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Dating after a divorce is like learning to dance again.  Either you know how to do it or you forgot.  And now you’re faced with something you might not want to do.  But hey, you’re here and it happens.

There is no question that jumping back in the dating scene after being married for many years can be stressful (to say the least).  Now you look older, you might not feel like it doing this all over again, and you might have lost some of your dating skills.  The idea of going out on a date with someone new, fearing rejection, or getting your ego stomped doesn’t sound appealing, does it?  We are not going to sugarcoat it, it’s definitely challenging.  In order to make your post-divorce dating experience an easier one, our Pittsburgh professional matchmakers have compiled a guide to help you date after your divorce.  It won’t be easy but it will be worth it.

1. Get Acknowledgement

The first step in opening your heart to love is for you to start loving yourself.  If your self-esteem is in the gutters, find a couple of good friends and ask them what things they love about you.  It might feel awkward in the beginning, but believe us, you need to do it so you can remember all the things you’re good at.

2. Let Go of the Gremlins

The little voice inside your head wants you to stay small and feel inferior.  It doesn’t want you to open your heart, it wants you to feel pain.  In order to tackle your gremlins, you need to identify them when they show up.  Noticing will be your first step.  Once you notice those negative little voices, you will realize that it’s not you, it’s just voices that go on inside your head.  Quiet them as soon as you hear them.  Send them away while you get your heart ready for love.

3. Get in Shape

After the initial grieving period of your divorce, our Pittsburgh professional matchmakers don’t want you to stay at home.  Get out and work out regularly because the endorphins you will get will make you feel great.  Your workout regimen doesn’t have to be extreme or cost an arm and a leg.  You can find a running or biking partner and go out in the evenings.  The most important thing is that you find something that works with your schedule and is good for you.

4. Do the Things You Enjoy

Is there a hobby you neglected since you were married?  Now is the time to tackle painting, horseback riding, or photography, or maybe take the vacation you always wanted to take.  You will become busy with the things you enjoy doing, which will take your mind off the pain you’re feeling from your divorce.

5. Take Your Time with Dating

Our Pittsburgh professional matchmakers don’t want you to jump back into the dating world until you have completely healed yourself from your divorce.  After any long term relationship that has come to an end, there is going to be a certain amount of time needed away from dating.  We recommend you to take as long as you need.  If you begin the dating process without properly healing yourself, you will be jumping into a rebound relationship.  Rebound relationships are not healthy for anyone.  On the other hand, a healthy you will be a healthy relationship.

6. Better Your Intuition

When you get back to the dating world again, you need to balance your head and your heart.  Your intuition is an essential tool, so don’t look away if you notice a red flag.  Let your intuition help you make the right choices.  Look for compatibility rather than outside looks.

7. What Type of Partner Do You Want?

Now that you’re ready to get back in the dating world again, you’ll want to know how to sift through potential candidates.  In order to do this, you’re going to have to know exactly what you want from a partner and a relationship.  Make a list of your top five must-have qualities.  For example, do you want someone hardworking, family-oriented, respectful, and kind and caring?

Think of who your future partner will be and how they will make you feel.  For example, if you want a partner who is going to make you feel safe, you’re going to look for a partner who is financially responsible.  Once you have a list, you will become much better at picking a partner.  If someone doesn’t have your top must-haves, then the relationship is not going to work.

8. Pace Yourself

If you meet someone who catches your fancy, our Pittsburgh professional matchmakers recommend you take time dating them.  Don’t spend hours on the phone every day, and no matter how attractive they are, don’t get intimate before the relationship is serious.  Value yourself by reserving your most precious parts until the relationship is serious.  Don’t let yourself get pressured into doing anything you’re not comfortable with.  Remember, the right person will be willing to wait, while the wrong person will walk away right away.

9. Sex Complicates Things

Once you sleep with someone your expectations can change.  No matter if you think so or not, you will become vulnerable.  This is why our Pittsburgh professional matchmakers recommend taking baby steps when it comes to intimacy.  Let the relationship develop first before you take such a big step.  We want you to make it important and special, not just something with someone you’ve seen a few times.

10. Know the Deal Breakers

Okay, so we’ve told you to decide on your top must-haves, but you also need a list of non-negotiables.  If you’re not able to relocate, you can’t be with a partner in a long distance relationship.  Don’t get involved with someone because you believe you can change them.  Your heart will most likely be broken if you enter into a relationship this way.

A healthy relationship is one where there is mutual trust and respect.  You will feel like you learn as much as you teach.  If those components are missing, we encourage you to keep on looking.  Don’t give up your heart, take time, and choose wisely.  And remember, if you’re looking for true love, our Pittsburgh professional matchmakers can help you on your search.

If you’re ready to take on the Pittsburgh dating scene again, contact our matchmaking professionals here at Pittsburgh Singles Matchmaking Service today and let us help you on your search!