One of the most common temptations people fall for when a relationship is ending is the desire to find a new love - Often these people have been unhappy and missing love, companionship and sex for a longtime, and so there's a real pent-up, unmet need for love.
Since I counsel men and women before, during and after a relationship or marriage, including through a divorce, I frequently see people dating when separated.
Decide wisely because a lot of heartache is at stake.
This is a question I am frequently asked; and although the technically correct answer is “yes,” my advice is usually “NO!
” Such advice, however, bears further clarification of context, as follows.
Absolutely nothing is stated in the law to prevent someone who is separated from dating whomever they please. A more educated answer (and the careful answer) to this dating question depends on the facts, as outlined in the various fact patterns below. If you have children and are planning to expose the children to someone you intend to date, you should be sure this person has the character and moral qualities of someone you are willing to have around your children.
Relationships have gotten really complicated these days.
With people marrying less and divorcing more, it's no wonder that the opportunity, and challenge, of dating while separated has become pretty commonplace.
I most often run into people dating while separated when they're separated themselves and involved with someone else who's separated too.
A more accurate term for 'separated' in most of these cases would really be 'separating,' since few of these people are actually through their divorces or have completely ended their previous relationships.
If this person’s character and moral qualities are in question, the other parent of your children could use your involvement with this person as a reason to try to change the custody arrangement. If you have been accused of having an illicit sexual relationship with this person you plan to date before you are separated, then obviously your involvement with this person after you are separated can be used as evidence of a relationship with him or her before the separation. If you are in a hotly contested negotiation or litigation with your separated spouse over custody, child support, alimony, or property division, and you have not been separated very long (say, less than 6 months), then it is usually a mistake to begin a dating relationship with another person.