Date a divorced man

Edited by Ephraim, Charmed, Innocent Yogo, Mian Sheilette Ong and 18 others


Have you been wondering how to date a divorce (male), and have a successful relationship? Getting into a relationship with a divorced man is a bit of a package deal with a lot of complications. Many things will be going on with this man. There is always some degree of emotional fallout, there are his children if he has any, who will be a big part of his life, and like it or not, so will his ex-wife. All these aspects of his life will inevitably become tangled in your life, and it will be a challenge to keep these things from ruining your relationship. It's important to consider all aspects of this divorced man's life before you start a relationship with him.

Dating a Divorced Man Guide

Do not begin this relationship by seeing yourself as his ex-wife's competition.

This is not the position you want to find yourself in during the relationship, as it will not only cause you a lot of frustration, but it will frustrate your partner as well. Nor should you feel, in a manner, that you are being compared to his ex-wife, nor should you try to emulate her. Just be yourself. He is interested in you for who you are, not who you can become - least of all his ex. Instead, move forward. Try not to get into lengthy conversations about the relationship he had with his ex. Continually bringing us his ex will add stress to his life, forcing him to remember things he doesn't wish to. It will also create issues between the two of you.

He is dating you for who you are.

Some women doubt they are good enough, seeing herself and his ex as competitors. This is not a competition. You are a person with your own beliefs, perspectives, and opinions, and those things are what attracted him to you. The best way to help him to heal is to enjoy your time together. After going through a divorce, the last thing anyone wants is a new partner introducing new problems. Love each other for who you are, not where you've been, but at the same time, be sensitive. This is a difficult time for him, especially if the divorce is recent. Be yourself. Make sure he is interested in all the things that make up who you are, and not things you believe he wants you to be. There is no way to maintain that kind of charade. Ii always ends badly.

Be understanding and patient with his 'learned' behavior.

Depending on how long he was married, you might find he does things that you find odd or inappropriate. Rather than mock or embarrass him, communicate. Let him know there are things that may have been okay in his marriage, that are not okay with you. At the same time, some of the sweet and adorable things he does, he also might have learned in his marriage. He may try to do things in a different way, and will probably make some mistakes along the way, just as you will make mistakes in a new relationship. Patience is a virtue for a reason.

During discussions regarding him and the ex (if you know details), do not highlight the mistakes he made with her. This won't help, and he probably already knows.

Do not get annoyed when he talks about his previous relationship.

When he talks about his relationship, listen to the things he says as you will probably learn why his marriage failed. Use this to your advantage. It's a fast way to know someone. Do not make it noticeable that you are picking up on these things through his conversations, but in the back of your mind just take notes as this information is vital to the success of your relationship with him. Perhaps you will notice things you don't' agree with or things you might be doing that he doesn't, either way, you'll have more information and tools to keep this relationship on the right track.

Ensure that your relationship with him is not going too fast for comfort.

After a man's divorce, you should wait at least a year before engaging in a relationship with him. Even though you may think he is, he is mostly likely not over his marriage. A year will give him time to be alone and get accustomed to single life and be living on his own again, which is an important transition. Also giving him a year to get himself together will also ensure that the relationship between him and his ex is officially over. It's not unusual for exes to work things out and get back together, not long after splitting up. Also, if you feel overwhelmed by everything he's bringing to the relationship, you might not be ready for this relationship. It's not all about him.

Give him space when he needs it.

A newly divorced man will have a lot going on. He'll have emotional issues ranging from guilt to anger, not to mention the financial issues he'll be dealing with. Look for signs that he needs a little space, and don't make a big deal about it. Don't let it make you insecure. There's a lot on this man's mind. Sometimes he may want to talk about it but at times he may just want to be alone with his thoughts, or talk to a guy friend. Some signs to look for are:

  1. 1
    He doesn't call as much as he used to, although that often happens when a relationship settles
    He doesn't always answer your calls or texts promptly. He doesn't want to go out as often. He seems busier than usual, distracted around you.
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  2. 2
    If you notice any of these, he may need space away from you and the relationship to collect himself
    After a failed marriage, he may be a bit nervous around you - as it's a new relationship. He may be unsure, insecure, and cautious.
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Be understanding if he has kids.

