Is Divorced Dating Different?

Updated March 14, 2024by Regain Editorial Team

Recovering from divorce can be a difficult process for some people. When a marriage doesn’t work out, it may leave you feeling insecure about starting another relationship. You might desire a new relationship, but you could still be afraid of whether things will turn sour as they did with your marriage. You might also wonder if divorced dating is different from dating prior to marriage.

Are there kids in the picture?

You can find love again

One of the biggest differences between divorced dating and dating prior to marriage is that with divorced dating, it’s more likely that kids will be involved. You might have kids of your own, which can alter the dynamic when you’re trying to start dating again. If you have school-aged children, then you’re going to want to find a partner who is comfortable with this. Of course, the people you could potentially date might have children of their own, too.

It may be important to acknowledge that your kids and your potential partner’s kids will play a role in the relationship. Even if you don’t have plans for a serious relationship, it could still be a factor. Sometimes, children may react negatively when mom or dad starts dating again. They might be worried that this new person is taking away their parent, which could cause some behavioral problems. Consider reassuring your children that you will not love them any less just because you found someone new to spend time with.

Divorced dating doesn’t have to be overly complicated, even when you have children. However, it may be important to be aware of the potential challenges that can occur. It could also be crucial to find a partner that respects the fact that you have parental responsibilities. If they’re capable of getting along with your children, then that could be a plus.

You might have trust issues

Many people who have gone through a divorce may develop trust issues. These issues may be pronounced if your ex-spouse betrayed you somehow leading up to the divorce. You might find that you have some lingering trust issues as a result. 

It could be helpful to keep in mind that your current relationship has nothing to do with your former one. Just because one partner cheated on you in the past doesn’t mean that someone new will do the same thing. Consider giving any new romantic partners the benefit of the doubt. Bringing your past wounds into your current relationship might feel inevitable, but you may be able to work through these issues. Some people go to therapy to process these feelings, which may help them remain open to others despite difficulties with trust.

Keep in mind that the person you’re dating might be dealing with similar problems. They might also have trust issues that stem from a bad relationship. You may need to try to understand each other’s pasts so that you can build a future together. Communicating your concerns can be crucial, and you may want to acknowledge that trust takes time. 

Older and wiser

You may feel like you’re a bit older and wiser now. Going through a major life event such as a divorce can be traumatizing for many, but it can also make you smarter. Even if you have some issues stemming from your failed marriage, you may also have an increased understanding of certain pitfalls. Your next relationship might be more successful than your marriage since you have grown as a person.

The people you decide to date might be similarly wise. When you’re dating someone who understands what they want, it can make the relationship more fulfilling. You can use your wisdom to help nurture a healthy relationship. 

For example, the old you might have made certain mistakes or expected too much out of your partner. You might have regrets about how you treated your ex-spouse, and you may want to do things differently this time around. 

Your expectations might be different

Your expectations might also be significantly different than they were when you got married. In the past, you might have settled down with thoughts of starting a family. If you’ve already had children, then this might mean that you’re looking for different things now. Instead of looking for someone to settle down with, you might just be looking for someone to enjoy life with.

Taking time to heal

Taking time to heal after a divorce may be essential to moving forward with a healthy mindset. Some people may need months to get over a divorce, and others might need several years. How long you need to heal and process what has happened could depend on your specific situation. 

Some people may experience depression or anxiety after getting divorced. Or these mental health challenges might manifest when you start dating again. Working with a therapist can help you manage any symptoms of depression or anxiety that disrupt your daily life.

Sex after divorce

Sex after divorce can be somewhat tricky at first. Some recently divorced people may find a new intimate partner easily. This isn’t always the case, though. You could be used to only having sex with your now ex-spouse, so sleeping with someone else may feel strange. You could still feel like you need to be loyal to your ex even though your marriage has ended. Eventually, this feeling may fade. 

Online counseling can help

You can find love again

If you’re just now entering into a new relationship, then you might need some support as you build a new foundation together. Individual or couples counseling can help you avoid familiar pitfalls. You can also learn how to communicate more effectively while working on overcoming past emotional trauma. 

When you’re getting back into the dating game after a divorce, you may be feeling particularly vulnerable, though. And that can make it hard to discuss your feelings with a stranger, especially in person. Online counseling may be a better fit as you make the transition back to dating. Some people report feeling more at ease in a web-based therapeutic setting. This form of remote counseling might also help free up your schedule for more social activities since it doesn’t require a commute and you can skip the waiting room. 

Perhaps more importantly, online counseling has been proven effective for various populations, including individuals, couples, and families. A comprehensive meta-analysis of the existing research found no significant difference between online and in-person counseling in terms of outcomes. The review probed nearly 10,000 cases spanning a variety of mental health challenges. 


Getting through a divorce might be tough, but your new relationship can thrive with the help of the licensed online counselors from Regain. In therapy, you can learn from the past and move forward with more confidence in the future. Sign up today

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