Dating After Divorce – The World of Online Dating Websites
Many of you who have been following my blog know that I was married for almost eleven years, had three little boys, and then went through a divorce. It took me a while to decide that I wanted to date again after my marriage ended. I went through so many different feelings. For a long time, I felt resentful when I saw couples together and especially when people were getting married. My initial thought was, “Why get married? It’s just gonna end.” Or “Good luck with your marriage. Better start saving up for your divorce!” Or just the overall feeling of not being able to understand how relationships actually work.
Dating after divorce is totally different than dating before marriage. It’s having to learn how to trust again, how to feel confident again, and how to separate the good guys from the jerks. Don’t get me wrong, I’m sure there are women out there that can be jerks too when it comes to dating! Dating after divorce can be challenging because the inevitable topic of divorce and why it happened may come up. The person you date will more than likely want to know why you weren’t able to make it work in your marriage but feel that you can make it work in a relationship now.
Why is dating after divorce so hard? “A divorced woman may feel very vulnerable at this stage, in part because she used to have a spouse to ‘protect’ her and now she has to go out into the world on her own,” says Diana Kirschner, PhD, author of Sealing the Deal: The Love Mentor’s Guide to Lasting Love.
Let’s not forget how difficult it can be to “find” someone to date! I’ve found that many of my social circles involve other moms or married couples, which pretty much excluded any potential there was of single men. I didn’t want to meet someone in a bar and dating men through your friends pretty much leads up to a negative experience – especially when things don’t work out. So, I went the way of the new age – Online Dating. That’s right! I had an online profile and I dated through the site. Fortunately, I finally found an amazing man – whom I’ve been with for over a year now!
There are quite a few online dating sites out there, and I found a different experience with each. Here are a few of the sites that I tried and what I thought about them.
– eHarmony.com – The first site I tried was eHarmony.com. While I heard several good things about the site, it was not one of my favorites. It started out with getting rejected because my divorce wasn’t final and then when it was, I had to send in a copy of the Final Judgment so they could change the status and I could use the system. Once I did sign up, I was required to pay a fee. I paid the fee and soon found out that the only way the other person could respond or read my email was if they were a paid member as well. Needless to say, I did NOT renew my contract.
– Match.com – Another dating site that I tried was Match.com. This was also a site I did not find much success with. Again, you have to sign up and pay for the service in order to really get any use out of it. It was similar to eHarmony.com in that the person you send a message to may not respond to you until he or she pays for the service.
– Plenty of Fish – This was the winner. This was the site that I met Frank on and I couldn’t be happier! First of all, I love that it was free and easy to use. Plus, there was a filter in the system that matched you with others who had similar beliefs and goals (i.e. family size, religion, occupations, etc.). Do keep in mind that there are plenty on that site that are looking for one night affairs and you can easily identify them when they try to message you late at night, asking inappropriate questions. If this happens, you can quickly turn the chat session off and block them from further contact in the future.
It’s important to remember that dating and finding a good match can take time. Don’t give up and definitely don’t sell yourself short. While these are my personal experiences with these sites, each person may have different feelings about the sites.
I received no compensation for this post. All opinions expressed in this post are 100% mine.