Remarrying: Maybe or I Do?

February 10, 2011

in Singledom

The Wedding Rings ©Sharron Goodyear

Dating post-divorce involves a different set of questions than when you are single and have not been married. Even if compatibility and chemistry exists, there are a few questions that can be deal-breakers for one or both partners in a new relationship. This might not be true for all budding romances post-divorce, but for many there are a few answers to questions that must align for the couple if the relationship is to continue. There are a variety of essential questions, but some seem more common than others.

Three Common Questions Asked When Divorced and Dating

  • How many children do you have?
  • Do you want to have more children?
  • Do you think you will ever marry again?

The first two are easy for me to answer (two, no). The third question requires a more detailed response because simply stating “maybe” always leads to follow-up questions. Maybe is not my answer because I have not thought about this and I am still unsure. I am also not jaded and cynical as a result of the divorce. There is one simple answer:

I am happy and fulfilled in my own life.

I could be negative and add:

So why would I want to screw it up by getting married?

But I won’t.

Because I honestly don’t feel that way about marriage.

But I do have reservations.

Single Mom Seeking wrote a great piece last week about overcoming the fear of getting married. I read, closely monitoring my reaction, looking for any signs that my “maybe” response is truly a sign of commitment issues. I realized from reading her article that I am just being careful. And I have very good reasons to be cautious with such a big decision.

I have two wonderful kids. We have a great relationship, work well as a family, we genuinely like each other, and enjoy our family time.

We have lived in our community since 1992. The three of us are well-established with friends, the school, and the community as a whole. I am Aunt Kelly to some of the kids and I have watched this wonderful group of children grow up together.

I have a flexible job with a good compensation package.  Photography school and writing projects provide a wonderful creative outlet for me.

And, even when I am stuck on home improvement and repair projects, I always have friends willing to help. This might not seem significant, but my home repairs skills are lacking.

As a result, I don’t need a man for anything so I am not looking for someone to marry as my savior–financial or otherwise. I want a man because I love everything that comes with being in a happy, healthy, intimate relationship. To take the step to blend families means making huge changes to the life I have now.

It would take a special man and a solid relationship to want to remarry.

My response is maybe because I won’t settle in what I want in a man and a relationship, which might mean I never marry again; it doesn’t come from not being sure I can make the commitment. What is promising is that I do know what I am looking for and when I find the right guy for me, I will work on building a solid relationship with him.

If you are divorced, have you contemplated remarrying?

What would it take for you to say “I do?”

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{ 19 comments… read them below or add one }

Justin February 10, 2011 at 3:29 pm

I agree with everything you have said.

I feel the same way.
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Random Girl February 10, 2011 at 3:48 pm

Ok, so can you seriously get out of my head?? I just had this conversation two days ago with another divorced and content woman and we both came out with the same answer: Maybe.
I love having a my uber-comfy king size bed all to myself in which I can lay sideways, backwards, or up-side-down on without having to consider anyone else’s comfort and/or tolerate snoring in the process. I like picking my own TV channels, going to Target, and running my own agenda without apology. I like eating cereal for dinner if I feel like and only having to clean up after myself. However, I loved being a wife. I loved knowing that someone legally obligated to listen to me and put up with me even when I was kind of unreasonable. I loved the extended family. I would like that again. Overall, I completely agree with you that based on the level of comfort that I have in my life currently, it would take an extraordinary man to compel me to adjust to sharing my life again. But you can trust also that if I found that man, I would do it all over again and this time I would do it much better. You can’t let love pass you by for the sake of routine or comfort. You never know when you might get another chance to make that decision again.

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Naked Girl in a Dress February 10, 2011 at 6:35 pm

Random Girl,

I completely agree, as I stated in my post, that it has to be a really special relationship to change the life I have now. And I would also remarry.

You had really good points. Thanks for sharing!

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Commenter February 10, 2011 at 5:56 pm

Never underestimate the power, potential, and warmth of love. When it works it is truly wonderful.

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Naked Girl in a Dress February 10, 2011 at 6:36 pm

I agree that love is a wonderful thing.

Come back tomorrow and Monday as I wrap up this series on Love & Relationships.

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SuzRocks February 10, 2011 at 7:54 pm

If I were to ever get divorced, I highly doubt I’d remarry- I had to go through all those issues to get married the FIRST time around. I don’t see how I’d ever overcome them a SECOND.
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Naked Girl in a Dress February 10, 2011 at 8:22 pm

Suz,

There would be a lot to overcome, but I bet you would. Hopefully you will just stay happily married though.

