If you’re thinking about dating a recently divorced man, there are a few things you should know. For instance, it can be challenging to gain his trust. After all, he’s been through a lot and may be feeling a bit gun-shy when it comes to opening up again.
That being said, if you’re patient and willing to work at it by following the steps listed in this article, there’s a good chance you can create a lasting relationship. However, remember that you cannot afford to make mistakes or slip-offs as the slightest detail could raise red flags and push your recently divorced date to shut down. If you’re going to be with someone that is probably still wounded, sad or disappointed then you have to do it properly by following the step-by-step we provide you with here.
This way you don’t find yourself letting him slip away from between your fingers and at the same time, you make sure you don’t come across as desperate or sell yourself short!
5 steps to date a recently divorced man:
1. Understand that he may not be ready to commit:
If you’re thinking about dating a recently divorced man, you have to consider that he may still be getting over his previous relationship. He may be feeling wounded, and vulnerable, and may have become a little overcautious with the opposite gender. He’s just gotten out of a relationship, after all, and he may need some time to get his bearings.
He’s been through the wringer, so it’s only fair that he may be hesitant to jump into another relationship right away. A recently divorced man may not be entirely sure what he’s looking for in a new partner. He may want to take things slow, or he may be ready to jump into a new relationship with both feet. Either way, it’s important to be patient and understand that he might need some time to adjust. If he has just been divorced, he probably doesn’t even know what he’s looking for yet. After being married for a while, it can be tough to get back out there and start meeting new people. He may not be sure what he wants in a relationship, or even if he wants a relationship again especially so soon.
Additionally, he’s probably still trying to figure out what went wrong in his marriage, as he would want to avoid making the same mistake in future relationships. Plus he would also want to know if he’s the one to blame or if it was all his ex-partner’s fault as he would’ve probably convinced himself of such a thing at first; if the divorce wasn’t amicable.
Even if he doesn’t intend to date again or remarry any time soon he will still reflect often on what went wrong and what were a few red flags that he didn’t catch early enough to save his marriage. So, based on this alone if you’re patient and understanding, a recently divorced man can still be a great catch. But if you’re looking for something easier, long-term, and reassuring for you then you might want to keep looking.
2. Have boundaries and put your foot down when they get crossed:
A divorce can be a very emotional time for someone, and it’s important to make sure that you’re not going to be taken advantage of or even taken for granted when you’re dating a recently divorced man. Such a date may require extra care and be too focused on his own needs and wants, which is understandable as he would have gone through something so difficult recently.
For this reason, it’s important to have standards and not let him use your kindness and availability as he sees fit. Even if you go out of your way to please him and even if you’re willing to help him through such a period he should not be entitled or demanding with you. You should only continue to show your support if he shows his appreciation and gratefulness. If he becomes too pressurizing and difficult to please then you’ll have to stand your ground and tell him that you’re there to help by choice and that you can’t stay if you’re not valued.
Just because someone is going through a tough time doesn’t mean that you should lower your standards or allow them to walk all over you. Be firm and honest with yourself about what you’re looking for in a relationship, and don’t settle for anything less. By following this simple piece of advice, you can ensure that such a relationship will be healthy and happy.
Remember that a lot of heterosexual men like to do a lot for their partners by nature. Most of them enjoy being providers or heroes and they like to help the opposite gender out of trouble and be protective of them. So when the role is reversed and you start doing all of this for him without getting much in return, he may want to start looking for someone else to be able to restore his masculinity. He may friendzone you or not be able to perceive you as a long-term serious partner. That’s because he’d prefer to find someone with whom he can feel accomplished by being the giver and having her be the receiver.
3. Don’t be surprised if his ex resurfaces in his life:
Thirdly, keep in mind that a man that recently got divorced probably keeps his ex in his life. She may drop by his house unexpectedly or show up at family gatherings. If you’re uncomfortable with this, it’s important to communicate your feelings early on. With a little patience and understanding, you may get him to move on fully from his past relationship and focus on you alone.
However, you have to consider that the complete opposite could also happen and he could rekindle the flame with his ex-partner or get back together in the end despite all your efforts. After all, don’t forget that they got married previously because they had so much in common and got along to some extent before things fell apart. All this also suggests that you should be prepared for the fact that he may have some baggage and not be ready to make any promises or commitments. So don’t be surprised if he contradicts himself or if he implies that he’s ready for something meaningful only to change his mind a few days later.
What’s worse is that you may find yourself competing with his ex for his time and attention. Even though they’re no longer together, she may still play an important role in his life; especially if they have children together. So, if you’re dating a recently divorced man, be prepared for some challenges. But if you’re up for the task, it can be a rewarding experience to know that you helped someone heal, move on, be able to trust again, and find happiness again.
4. Be ready to support him emotionally when needed:
Fourthly, a recently divorced man may need your support as he deals with the aftermath of his divorce. You have to always remind yourself that he may be different from the other single men you’ve dated. He may be more guarded and less trusting. This means that he may need time to learn to trust again as explained earlier. If this man is a perfect match for you or your soulmate though, you may find that dating him can be a beautiful self-growth journey for both of you.
Even though we recommended earlier not to lower your standards or be taken for granted, you may still need to show him a lot of emotional support from time to time. So if you can’t handle these things, or don’t want to spend some time reassuring your partner and proving yourself to him at times then you may not be able to create a real bond with him.
This type of man may need a little extra effort and evidence to see that he can put his patched-up heart in your hands after it has just been broken. So be patient, and kind, and remember that you have to be prepared for some bumps along the way.
5. Make him earn your while and mirror your efforts too:
Finally, if you’re dating a recently divorced man, chances are he’s going to need some help healing as we explained extensively earlier. However, that doesn’t mean you should suppress your own needs or stop focusing on your own life to put him back on his feet.
You have to make him earn your while too and make him mirror your efforts. You’re not his therapist, you’re his girlfriend. And if he can’t handle that, then maybe he’s not ready to be dating again. So while it’s important to be supportive and understanding, you shouldn’t forget about your own needs in the process. After all, he’s not the only one who has problems or can be going through a tough time.
You’ll have to make sure he treats you like a queen, because if you don’t then nobody else will double-check for you. He should be doing sweet things for you like any other partner, making you feel valued, and treating you with respect. If he can’t do those things, he may only be using you to rebuild his confidence and life without having any serious intentions of moving your relationship to the next level someday. So don’t suppress your own needs in the name of helping him, take care of yourself, too, and don’t accept the bare minimum.
Of course, we’re not saying that you should compete with his kids, if he has any, over his time and attention. But, he should definitely be able to give you the importance and value you deserve too!