If you are in the dating scene and thinking about dating a divorced woman, it’s important that you know what you are looking for, though this can be a difficult task for many. When it comes to our relationship desires, often our wants come from what we’ve experienced in our past and our hopes based on what we haven’t experienced, but want to. Too often we can carry what wasn’t complete from our previous relationships into our next. As you enter a new relationship, especially with a divorced woman, it’s important that you are clear on their expectations but also clear about your own. Dating can be a big step for a divorced woman. Just as they are working on leaving their past behind, it’s important that you also come into the relationship patient, with an open mind and an open heart. Before you commit, here are seven questions to ask yourself before dating a divorced woman.
1. Are they legally divorced?
Though it may seem like this question is a no brainer, you would be surprised how many people, including Christians, get involved in relationships before they are legally divorced. If you respect and value the marriage covenant and want to start the relationship on the best foot, it’s important that their previous relationship is completely through. This means until a legal divorce has taken place, the person is still married, even if they’ve been separated from their spouse for months or years. If that chapter isn’t closed, there’s a lot you will have to prepare for and lot of drama you will deal with. Be prepared for an outcome that may not be what you hoped or planned for.
2. What were the reasons for the divorce?
Were the reasons they divorced related to cheating, finances, abuse, or irreconcilable differences? The reasons may be difficult for them to identify, but it’s important that you are clear about this. While these reasons may not stop you from wanting to date this woman, depending on your personal experiences, your faith, or your vision for your life, you may not agree with the reasons. You should know this before moving forward. The answer to this question may also give you valuable insight into their views of marriage, how they handle conflict and what their plans for a future relationship or marriage are.
3. How much time has passed?
It takes time to heal. Whether the woman initiated the divorce or if it was their choice, it’s important for you to know how much time has passed and if they have healed from it. There are varying opinions about how long healing takes and this is different from person to person. Some believe it takes a year. Others believe it takes several years. This can also depend on the circumstances of the divorce and what steps they have taken to heal from it. All the time in the world may have passed, but that woman may still be hurting.
4. What steps has she taken to heal from the divorce?
Yes, adequate time must pass but healing is just as important. Has this woman spent time participating in professional counseling, mentoring or support groups? These spaces provide a great support network to heal and grow emotionally after the divorce. This also shows they want to do what they can to be whole and complete so they can begin again. It’s key for her to start this process before she starts dating again. She needs to seek personal healing, not just to satisfy your desires.
5. Are you looking to date one person or different individuals at the same time?
If you are only looking to date one person, dating a divorced woman may be a fine track for you. However, if you are looking to date different individuals at the same time, it may not be. If you desire to date multiple people, it’s important that you are clear about this from the beginning. Make sure that you tell her that you’re not interested in a monogamous relationship right now; you are simply interested in dating and having a good time. Put the ball in her court and allow her to decide if this is a path she wants to go down or not. The honest approach always works better.
6. Are you ready for a serious relationship?
When you’re looking for a serious relationship, your approach to dating will be different than when you’re not. Before you begin talking to someone new, define your relationship goals. Ask yourself if you’re ready for a serious relationship and if you’re willing to commit. If you are looking to date around that’s ok, but understand that this may mean that you aren’t ready to get serious with her yet. Again, honesty is the best approach here.
7. Are they ready for a serious relationship?
It’s also important for you to understand what their approach to dating is. If this woman is looking for something casual, their approach may be different than a woman looking for something more serious. Ask your new love interest important questions before going on your first date, the big one being “are you looking for a serious relationship?” This will help you determine if you have similar relationship goals. Most women will share their intentions, especially when they’ve been through a divorce. No games here.
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