5 Tips for When You're Newly Divorced and Thinking About Dating
May 26, 2020 | By: Bethesda Dating Photographer - Irene Abdou Photography, LLC
Today, we asked Maryland family law attorney extraordinaire, Dorothy Fait, to share her top five dating tips for the newly divorced with our Rockville dating photography clients, based on her decades of experience as a family law attorney.
Dorothy has been practicing law in Maryland for over 30 years and is the founding partner of Fait & DiLima, LLP. She was admitted to the Maryland Bar in 1973, the U.S. Supreme Court in 1977, and the U.S. Court of Appeals, Fourth Circuit in 1979. Dorothy received her J.D. from the University of Maryland and is a graduate of George Washington University. Dorothy is a member of the Montgomery County, Frederick County, DC, Maryland/Montgomery Women’s, Maryland State and American Bar Associations. Dorothy has been recognized repeatedly for her contributions to the community and legal profession (view her full bio with all her many achievements here).
So if you're recently divorced and thinking about dating, read on!
When Should I Consider Dating Again?
By Dorothy Fait
As a practicing family law attorney for over 30 years, one of the questions my clients often ask me after a divorce is, "when do you think should I should consider dating again?" The statistics on divorce after a second marriage trend higher than first marriages. I think this is so because some people seem to be in a rush to re-couple. While the timing for each person will be different, what I can say is that if you feel you are emotionally ready to start dating again I encourage you to consider the following tips as you move forward.
First and foremost, are you ready?
Divorce is hard and sometimes traumatic and while it can be tempting to start dating soon after a divorce, it can cause more emotional damage if you're not ready. Give it some time. Assess your feelings and, if necessary, talk to a therapist or a good friend about your desire to date. It's important to make sure you're not feeling sorry for yourself and that you've resolved your feelings about your previous relationship.
Be safe + use your instincts
You'll probably use a variety of methods to meet potential dates with online dating likely to be one of the primary sources for meeting new people. Online dating is an amazing tool and it can be exciting when you connect with someone you think you like, but I encourage you to take it slow. Resist the urge to share any personal details too soon as a lot can be found out about you with information like your full name, address and phone number. As you connect with potential dates through messages, texts and phone calls ask yourself if everything seems okay and trust your instincts if something seems off. Finally, when you decide you like someone enough to meet them in person, always pick a public place for your initial meeting. If you have property or receive alimony from the divorce; you can let it be known that you would not marry again without a Pre-Nuptial Agreement in place.
Mention, but don't introduce your kids right away
If you have children, save yourself from possible heartache and reveal that you have children in your dating profile. You don't want to meet the "perfect" person only to find out later that they don't want to bond with your children. And while it's important to reveal that you have children to your potential dates, it's not advised to involve your kids in the relationship until you've been dating exclusively for at least six months. Often by that point, mutual trust has been established as well as an agreement that the relationship is significant.
Keep money exchanges out of any new relationship
Because money can be a tricky topic no matter what the relationship, I recommend refraining from any money exchanges when dating someone new. Further if you meet someone online and they "can't video chat," but ask you to do them a "favor" that involves any form of monetary exchange, report them to the site you are using and possibly the police. Unfortunately scammers are out there on dating sites, but if you take it slow and use your instincts you should be fine.
**COVID specific tip**
Finally, Covid-19 has put a wrench in all of our plans and made dating and meeting new people especially difficult. That said, it has created space for “remote daters” to get to know each other through phone calls and video chats. The most important thing is your health, both mental and physical. Take that into consideration as you move from virtual to real life. If you both decide you feel comfortable meeting in person, make sure you are following the latest local guidelines (i.e mask protocols, socially distancing, etc.) to keep yourself and others safe.
Questions about alimony, child custody/support, domestic violence, enforcement, prenups, postnups, or other family law matters?