Dating After Divorce: What Old Habits Are You Hanging on to?

Dating after divorce and over 40 can be trying to say the least. Now you have baggage that you didn’t have in your youth and have to get back out there encumbered by it. The singles scene is different than in your younger days and you might not know where to start or how things work today.

Sometimes the baggage you bring forward into your new dating life is a bunch of old habits. Things that happened over and over again in the past. Things that might not be true today, yet you still expect them to happen.

Here’s a crazy example from my life. My automatic garage door opener has been replaced thankfully. I just had a new one installed. The old one was very quirky and some days it would stop as it should automatically. Other days it would open too far and start freaking out, banging into the motor. Not good.

To insure this banging didn’t happen, I would stand near the button that opened the garage door and wait, in case I had to stop it. I did this routine for 10 years – crazy I know but something I just put up with. I had a solution that worked and used it.

After two weeks of enjoying the new door opener that works correctly, I still find myself waiting at the door to make sure it stops on its own. I do this even though I no longer have to. This silliness is left over and a deeply ingrained response that is obviously going to take time to change. Ridiculous, yes, but true nonetheless.

How does this apply to your dating life? My bet is, if you are dating after divorce or over 40, you too have ingrained responses to situations that have changed. And you have not yet adapted. Give it some thought right now. What are you still expecting to happen that has no real possibility of coming to true?

Here are  a few ideas to get you started thinking:

-Since your ex left, do you still  harbor hopes that he’ll return some day?
-Do you feel most men don’t follow through because so many haven’t over the years?
-Do you hope a knight in shining armor will save you so you don’t have to stick your neck out?
-Do you think all men are cheats and liars because one man behaved this way?
-Do you think all men are commitment phobic because the guy you dated in your 20’s wouldn’t marry you?

Holding on to these ways of thinking, these beliefs about men and dating hinders your success. When you choose to work with me as your dating coach, we will look for these road blocks. Continuing to wait for men to behave in any of these ways precludes you from meeting men who could fulfill your needs. Can you see the truth in this?

What’s the solution? Establish new expectations! Create new beliefs about men, love and dating. Look for positive examples among couples you know to prove other behaviors do exist. It’s time to let go of out dated expectations, habits, and thought patterns that no longer serve you.

Dating after divorce or dating over 40, it’s easy to hang on to expectations. But my hope as your dating coach is that you won’t allow this to continue.  Break free from your traditional expectations and habits and give yourself and men a fresh shot at love. You deserve it

Single for too long, Ronnie wanted to find love. So, she made a few tweaks and then dated 30 men in 15 months to meet her adorable husband Paul. Discovering the keys to midlife dating, she founded It’s Never Too Late for Love to help other smart, successful women find love too! Her mission is to share her proven dating advice  and keen insights about men with women everywhere who are serious about finding love with the right man. Ronnie Ann Ryan, MBA, CCC is a Certified Coach who has helped 1,000’s of midlife women with her Love & Dating Coach services. She’s been featured on BBC’s 5 Live Radio, NBC, ABC, and Fox News, NPR, eHarmony,,, Connecticut Magazine among others around the world. An established author, you can find her 6 books on Amazon.

Leave a Comment