As his new lover, be supportive when it comes to his children if he has any. It's a difficult thing to go from full-time father to part time. Any battles between you and his kids will be a losing one for you. If it is not, he is not as good a man as you hope he is. He should choose his children. There's enough chaos in this situation for everyone. Also, do not discipline his kids. It's not your job. It never will be your job.

If he chooses not introduce you to his kids right away, it may be because he wants to protect his kids from another disappointment. The relationship is new, and neither of you know if it will last. The kids are already dealing with the divorce of their parents, and they may not be ready to meet Dad's new girlfriend. It's important to remember that most kids of divorced parents, still hold out hope they will get back together. Give it time. Allow the relationship to grow stronger, and more secure, and then you can develop a relationship with his children.

Be understanding of his ex-wife even though they are divorced.

He will still need to be in contact with her, for the sake of the kids. Do not get upset when they communicate, as this is something that needs to happen, with or without you in the picture. If you aren't supportive and become jealous, you will only make things worse and jeopardize your own relationship with him. This is the mother of his children, the woman he loved, and you should treat her with respect, even though there may be a conflict between them. It really isn't your business. You cannot live your life afraid. He was with her, now he's with you. His past does not belong to you, only his present and hopefully, his future.

Questions and Answers

How to give a divorced man space?

Keep in mind that the situation with a divorced man is slightly different. His past relationship makes things more complicated and stressful. While divorce does not always mean continuous conflicts and fights with his previous wife, the process of divorce in itself is very challenging. Therefore, taking this into consideration, there are times when you need to give your man a bit of space for him to be able to deal with some of his personal difficulties.

These are some of the things that can be done in order to give a divorced man some space:

  • Do not require that he spend all of your time with you. Respect his personal schedule and be less demanding of his time.
  • Do not expect that he will share all details about his life with you. There are simply areas in his life that may be too sensitive, especially when it relates to his previous relationship. Understand if he does not show openness to talk about these matters with you.
  • Stop interrogating him about the past relationship. Be sensitive enough not to talk about the past, as it may just bring up painful memories he'd rather not deal with. Remember that this relationship is about the two of you and it's not necessary to dwell in the past.
  • When you notice he is distancing himself from you, respect him by giving him the time that he seems to need to be on his own. As much as possible, do not disturb him during these times. Take this opportunity to work on things about yourself instead. Men do not like being bothered when they are processing something. The more time that you give him to deal with his own matters, the faster he'll be able to come back to you feeling refreshed because he has resolved his issues.

Don't call or text him. It will just prove to annoy him. A man, or anyone, needing time, doesn't have much to do with you but has a lot to do with their state of mind.

How to give a divorced guy time to date?

If you are one of the children of a divorced man, and you want to make it easier for him to date, you can give him the time to do so. Don't give him a hard time. He knows he has your love, but it's important for adults to have a partner to love. They can get lonely.

If you're interested in dating a man who's divorced, you might consider befriending him first. If he's interested in dating, he'll let you know - somehow. It's just not wise, in this situation, to be pushy. Let him decide he's ready in his own time. There's a lot of things on his plate. It will be a lot better for you, for him, for your relationship if you are both ready to date.

Comfort your boyfriend while he is going through a divorce.

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They say no one really wins in a divorce. Both parties are bound to be hurt, and everyone involved is damaged to some extent. Emotions are running high, and in most cases, even the memories of the relationship are in tatters. When it comes to conversations, listening, rather that talking is more helpful. Sometimes, when no words are necessary, a long hug, or simply holding he had speaks volumes. As much of a cliché as it sounds, just be there for him, for whatever he needs. This is a stressful and painful time, especially if your boyfriend has kids with his ex-wife.

