Divorce cases are common in the United States. Upwards of 45 percent of marriages in America end in divorce, according to the United Nations. Many first time marriages don’t last for more than ten years, averaging only four to eight years. Some couples agree to divorce when they fall out of love, but there are many reasons for cause. Most of us will struggle to get through divorce at some point in time. But, here are a few tips on how to move on after divorce.
Reconnect With Yourself
Many people lose touch of their own identity after they spend years in a marriage. It is normal for spouses to mirror one another and take on each others likes and dislikes. But, you need to start over after divorce and reconnect with yourself. Study your dislikes and likes as an individual. Do not consider other people’s opinions about them. For example, you might have gotten used to making a certain meal for your spouse which you didn’t like. Start preparing dishes that you enjoy and have fun again.
Everyone has hobbies and passions. Some people spend little time on their hobbies once they get married. Instead, use your free time to indulge in activities which you like. It could be reading novels, cycling or hiking. People who keep themselves busy after divorce often recover faster than those who have nothing better to do than to reminisce about their failed relationship and divorce.
Develop new habits. Many people discover new abilities and talents after divorce. Also, they start taking new roles such as shopping for their children. You might have to apply for a job if your ex-spouse was the sole breadwinner. New habits help you get out of comfort zone. Besides, they teach you new skills which can help you get a lucrative job. Try new things to improve your confidence and self-esteem. You can even travel and visit new places to find happiness after divorce. Therapists recommend vacations to divorced spouses to identify their likes and dislikes, and take a break from the same old routine you’ve had for years.
Rebuild Your Life
Starting over after divorce is necessary to live a happy life. Set achievable goals to motivate yourself. They can be short and long-term targets which you intend to achieve after a certain period. Write out the goals and break them down into daily targets. For instance, you might want to improve your credit score. Repay existing debts and cut down your expenses to improve your current financial position.
Most divorce cases are quite expensive. The law may require you to pay child support, alimony, and of course your legal fees. Create a budget for your household’s expenditure and set up an emergency fund. It is important to learn how to create and manage a financial plan, especially if part of your income has now dwindled. You can consult an experienced financial planner to guide you on how to manage your assets and income.
Some friendships end after divorce especially if you had mutual friends with your ex-spouse. Attend social gatherings to meet and interact with other people. It is necessary to maintain your social circle (or create a new one). Besides, you can take part in many new types of events such as boating, walking, painting and even mountain climbing with your friends.
You may enroll in a nutrition course to learn how to make balanced meals. Divorce causes stress for most people. It is important to eat nutritious meals which help you ward off stress and the weight gain that might come from it. Exercise for half an hour, three days a week and ensure that you sleep for eight hours daily. Avoid indulging in binge drinking or gambling which both can be more harmful than many other things.
Bond with Your Children
Many working parents spend little time with their children. Some of them work far from home while others get back to their houses late at night. Divorce affects children too. Create a structure to help both you and them adjust to life after divorce. You should involve your children for them to understand your daily routine. Consider signing them up for curricular activities in school or community organizations for children. Develop new traditions on how you will spend your weekends. They might include a visit to nearby game parks, family night outs or short vacations upcountry. My children and I had “best burger” or “best pizza” nights. Try someplace new each week to find the very best of the very best.
Spend more time with your kids to help them move on after divorce. Ask each child to tell you about their hobbies. Take them out for a family dinner or picnic to bond together. You can read story books or watch movies with them to pass the time. It is prudent to build a healthy relationship with them without disparaging the other parent. Do not argue with your ex-spouse in front of your children. This will cause more harm than good and is very hard to recover from.
People with busy schedules struggle to adapt to being single parents. Ask a trusted family member or friend to perform some household responsibilities for you. They can babysit your child or clean the house when you are away. Parenting in a two parent household is tough enough, but now when it all falls upon you after a divorce it can easily become overwhelming.
Starting over after divorce isn’t a piece of cake. It takes time to transform your life. Many people need support after divorcing their spouses. A reliable support system can help you get over the divorce fast. Spend more time with family and friends who influence you positively. You can develop a new tradition with them such as going for picnics on weekends. It will help you be optimistic and remain focused on achieving your goals.
Some online support groups offer genuine advice to divorcees. Inquire whether there is a support group in your neighborhood. Many divorced persons join such groups as they offer a sense of belonging. They assure you that other people are also facing similar challenges. Research online for a divorce support group which can enlighten you on how to move on after divorce. Some churches and community centers sponsor support groups as well.
Visit a therapist if you can’t find a divorce support group. You can express your emotions, opinions, and thoughts to therapists since they are unbiased. Besides, the Code of Ethics on Confidentiality in Psychotherapy and Counselling prohibits therapists from disclosing sensitive information they get from clients. Ask for recommendations of the best therapist from your close friends who have also become divorced.
