Suffering the pain of divorce is never easy. No matter how long the marriage lasted, finding love after divorce can be tremendously challenging. Breakups of all kinds are emotional upheavals, but finding love after a divorce can seem hardest sometimes. From being married and not any more available or ready to mingle, you are back to square one, so to say.
You are trying to get a foothold in the dating game again, while your heart and mind might now have fresh barriers against love. Happily ever after seems too far fetched and unrealistic for sure when a marriage you thought was going to last forever has crumbled. How will your heart and soul, having witnessed it fail, still believe in love?
Though it is absolutely normal to be cautious about love the next time around, slipping into hopelessness can only add to the misery.
Related reading: With pleasure comes responsibility – pointers for sex after divorce
Let’s face these 10 real fears about love after divorce
1. Being single again
You were a couple not just socially, but in your head, too. You’d started thinking and looking at everything from a couple’s perspective and now you are supposed to put yourself out there again as single. The fear of rejection is back. The hemming and hawing over all the singlehood dilemmas are back.
2. Loving yourself
The first casualty after a major breakup is hating yourself. Your self-love will go down immensely, so the challenge is whether you will be able to love yourself again. You suddenly, for a while, won’t have anyone to assure you that you are loved in a romantic way. Self-love is often the first challenge!
Related reading: How or why I should love myself naked
3. Being vulnerable
Brene Brown says in an amazing Ted Talk called “The Power of Vulnerability”, which has millions of views, that being vulnerable gives us the power. The fear of being hurt again is one of the biggest hurdles that one needs to overcome after a divorce and heartbreak.
Putting your pieces back together and then opening access to them for the dating and love world again can be daunting, but not impossible for sure.
4. Having hope and faith
When a relationship that was supposed to last a lifetime fails halfway, it often takes away all your faith in happy endings and hope that there is love and companionship aplenty in this world. You grow more suspicious of people’s motives when they try to get closer to you and often lose any hope of finding love or a durable relationship again.
5. Love at second sight
Post-divorce, of course there are scars. Dating sites or the pressure to be with someone again can often pull down a divorced person. Re-entry into the dating world can begin as a daunting and unrewarding experience and you will be wary or sceptical of finding a compatible partner with matching interests.
6. Self-confidence; am I good enough?
As we know from childhood, once a toy breaks we might join it again but the crack shows, or often it might not be as sturdy as it was. In adulthood, that toy is you: you will heal but the hurt may still come up at times and often lead you to questioning your self-confidence.
7. To trust or not to trust
Love is nothing without trust and respect, as they say. You might find the chemistry, the shared interests, the compatibility and everything else, but what about trust?
You might find the chemistry, the shared interests, the compatibility and everything else, but what about trust?
After facing a betrayal, the one emotion that will completely deplete and you will need to rebuild from the start will be trust in a happy future, in goodness and self-worth.
8. Second time lucky or unlucky
Your logical mind will tell you that everyone has had their heart broken at few times. Second time lucky is often considered a rarity still. And though the odds would be in your favour, you will doubt your own healing process to try this whole love thing all over again.
9. Body to body talk
We are not just all soul or all heart; we all know romantic needs are also of the body. Sex, or even the thought of sex immediately after divorce might seem extremely weird and uncomfortable, because being naked and full of desire is being vulnerable once again too.
10. Stars in the day and all that jazz
The ancient Greeks described love as not just one emotion but multiple types: eros/erotic, philia/friendship, pragma/domestic, ludus/playful, agape/universal and philautia/self-esteem. After divorce, you will not regain all of them. Or will you? That is the real intrigue.
But as the famous quote from The Wizard of Oz goes, “Hearts will never be practical until they are made unbreakable.” Remember, as long as there is life, there is possibility and there is love!