Can I date during my divorce?
Navigating how (and if) you should date before the papers are signed.
Becoming newly single inevitably brings up the big question: When can I start dating? Do I need to wait until the ink has dried, as soon as the bags are packed, when the kids are old enough? Because there’s no one-size-fits-all answer, it’s best to work with a Columbus divorce attorney to create a sound plan for your love life.
Can I date with children?
Insulating your kids from the drama of divorce is difficult enough without the added stress of a new partner.
If you have children, dating is not a monkey wrench you’ll want to throw into your divorce. And frankly, that isn’t only because it could cause problems in the case, which it will. It’s because most people aren’t ready. Singles going through a divorce need some time and space between ending their marriage and getting into another relationship. When you jump into a new relationship, you could risk planting the seed for a second divorce in the future.
If you do decide to date, establish a timeframe with your ex for introducing the kids. That might mean after six months of dating, or only when the divorce is final. To avoid conflict down the road, you should decide together quickly when the new partner will be introduced, and with what title.
Establishing a game plan ahead of time isn’t only to keep the relationship with your ex cooperative. Children experiencing separation and divorce need stability during the unsure times of the early stages. And don’t forget that no matter how invested you may be in your new relationship, protecting your children from the effects of divorce is always your first priority.
What if I’m already in a relationship?
That said, a lot of individuals asking if they can date are really asking: What do I do about my current girlfriend or boyfriend? Sometimes it’s best to put the relationship on hold during the dissolution process, as it’s going to make this case harder when your spouse finds out. And they will find out.
However, each case is different. If you’re already in a relationship, creating a mature and situation-appropriate plan with your Columbus divorce attorney can be a viable option. At the end of the day, honesty is the best policy. We can work with you to figure out the best way to deliver the news to your ex.
Should I tell my spouse?
If you choose not to tell your spouse, odds are you’re going to get caught. And when you do get caught, your spouse will feel like there’s zero trust – ultimately making the case harder to resolve. Not to mention, you could embarrass him or her if they hear it from someone else (possibly even your kids) instead of in a private conversation with you and your divorce lawyer. Having an open conversation with your ex shows one another respect, keeps the kids out of the middle and lays the groundwork for an amicable divorce. Beginning this line of discussion in a neutral territory with your lawyer can not only help mediate, but also protect women in cases of mental or physical abuse.
Get the facts from your Columbus divorce attorney
Don’t approach the dating conversation alone. If you’re considering bringing someone new into the picture, talk to the lawyers at Weis + O'Connor first. We’ll help you talk to your ex, create a timeline to keep your kids safe and address any other bumps in the road. Get in touch with us today by calling 614-228-4200 or completing our online form to set up a consultation.