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Old 02-17-2018, 07:10 AM
 
28 posts, read 11,193 times
Reputation: 60

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A little context:
So....I am about to be single (divorce should be finalized within a few months) for the first time since my early 20s. I'm 35 now and have two young kids - about to be age 7 and 4. They are my world and my #1 priority. Without going into detail, I will say that it was my soon to be ex's actions that led to our divorce. With that said, I have put my ego aside and have been moving forward as amicably as possible. We are essentially splitting everything 50/50. Although I'm worried sick about the impact of divorce on my children (not being able to read & tuck them in each night kind of burns my soul), I feel I have definitely gotten over any romantic feelings I had for my soon to be ex. We will remain friends and communicate often - primarily over kid/family related issues.

So on to my questions:

1) Why does it seem as if all the advice I get is to wait so long (years, some suggest) before I begin dating again? My ex has clearly moved on from me and has gone out with plenty of other people, why can't I - if I'm not being selfish and taking time away from kids? I don't feel a need to find a soul mate right away nor do I want to just jump in a serious relationship. I do crave affection & attention from another woman. What is waiting 6 months or another year going to change???

2) What are my prospects as a 35 year old with 2 kids? Of course looks are subjective, but I've always gotten compliments and I'm in great physical shape as I work out/play sports a lot. I have a job I love and am passionate about. I'm not rich, but have enough. However, I think I'm at a potentially difficult age to find a lot of dates. Pretty much all of my friends my age are married with kids.

3) Are dating apps worthy of my time? Note, I'm not ready to use these yet, but have thought about using them in the future. I live in a smallish city (about 50,000 in the general area) but somewhat close proximity to bigger towns/cities. During the school year, it's difficult to get out and about so dating apps could be convenient.


This is all new to me and has me anxious - both good and bad. I'll probably have many more q's. Thanks in advance for any helpful advice/responses.
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Old 02-17-2018, 07:40 AM
 
1,881 posts, read 801,112 times
Reputation: 2075
For #3 I would avoid dating apps. You will only have decent options in a huge city and will just get frustrated.
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Old 02-17-2018, 07:42 AM
 
Location: Bloomington IN
6,534 posts, read 7,793,687 times
Reputation: 15950
It's really not a matter of whether your soon to be ex is dating. It's a matter of whether you are mentally and emotionally ready to be dating and learned from what went wrong in your marriage.

I suspect you have not when you say it was "her actions" that led to the divorce. A marriage involves two people and so does a divorce--just food for thought. I know there are exceptions--i.e a spouse is a violent criminal, drug dealer, etc. That's not the case here. Even if your soon to be ex cheated, there is something you can, and should, learn from that about relationships.

That said, it sounds as if you really are prepared to do the best for your kids. Focus on that "new" normal with them. Focus on feeling comfortable and happy in your new life. Waiting 6 months or a year will allow you to feel comfortable in your new life. It will also be reassuring to your very young children. It sounds as if that is not the first priority of your ex. Make it yours. The kids need some help in understanding that YOU are a permanent fixture in their lives.

Best wishes.
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Old 02-17-2018, 08:07 AM
 
Location: a primitive state
9,866 posts, read 20,151,295 times
Reputation: 12389
I dated three single dads and their children were generally fine, though I interacted with each set to varying degrees. Older kids can be wary and protective. Younger ones tend to be more accepting and eager, but that’s not good because everyone gets attached too early.

Problems come more often from a man’s parental duties and having to schedule his romantic life around the children’s schedules. Ex-wives can also be difficult for any number of reasons.

My advice is to not date at all for the first year or so, to allow time for a new normal routine to fall into place. Just don’t put yourself into a position where you might meet someone.

After that, take it slow and try to date people based on real life, not dating apps. Gradually become more social.

Keep things casual until a relationship has been thoroughly vetted. Then move forward.
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Old 02-17-2018, 08:11 AM
 
28 posts, read 11,193 times
Reputation: 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by rrah View Post
It's really not a matter of whether your soon to be ex is dating. It's a matter of whether you are mentally and emotionally ready to be dating and learned from what went wrong in your marriage.

I suspect you have not when you say it was "her actions" that led to the divorce. A marriage involves two people and so does a divorce--just food for thought. I know there are exceptions--i.e a spouse is a violent criminal, drug dealer, etc. That's not the case here. Even if your soon to be ex cheated, there is something you can, and should, learn from that about relationships.

That said, it sounds as if you really are prepared to do the best for your kids. Focus on that "new" normal with them. Focus on feeling comfortable and happy in your new life. Waiting 6 months or a year will allow you to feel comfortable in your new life. It will also be reassuring to your very young children. It sounds as if that is not the first priority of your ex. Make it yours. The kids need some help in understanding that YOU are a permanent fixture in their lives.

Best wishes.

Thank you for your advice and kind wishes.

In regards to the "her actions" comment. I could write a book on this, but will try to keep this simple. She was a closeted lesbian (I know there are now probably a million questions running through most people's minds if/when they hear about this). We did have a very normal sexual relationship and she did hug/kiss me often (though I was always the initiator). I knew something was missing, but genuinely thought it had far more to do with depression/post-partum depression than her sexuality. She had been repressing a side of herself and projecting that anger and resentment on me for years with increasing intensity over the past year or so. For years, I tried relentlessly to connect and communicate with her in the ways she was hoping I would. But I just couldn't because I am a man.

