MSN article: Dating After Divorce
From MSN...the last sentence is particularly true:
Dating After Divorce By Brent Turnbull
Go ahead and hitch up your britches -- and get back in the saddle again.
Recently divorced singles get the cold sweats when thinking about dating again for the first time. It's not surprising. Jumping back into the dating pool is a big step. The good news is that you're not alone. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, one-half of all first marriages fail in today's society. With all of those newly minted singles on the market, stepping out is a much easier prospect than it once was. So never fear, hitch up your britches and get back in the saddle again.
Fools Rush In
It's important to get out there and start dating but don't dive right into the deep end. Divorce is a trying emotional experience and you need time to heal. Well-meaning friends will encourage you to hit the scene right away, but you should only take their advice when you know you're ready. Besides, rushing your re-entry into the dating scene sometimes does more harm than good, since rejection or a bad date can have a deeper negative impact than not dating at all.
Get a New Crowd
Well, not literally, but remember that your old friends carry their share of baggage when it comes to you and relationships. Their emotional investment in your old partnership clouds their judgment and they probably think you can only be happy in another relationship. Instead, you need to spend some time getting back in touch with yourself. Besides, you've got some serious browsing to do! So, without abandoning old friends, add some new single ones to your roster, hit the town, and party it up. They'll likely be in the same mindset (let's cause some mischievousness!) and will give you positive feedback about your forays into this exciting new world.
Make a List and Check it Twice
We all learn from mistakes, and learning from past relationships is no exception. Take a moment to figure out what you do and don't want in your next fling. Making a list keeps it fresh in your mind, and having it in black and white makes it feel concrete and achievable. It also allows you to periodically check in on your progress and keep your dating on track. "Yep, I was right. Guys who collect Star Wars salt and pepper shakers are not on my list."
Give Your Palm Pilot a Workout
The world is full of sexy, interesting singles, but as a new member of this group you may crave the security and comfort of your old relationship. In this state of mind, it's natural to feel that the first person who comes along is Mr. Right, even if they're really Mr. Wrong. Do yourself a favor and take the time to date lots of people. As the saying goes, "There's plenty of fish in the sea." Throw back the small ones and, if you feel lost or overwhelmed, simply refer to your list. Remember, deciding you're ready to date is a much harder step than actually dating. So get out there and just do it!
Know When You've Got it Good
You made a list, you've dated some sexy singles, and finally one came along that fits the bill perfectly. So why can't you seem to fully enjoy the relationship? You have to let yourself trust again. It takes time, effort, and risk, but if you've found the one, the reward is worth it. Have faith that you've made the right decision. After all, ultimately the only person who knows what's best for you is... you.