  • Be there as to support him every step of the way, but don't become his therapist. That could be toxic to your relationship. Be careful, though, not to appear too demanding, especially if he has kids. It will just add to his stress. If this relationship was partly or the entire cause for the divorce, keep a low profile in public. You will both be under some scrutiny by friends and family. People will judge you, and it will be very difficult to win over the children, for, in their eyes, you will be the "home-wrecker". If this is the case, be prepared for a rough ride.
  • If you came into the picture when the divorce was already in progress, it's an entirely different case. If you take your time and show compassion, hopefully, you'll end up with a really good relationship with his kids, and maybe even his ex-wife, because technically, you didn't poach anyone's husband.
  • You can comfort him by doing something relaxing or fun just to steer away from all the stress of divorce proceedings. Surprise him with a massage treat for two, or give him a massage yourself with scented oils, soothing music, and candles. Simple things like cooking his favorite dish and watching movies while snuggling together can be very comforting for your man.
  • When it comes to serious legal matters; these are his to sort out. You can, however, refer lawyer friends that can help him with the case. Overall, it is important to give him the both the attention and distraction he needs to boost his confidence and keep his sanity, especially during a very chaotic divorce scenario.

The best thing you can do is be positive in everything you say to him, also do not remind him of his current situation. It will take time for him to get over the divorce so be understanding. He will not feel better overnight, so just continue to encourage him through his tough time.

My guy's divorce was recently final after 2 years and this is what has been happening?

My guy has been separated for the last 2 years but the divorce just became final I believe in June. The problem has been they have many assets and properties and the division was difficult. Also, his Ex is difficult. He has 2 college age children who have affected deeply as well. The beginning of July the family home went on the market. I haven't heard from him much since then, and he doesn't talk about it and I understand. He is trying to rebuild his life I am sure but he doesn't respond to my texts or my calls. Only every few weeks. I send a good morning here and there. Thinking of you. No pressure of course just trying to be supportive in all ways I can. He was married for 35 years and I know this is difficult but I am feeling at times like he wants me to go away. It was his birthday a few weeks ago and I made a beautiful gift for him and I left it at his office and the next day he sent a text saying I was too good to him and he had one of his nurses take a picture of him and he sent it. He is a doctor by the way. But I was confused why he sent a picture maybe because I hadn't seen him for awhile and I thought it may have been his way of saying I still like you don't go anywhere. My girlfriends are telling me to give up on him and I haven't heard from him since. He had never sent a picture before and I thought that to be odd. Am I foolish for waiting while he works all this out?

The divorce was most likely when he realized that chapter in his life was finished. It sometimes takes a physical piece of evidence for reality to hit and suddenly he needs time to get over his divorce. He did send you a pic of him and the gift that you sent him and his message also conveyed a bit of guilt that you were too good for him. Divorce can lower our self-esteem.

If you think he is worth it, wait it out but tell him that you are waiting it out. Otherwise, you can simply ask if he wants you to move on and oblige his answer. You may be way more into him than he is ready for after the end of such a long 35-year marriage and he is just giving himself time to be prepared for another relationship.

Would it be appropriate to ask him if he would be willing to try again?