Her being a lesbian does make it easier for me to move on and let go of romantic feelings for her. Right or wrong, I think it makes it easier for me to remain friends with her and forgive her for stepping outside the marriage (putting herself on dating apps, dating other women, etc.). I wish she would have went about it differently and showed a bit more concern for my well-being, but it is what it is. I'm bitter that I will see my kids less than 100% due to the split, but I'm not a bitter person. I'm an eternal optimist. I've been blessed with good health, great family and friends, a job I love, and 2 kids I who bring me immense joy.

I guess in a way, I'm just very anxious to be with someone who desires me because I've missed that feeling for so long. Even though we had a relatively normal sex life for married parents (about 4-6 times a month in recent years), that desire wasn't reciprocated. I guess I overlooked that aspect of the marriage because so many other things were good in the relationship and because I had such a strong desire to build and maintain a happy family.
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Old 02-17-2018, 08:21 AM
 
Location: Florida
19,775 posts, read 19,880,941 times
Reputation: 23194
You're going to probably get plenty of advice.
Keep in mind that none of these people are you nor will their advice necessarily pertain to you or your life or attitudes.
I gather from what you've said that your ex is a good mom?
One question. Will the kinds be living with you, your wife or split between you?
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Old 02-17-2018, 08:35 AM
 
235 posts, read 97,428 times
Reputation: 360
Wow. She did a Caitlyn Jenner on you huh. There are many cases like that. It actually really amaze me. Truth be told. I thought I was a lesbian myself. Everyone around me knows for some weird reason, family, neighbors, classmates. Even though I don't say anything! WTF is up with that. Also most of my crushes are girls. Up to now actually.

I think it was also the reason why I was a virgin and single for so long. But when I finally decided to do online dating, I was searching for men and yes I really want to be married. I am married now to a guy! LOL.

But sometimes we tease each other like I call him gay he calls me a lesbian, LOL.

And yes I am so vocal to him if we are watching a movie and I will tell him, wow that chick is hot. And that's when he says I'm such a lesbian.
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Old 02-17-2018, 08:46 AM
 
Location: The Triad (NC)
28,484 posts, read 62,101,894 times
Reputation: 32141
Quote:
Originally Posted by NicholasAB View Post
So on to my questions:
1) all the advice I get is to wait so long (years, some suggest) before I begin dating again?
To just date? No need to wait. To expect being ready for serious? Wait.

Quote:
2) What are my prospects as a 35 year old with 2 kids?
Mostly it comes down to money. Few divorced Dad's have much.
If you're the exception... you'll be flooded with opportunities.

Quote:
3) Are dating apps worthy of my time?
Does your life otherwise introduce you to a fair number of possible/likely women?
Few 35yo divorced Dad's will. If you're the exception... you'll be flooded with opportunities.
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Old 02-17-2018, 08:53 AM
 
Location: San Antonio
3,364 posts, read 9,882,561 times
Reputation: 5369
Quote:
Originally Posted by NicholasAB View Post
A little context:


1) Why does it seem as if all the advice I get is to wait so long (years, some suggest) before I begin dating again? My ex has clearly moved on from me and has gone out with plenty of other people, why can't I - if I'm not being selfish and taking time away from kids? I don't feel a need to find a soul mate right away nor do I want to just jump in a serious relationship. I do crave affection & attention from another woman. What is waiting 6 months or another year going to change???

2) What are my prospects as a 35 year old with 2 kids? Of course looks are subjective, but I've always gotten compliments and I'm in great physical shape as I work out/play sports a lot. I have a job I love and am passionate about. I'm not rich, but have enough. However, I think I'm at a potentially difficult age to find a lot of dates. Pretty much all of my friends my age are married with kids.

3) Are dating apps worthy of my time? Note, I'm not ready to use these yet, but have thought about using them in the future. I live in a smallish city (about 50,000 in the general area) but somewhat close proximity to bigger towns/cities. During the school year, it's difficult to get out and about so dating apps could be convenient.


This is all new to me and has me anxious - both good and bad. I'll probably have many more q's. Thanks in advance for any helpful advice/responses.
1. I'm divorced and I never was told to wait. I started dating before my divorce was completely final, and am I now married, very happily, to the man I started dating early. The only reason to wait is if you have emotional baggage to work through. If you don't, don't.

2. Prospects are fine. It's a new world. The world is full of divorced people with kids. It's all normal now.

3. Dating apps like Tinder won't find you love usually, but they will get you laid. Try paid services for more serious prospects, like Match or E-Harmony. People don't pay memberships when they just want to get laid. Be prepared to dig through a lot of people that you would never date to find the few diamonds.
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Old 02-17-2018, 09:01 AM
 
28 posts, read 11,193 times
Reputation: 60
Quote:
Originally Posted by old_cold View Post
You're going to probably get plenty of advice.
Keep in mind that none of these people are you nor will their advice necessarily pertain to you or your life or attitudes.
I gather from what you've said that your ex is a good mom?
One question. Will the kinds be living with you, your wife or split between you?
We have differing parenting styles, but yes, I do believe she's a good mother. She lacks patience and can be a bit quick to fly of the handle with yelling/confrontation, but overall she's very good to them. She's very type A, organized, driven and get things accomplished. She volunteers her time and efforts and is very involved in their lives.

Though we've grown apart a good bit over the past year (she's become a bit more militant with her feminist views), we still share a lot of values and we both love our kids immensely. I would never doubt the love she has for our kids (and their love for her too).

The kids will be with us 50/50. We are going to try a 2-2-3 split (alternating weeks) and go from there. I will be staying in our current house and she will be staying in her own home just a few blocks away (about 1/4 of an acre down the road). So I guess it's about the best situation you could ask for - all things considered.
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