Are You Ready To Get Back In The Dating Game?

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Valentine’s Day is coming up and it may be causing you to think about your dating life. If you’ve been out of the dating game for awhile, this can cause some anxiety. But with some self-reflection and guidance from professionals like our SPAOA Ambassador Steve Ward, the journey to your new love can be less worrisome and more fun. The first step you need to take before you get back in the dating field, however, is figuring out if you are truly ready. If you’re not sure how to do that, ask yourself these questions:
  1. Are you doing this because you want to or because to or because others are pushing you to? While friends and family want the best for you, they may not know whether or not you are actually ready for it. Dating should be something you do for you, and not anyone else.
  2. Do you know your intentions? If you start dating without being clear on what kind of relationship (if any at all) you are looking for, you could end up wasting your time with the wrong people. The answer to this question can change, so wait until you have a good reason.
  3. Do you know what you want? Having at least an idea of what you are looking for in a mate will save you time and effort. Not knowing the answer to this question is a fairly clear sign that it may not be time to start dating just yet.
  4. Are you over your ex/divorce/child’s other parent? If you’re not, this is a major red flag. This is something that you should work through before beginning to date again, to give you a chance at the best relationship possible.
  5. Do you know what you have to offer? Or at least that you have something to offer? Because you do. If you’re not convinced of this yet, take some time to let it sink in before getting back into the dating field.
  6. Do you have someone to watch your child or can you afford a babysitter? This may seem obvious, but it’s important to know beforehand that you will have someone to care for your child while you are out. It will also reduce some stress.
  7. Do you have the time, energy, and attention to date and possibly start a relationship? As great as getting to know someone can be, it also takes quite a bit of effort. Do you know that you can give that kind of effort?
  8. Will you still have time for self-care? Self-care has been a major buzzword these days, and for good reason.  In order to take care of others, such as your child, you need to practice self-care. If dating will means you won’t have time to do this, reconsider.
  9. Are you ready to be (emotionally) intimate? This is something you will have to think long and hard about. If you are dating with the intention to get into a serious relationship, being ready and willing to be intimate is highly important.
  10. Is your child ready? They don’t have to necessarily like it, but can they deal with it? As their parent, you’ll most likely be able to sense whether they’re ready.
It’s in your own best interest to make sure that you are ready to date before getting back into the field. It can make the difference in how much you enjoy your dating experience….and even affect your success. So are you ready?


By Alecia Stanton of Single Parents Alliance of America
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