Now that you and your spouse have made the decision to move forward with a divorce, you might feel like it is the right time to begin this new chapter and dive back into the dating pool. After all, divorce is not only an emotional experience, but a lonely one as well. However, dating before your divorce is finalized is generally an unwise decision as it can have many ramifications on the outcome of settlement and on your personal life as well.
Here are some things to consider if you are wondering whether or not you should date during your divorce:
- Strategic Reasons: Divorce is not just about signing papers and dividing assets. It is a highly emotional experience and, when your spouse sees that you are dating someone else, it might feel a lot like someone poking at a very fresh wound. He or she might feel hurt, angry, or resentful and seek revenge to compensate for these feelings by stalling negotiations or fighting you on issues that would have otherwise been resolved with ease. Even if the decision to divorce was mutual, it can stir up some negative feelings that can derail your divorce case.
If you have children, it would be particularly beneficial to refrain from dating until the dust settles. Adding a new partner to the mix can complicate the situation. Given that you will both continue to co-parent even after the divorce, it is best to not add tension and impact how much he or she is willing to cooperate with you.
- Legal Reasons: Technically, you are still married until the divorce is officially finalized. In states that recognize fault, dating while going through the process of a divorce might be viewed as adultery and possibly impact how your settlement goes. Play it safe and wait until after the divorce is finalized before you begin dating.
- Your Partner Will Be Scrutinized: If you have children and your new partner has a criminal history, this can impact the outcome of your child custody case. Basically, anyone who might potentially have regular contact with your children is subject to investigation, so if your new love interest has a shady past, it might end up costing you custody of your children or even limited visitation rights.
- Living With Your New Partner: Having a new special someone in your life can also impact how much spousal support you receive if you end up living together. Why? Well, the courts will assume you are better off since you will be able to share living expenses with your new partner. You would not want to risk receiving a reduced settlement for a relationship that has no guarantee of lasting.
- Emotional Reasons: It might feel wonderful to experience the excitement of a new relationship, especially if your new partner lavishes you with the love and attention that might have been lacking in your marriage. However, it is important to question how ready you are for this. People going through a divorce are often incredibly vulnerable and in a state of uncertainty, which is not great foundations for a new relationship that you hope will last. Before you start a new relationship, you will want to feel emotionally and financially ready, so you can truly start fresh.
- What If This Person Is the One: It is hard to make permanent choices when your life is changing all around you in dramatic ways. Several studies have shown that the first relationship one enters in the immediate aftermath of a divorce rarely survives. That said, you might still believe this new person is the one for you and it might be true. If this new person is right for you, he or she will be willing to wait.
Of course, many still decide to date regardless of these aforementioned points. If you still want to date, first consult with your lawyer for further advice. He or she might have some sound advice and suggestions for how to keep a new relationship under wraps until the divorce is finalized.
Katy, Texas Divorce Attorneys
If you are considering a divorce or have already been served with divorce papers, now is the time to seek skilled and experienced representation. At Adams Law Firm, we are proud to have represented countless clients throughout the past 35 years, obtaining favorable results and protecting their interests. Our team of Katy family law attorneys is here to provide the exceptional representation you deserve.
Contact us today at (281) 391-9237 to get started on your case.