Should I Date During Divorce?
Now that your marriage is over and you are in the process of obtaining a divorce, you might think it’s an appropriate time to date; however, this could potentially be a mistake. Holding off on re-entering the dating scene is a wise decision, for legal, strategic, and emotional reasons.
Read on to learn more about why you should wait for your divorce to be finalized before resuming your quest for romantic partnership.
- Strategic Reasons: When your spouse sees you dating someone new and moving on with your life, it can feel like someone is rubbing salt into a fresh wound. Emotions are incredibly raw during this time, which can make it difficult to see the person you once loved now dating someone else. Consequently, your spouse might retaliate, and may even try to stall the divorce process or fight you on issues that would have otherwise gone smoothly.
If you have children, dating during a divorce might make things particularly hairy. The goal is to keep this process as amicable as possible so you can have a relatively cooperative and healthy co-parenting relationship in the future. If your ex-spouse is busy seething with jealousy and resentment, however, it will be near impossible to co-parent effectively. Obviously this does not mean you can never date, but doing so while you are still in the process of divorcing might poison the spirit of your relationship for a long time to come.
- Legal Reasons: Technically, you and your spouse are still married even though you are in the midst of a divorce. While California is not one of them, in the few states that do happen to recognize fault in divorce cases, dating before the ink is dry might be seen as adultery, which can impact the outcome of spousal support.
Even in states where fault is not recognized, such as California, having a new partner can impact spousal support. For example, if you live with him or her and are splitting living expenses, this might warrant reduced spousal support payments. Additionally, your chances at winning child custody might also be impacted if your partner has a less-than-sterling history. Your new partner’s background will very likely be scrutinized, particularly if he or she is a major part of your life, and especially if children are involved – after all, they’ll want to ensure that the relationship is in the best interests of your children. If your boyfriend or girlfriend has a criminal past, this will likely harm your case.
- Emotional Reasons: Going through a divorce does not only present legal challenges, but emotional ones as well; and receiving attention from someone new can feel invigorating. While this might feel amazing and help you avoid the emotional turmoil of your divorce, you cannot ignore your feelings forever. Eventually, you will have to confront them and learn to appropriately cope with having experienced the end of your marriage. If you really want your new relationship to last, give it the foundation it deserves. Be cautious of starting something new while you are still in the process of tying up loose ends, or while you are still under extreme stress. A new relationship built on stability will have a better chance at lasting and contributing to your happiness.
If there is someone whom you truly believe is the right person for your life, he or she will be willing to wait and the relationship will likely be stronger now that you are no longer in the midst of an ongoing battle.
In some cases, it is possible that your new relationship might not affect your divorce if you have already had a long separation from your spouse, do not live in a fault state, or are going through an uncontested divorce. Your lawyer will be able to advise you on what the wisest course of action is for your situation.
For Legal Guidance During Your Divorce, Contact Our Rancho Cucamonga Divorce Attorneys at Chung & Ignacio, LLP
Moving forward with a divorce is not an easy decision. At Chung & Ignacio, LLP, we understand the difficulties of making decisions regarding your family, children, property, assets and everything else in between. Our legal team is devoted to helping you reach an outcome in the most amicable and cost-effective manner possible.
Get started on your case today by calling (909) 726-7112, or contact us online to schedule a consultation.