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BrerMatt February 10, 2011 at 8:11 pm

I agree with you. Never settle.

Asking myself whether I’d marry again or not is kinda useless until there’s a real woman attached to the other end of the thoughts.
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Naked Girl in a Dress February 10, 2011 at 8:24 pm

BrerMatt,

I suggest you work out a clearly-defined list of qualities you are looking for so you don’t fall into a bad relationship. I can speak from experience.

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BrerMatt February 10, 2011 at 8:39 pm

I’m not a list-making type of person. I’m pretty aware of what I like and what I would need from a relationship. I’ve been divorced for 6 years, and had both good and bad relationships during that time. I’m not looking for a relationship now.
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Naked Girl in a Dress February 10, 2011 at 8:50 pm

Well then it sounds like you will be prepared when you are ready to start dating again.

Sandy February 11, 2011 at 3:57 pm

As a widow, I feel the same way. While I miss my husband, I am content with my life for the most part. I have lived in the same small town since 1994 and have lots of friends always willing to help me around the house should I need it. It would take someone really special for me to even consider marrying again.

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Naked Girl in a Dress February 11, 2011 at 4:41 pm

I am in complete agreement Sandy. I plan to be open to the idea if the right man comes into my life though. I don’t want to miss out in life as a result of a fear to change.

Best of luck!

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Kate February 18, 2011 at 11:02 pm

I’m divorced AND remarried. I had two kids when I remarried, and now I have three. What it took for me was someone who accepted that my kids were part of the deal AND loved them like they were his. Not to mention loved the heck out of me.

My ex-husband also remarried, and his new wife had a daughter at the time. No way would I tolerate my kids being given the kind of second-class citizen he gives his step-daughter.
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Kate February 18, 2011 at 11:08 pm

OK…I finished typing, submitted, and had more to say. (I usually have more to say). Here’s the hard thing about remarrying when kids are already in the picture. When you first marry, typically (at least, in the old-fashioned way) the kids you have come from that marriage and are born from that relationship. While raising kids is one of the most important things in a relationship, the husband-wife relationship should (in my opinion) be the priority. That works in a first marriage.

In a second marriage where kids are part of the deal, when you put your relationship with your husband first (and anyone who reads my blog very regularly would laugh because right now our life is pretty consumed with all of the activities of three kids and it’s very difficult to make much time for our relationship), it can look like you’re choosing him over your kids in a way that’s different than when you’re with their dad. I don’t know if this is making any sense. I’m very lucky in the man who’s sharing my children with me, and it still gets tricky. Worth it, but tricky.

Sorry for the book.
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Naked Girl in a Dress February 19, 2011 at 8:27 am

Kate~

No apologies needed! I love to receive comments from readers. One of the best aspects is that I learn from my readers and I am so grateful for that.

It is tricky navigating dating as a single mom and I know it will be complicated remarrying. I would love, at some point in my life, to have a successful marriage. So I do hope it will work out for me. If it does, hopefully my readers will help me as I move into that stage of my life.

It sounds like you and your husband are succeeding as a couple and with co-parenting. Good for you!

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Roxanne July 10, 2011 at 1:45 pm

I totally get your post. I’m divorced but not in a relationship and haven’t been in a real one since the separation. I find it hard to imagine being a girlfriend, let alone a wife. But I’m not a man hater. I just can’t picture it. My Ex-Husband recently remarried. I think he needs to be married. Though it would provide me with some benefits, I feel like I’m not seeking it emotionally. I like sleeping alone. But I could fall in love and remarry. It would be completely different, mostly because we would never have children together. I do think it would be romantic, though, because in order for me to open up like that, it would have to be a mind-blowing love and companionship, it would really be earth-moving. I’m not completely jaded. There would have to be a prenup, though. ha!

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Jeff May 12, 2013 at 12:31 am

The most common source of problems in marriages is that the couple misinterpreted their mutual feelings of attraction as love. This normally results in the couple trying to keep up appearances after about 5 years, and wondering where the love went.

It is important to know that attraction is an emotional feeling that may fade, while love is a promise that has little to do with attraction. If you are thinking of getting married, then please read “Attraction is a feeling. Love is a promise.” by Grenville Phillips, president of Walbrent College.

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Naked Girl in a Dress May 22, 2013 at 11:00 am

You have some great points, Jeff. Thanks for visiting and commenting.

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