Last year, I went through a divorce, which ended a marriage that lasted more than 22 years. I met my husband on a colleague, and seeing I came from a small community, our relationship quickly turned into an engagement. One year after we first met, we were married. We had a stable, loving marriage for two decades. Then, we sent our only daughter to a good school, but at the same time we slowly started to grow apart. This distance between us kept increasing, until we finally decided to separate. Now, I am single once again, but I’m not sure how to approach my future emotional life. I am now 43 years old, and in good shape (a lot of running during the previous period helped me to deal with the stress), so I do get noticed by men. I feel interested in other people, but at the same time I feel like something is blocking me. The problem is that I don’t know how I should start dating again without feeling lost or conflicted.
Madison from the City of Dayton, Ohio.
Madison, the feelings you described are completely normal, having in mind the life you led before you got divorced. Here is some dating advice which should prove helpful for your current emotional predicament.
You were in a certain relationship for a long time, and every dating advice should be aware of this. 22 years is not something that can be forgotten or erased from memory, so it is definitely expected that you feel a range of negative feelings about dating, which can include guild, anger or embarrassment. Accept these feelings, but know that they are not the only things you feel. When you think about going out on a date, accept that you feel insecure and leave it at that. At the same time, think about all the positive things you are feeling like excitement in the form of well-known tummy butterflies. Try to focus on these types of feelings.
Now is the Right Time.
You will wonder when is the right time to accept an invitation for a diner or a drink after work. The answer is simple – you are ready right now. The fact that you are wondering about these things is proof that you feel you are ready to introduce someone new in your life. Without accepting these offers and seeing what comes next, any dating advice is useless. Of course, this does not mean that you should rush your decision or choices because you have all the time you need.
Know What you are Looking For.
You should be aware of your short-term desires. If you are interested in a passing relationship, you should be conscious of this fact. On the other hand, if you’re interested in something much more permanent, this fact should also be noted in your emotional plans. Don’t feel pressured by these desires, but be aware of them whatever they might be.
Sexuality is Welcomed.
Sexuality as a global phenomenon changed a lot in the last two decades, so you shouldn’t be shocked by those changes. You will probably like some of them and dislike others, but you shouldn’t be afraid of your own sexual needs. Most flexible dating advice on this issue is that you should gradually express them to your future partners, but don’t back down from your own needs when it comes to sex.
Probably the best dating advice anyone could give you is to try to stay relaxed about the whole deal. It’s clear that you have many questions about this process, but know that these will be slowly resolved once you begin to date and meet new people. If you go through this process in a calm and relaxed manner, you will be able to enjoy it first of all, which is the entire point of dating.