Date after Divorce
Divorce is a stressful experience for many people. Some people remain single for the rest of their lives while others date again after a while. Take time to heal before you start dating after divorce. We present to you 12 things to consider to find the right partner after divorce.
- Chemistry Doesn’t Guarantee Long-term Commitment
Most people get attached to strangers due to lust. Thus, it is wise to select people who you can develop close relationships with. It is normal to feel lonely after divorce. Some people fall in love again too soon to fill the void their ex-spouses left. Research reveals that most divorced persons think that chemistry is the most crucial element to find the right partner. Yet, it is necessary to go on several dates to build trust, too.
- Get Over Your Ex
Some people rush into new relationships before they’ve gotten over a divorce. Most of them end up treating their lovers the same way they would handle their ex-spouses. Different people need varying periods to start dating after divorce. You need to be emotionally stable before you fall in love again. Forgive your ex for the pain they caused you in the past and stop resenting them. Also, don’t date to please your family and friends.
- Set Dating Expectations
Do not assume that your next date will end up in marriage. Instead, have an open mind to avoid setting unrealistic expectations on your admirer. Take it as an opportunity to discover new things about your life and ways to improve your love life. Most relationships after divorce are rebounds. Divorced persons are usually skeptic about the future of their next dates. They assume that they won’t have challenges. Each relationship is different. Do not compare a new lover to your ex. Take time to learn their character, strengths, and weaknesses.
- Date for the Right Reasons
Some people date to avoid anger, hurt and loneliness. You should date because you want it rather than you need to have a lover. Also, you need to get ready to commit to your partner for the relationship to last long.
- Be Wary of People without Imperfections
Every person has specific imperfections. However, admirers who want to exploit you emotionally and financially tend to appear to be too perfect. They might give you gifts and make amazing promises. Such people are determined to win your trust to manipulate you.
- Have a Relationship Map
Analyze the progress you have made so far in your life after divorce and draft a relationship map of how you would want it to be in the future. Contemplate all of the costly mistakes you made in the past and avoid repeating them in your new relationship. Also, check your relationship goals. You can ask a close friend to review the relationship map for you.
- Be Open-Minded while Dating
Change is inevitable in everybody’s life. You wouldn’t want to continue living the same lifestyle you had ten years ago. Many people have a certain character that they look for in a relationship partner. It is wise to be open-minded to get a caring and committed lover. Avoid falling in love with someone who has the flaws your ex had.
- Lock Your Bank Accounts
Sensitive issues such as health and finance cause many divorces in the country. Many old spouses don’t talk about them to one another. It is necessary to discuss such issues while dating. Senior citizens value their retirement accounts. Be honest to your lover and inform them about your current financial position. It will help you agree on how to manage your assets and income.
- Online Dating
Online dating is common in the U.S. Divorced persons meet and interact with strangers in hundreds of dating sites. Even so, there is a drastic increase in the number of dating fraudsters. Most of them approach naïve web users and profess their feelings to them. For example, an online admirer might claim that they are deeply in love with you, yet you only met a few days ago. They might check up on you daily and send different gifts to win your trust.
Dating fraudsters appear to be flawless. You might start trusting them soon and share your secrets with them. An admirer might ask for financial support claiming that they are in a life-threatening situation. Be cautious and avoid sending money to strangers. Yet, you can get a lifetime spouse from online dating sites so it isn’t all bad.
- Don’t Rush the First Date
Take time before you go on a date with this new person. Constant communication is necessary to build trust with them. Besides, you might learn the motive of a partner if you ask them to wait until you are ready for intimacy. Women who are in their menopause or perimenopause stages struggle to find loving partners. People who share similar relationship goals often maintain their marriages for much longer.
Be attentive to your partner during the first date. Your partner will be more open to you if you listen to them. Relationship therapists advise divorced persons to look out for weird things which a partner might have done to their lovers in the past. Avoid dating violent people.
- Trust Your Gut
Don’t ignore your instincts if you feel that something is amiss in your first date. You might be falling in a trap. If your conscience tells you that your partner is sincere, tell them that you would like to go out with them again. Figure out the deal breakers in your relationship. All relationships have imperfections. They need both partners to dedicate their time for them to work out.
- Inform Your Partner that You Have Children
State in your dating profile that you are a single parent with a certain number of kids. Many people leave out their kids when dating online. They believe that they will scare off admires if they disclose it to them. Inform your lover about your kids during the first date. It will help you determine whether they are interested in a long-term relationship or not.
Many people get depressed after divorce. It is hard to let go of someone you’ve loved and lived with for a long time. Some people take alcohol to forget about the divorce. Even so, it is advisable to exercise and eat right to keep fit as you learn how to move on after divorce.
Find Happiness After Divorce
You can do this as many others have done, too. Life will go on and someday soon you’ll look back on this time and be thankful for the good things.