that you probably aren’t ready.  I like to see women take a full year after a divorce for themselves.  It doesn’t always happen.  To be honest, I didn’t take nearly that long after mine before I was dating again.  In my experience, personally, I rushed I made costly mistakes.

It’s March.  Your divorce was final in January.  Girlfriend, you need more time.  You need time to experience yourself as single.  You need time to process the loss of the marriage you’d planned.  You need time to rest.  You need time to get to know yourself again.  I don’t know why your marriage ended, but I know this wasn’t what you’d planned for yourself.  There is a loss.

You need time.
Take it.
You may never get time to yourself like this again.

I’m not suggesting you stay home alone all the time and cry yourself to sleep every night.  I am suggesting you do that some of the time.  I’d also suggest you get out with your friends.  Make new ones.  Travel.  Take some classes.  Learn to live a life your married friends will envy.

When you’ve nailed that, you’ll be ready to date and trust me, you won’t have any trouble getting second, third, and fourth dates.  When you love being single so much you kind of wonder why you’d want to date, you’re ready, and not before.  Don’t rush.  It doesn’t pay. 

With love~

Lisa Hayes

The Love Whisperer


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