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Rules for dating after divorceDating again after a divorce — even a stress-free, amicable online divorce — can be a difficult thing, and the level of difficulty can fluctuate from one phase of recovery to another.

You may go through times when it’s easy to attract the opposite sex, but things immediately fall apart whenever you try to be physically and/or emotionally intimate.

Other times, the drive may be there to share who you are with another person, but the connection isn’t mutual. This is natural fallout from the process of signing divorce papers.

To navigate this tricky time, you should try to keep key pieces of marital/relationship advice in mind. Even though you may be going on your first date with someone you met online, it helps to have an overview of what makes a healthy relationship.

Rule No. 1: Forget Rules 

Rules were developed to bring about order in a society. However, relationships are not always orderly, and according to professional matchmaker and author Hellen Chen, trying to make them so, can cause trouble.

“There are many Do’s and Don’ts marriage rules being talked about in marriage literature,” Chen said. “But actually, too many rules will stress the relationship out even more and aid the breakup.”

Rule No. 2: It’s Okay To Be Different

Couples also have a tendency to think something is wrong because they are capable of having fun independently without need for their partner’s participation in a preferred activity.

To this, Chen acknowledges that “some couples quarrel over celebration of holidays like Valentine’s Day. One wants to be romantic. And the other one has no desire to do so. Who says that no celebration means there is no love?”

Chen, who has been married more than 20 years, said that her husband “likes to go out into the sun,” while she prefers “to stay indoors.”

“His eating habits are very different than mine. So what is the rule? No rule. We do what we each like. And still find plenty of ways to love each other. … There is no rule in love.”

Rule No. 3: Focus On Showing Love To Your Partner

Former President John F. Kennedy is probably the last person you’d ever want to take marital advice from, but for Chen, his “ask not what your country can do for you” line reflects a lot of truth when it comes to forming a happy bond, and we would agree.

“The key point is this: ask not what the other partner could do for you, ask what you could do for your partner and ask how you could improve yourself at the same time,” Chen said.

Self-improvement is an important part of recovery after you’ve gone through the whole process of how to file for divorce, but it doesn’t end with your new relationship. Take the breakup of any relationship as a chance to learn and grow emotionally, and don’t enter into a serious commitment until you’re ready to give of yourself to someone else.

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