I was dating a man going through a divorce for over a year. We had a wonderful, fulfilling relationship. It was long distance, but we saw each other every other month on the weekends for little vacations. He has two small children. We spoke on a daily basis and skyped for hours throughout the week. I was with him just last weekend for another one of our visits. We even saw a condo together, and I was introduced to even more of his family members as his girlfriend. After I returned safely home, he became very distant. Four days later, he tells me he would rather be alone, and he cannot give me what I deserve in a committed relationship right now. I understand that he needs space, and I want to give that him. But I am deeply in love with this guy, and we have expressed to each other numerous times how intensely we feel about one another and the undeniable chemistry between us. I can seriously picture a future with him, we have talked very seriously about our future together in the past, and then. . . boom! The breakup. He has expressed his doubts to me before, but we talked about them and came to the conclusion that it is better for us to stay together. I know the trip we had probably made him realize how serious our relationship was becoming so fast, and he wasn't ready to put himself into a kind of position that required that level of commitment. He messaged me the morning after the break you to see if I was alright. The day after I sent him a message apologizing for the way I acted when I received the news and expressed to him that I would like to keep in contact. He told me that he was very happy to hear that I would like to keep in contact with him, and he told me that he holds me very dear. We haven't spoken since. I don't think I will mentally be prepared to have a genuine conversation with him again until a couple of months pass. But, in that conversation, would it be too inappropriate to ask if he would ever consider trying again with me in "x" number of years? I know he has a lot on his plate right now . . . but what we have is very real and I am by no means going to put my life on hold waiting for him. . . but his answer will give me a sense of relief to the torment I'm feeling. HELP!. I have tried: I haven't tried anything since the breakup. We are civil but we haven't spoken since in the effort to give him a little more space. We talked about doubts before. I think it was caused by: Timing. His separation, and his eagerness to compensate for being alone. He didn't expect to meet someone so transformative, and he wasn't ready so he had to back out before it was too late.

The Condo viewing is probably what triggered reality of your relationship. He is sending mixed messages because he wants to be with you, yet not living with you for example. What you need to do is convey to him that you would like to include him in your life and are willing to go at his pace.

The good news is that he was honest with his feelings before you relocated to be near him. Suggest that you still meet occasionally and feel free to send him thinking about you text messages.

Should I give up altogether?

Hi.I've known him for about 3 months. We met by accident while he was staying away from home and I was looking for a room to rent. He was not divorced yet. We talked a lot about our problems. I didn't take the place, but we remained friends. He then moved back home and we didn't talk much.Things didn't work out with him and his wife. We started seeing each other just as friends, I listened to his problems and he would help me with stuff around the house.We had a short fling, but we kind of got too close and he was not ready, so we didn't talk much after that. He asked for space and I tried to give him space, but I would still text him to see if he's OK. I really didn't understand his need for space and at some point, I got very frustrated and sent him some angry messages. He got upset, I apologized, but then I kind of thanked him for rejecting me. What should I do now?. I have tried: I listened to him every time he needed to talk to someone, I never judged him nor did I say anything bad about his ex-wife, but I suppose it was clear that I was on his side.. I think it was caused by: Me not understanding his need of space and time. I was scared that we'd go very cold and I kept sending him texts to which he didn't reply. I noticed he was uptight around me (he would still help me with things around the house) and there was a kind of tension.

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Broke up with a man going through a divorce. Is there still hope?

I had been dating a man with 2 young children going through a divorce for 8 months and then we broke up (my suggestion) because he just has too much on his plate...court coming up, kids, work, coaching, taking a class for his master, etc. We have such a connection and were great together, we were best friends. We have a trip planned in July and I asked about it and he still wants to go. He asked if I was still going to talk to him. I feel like I am getting mixed messages, but I am just trying to give him space while he sorts through everything and has time to grieve once the divorce is final. Also, get a solid schedule when he sees his children. I want to wait because I love him very much and he has told me that too, but am I a rebound? Or does he just want to be friends in the future or is it possible to rekindle? I am not reaching out to him, but he will text call every once in a while. I keep it light hearted and positive. HELP!!! I can see a future with him and miss him so much.

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He's divorced and has financial problems, how should I behave?

Hi, I value his privacy very much..... He's divorced and has had health issues too. He also has financial issues having to have paid off his ex ( I know paid off sound awful, sorry ) He's been through an awful lot but I feel strongly for him and I want to be near him, How should I go About it please ?. Thank you,. . Jaqueline. We met 10 years ago when he was separated, he was just flirty with me at that time so I moved on also because I'd moved abroad for several years. We have rediscovered each other now. I have tried: I've just been there for him and I've tried to help him although he's proud ( obviously ). I think he enjoys my company but has a lot on his plate at the moment. I think it was caused by: I don't know, honestly. I've never asked why he and his wife got divorced, should I Ask ?

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