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Dating during a divorce

Just because someone is going through a divorce doesn't mean that they will never fall in love again. In fact, the Huffington Post reports that a survey of newly divorced people found that almost 50 percent of men and 20 percent of women were eager to get remarried. Many people, however, may be unsure when it might be appropriate to start seeing someone new if their divorce has not yet been finalized. While there are different schools of thought on this topic, most experts would agree that parties should tread carefully when starting a new relationship before the divorce is final.

One of the biggest considerations will be if the couple has children and whether potential custody and parenting issues are looming. If so and the spouse's new boyfriend or girlfriend has a questionable background, it could cause added friction between the divorcing spouses and turn an amicable custody battle into a nasty one. Additionally, it may be wise to refrain from exposing children to a new relationship before the psychologlical effects of the divorce have been appropriately dealt with. If a party does choose to start dating, however, Parents Magazine recommends leaving the children out of the relationship entirely.

If the couple has no children, there are still other factors to consider. If the divorce is going smoothly and the parties are behaving amicably, a new relationship may be no big deal. But going through a divorce can be a highly emotional time and if one spouse is harboring anger or jealousy, a new relationship could add fuel to the divorce fire, especially if it comes as a surprise.

Conventional wisdom says that people should wait until their divorce is finalized before hitting the dating scene. But if someone new comes along, regardless of the parties involved and whether or not they have children, maximum discretion should always be used.

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