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#2414931 08/09/10 12:25 PM
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I know someone whose wife died and he's getting into another relationship very quickly.
Somewhere I read a general rule of thumb for the length of time after a divorce until you're ready to date (it had to do with the length of the marriage) and I was just wondering if anyone knows where to find it.
IMHO, it takes longer to recuperate from death than divorce. I think we are very vulnerable after being widowed.


Enacting life's lessons into positive change... .
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There used to be established protocol for grieving. Widowed spouses used to have to wear black for a year and not leave the house socially. This was more than just a custom. It was a sign to the world that they were grieving and vulnerable. The first year after a death, you can have such manic mood swings from tears to laughter that it would make the non-grieving public very uncomfortable. I am not recommending going back to all black or veils. But, waiting at least a year still seems extremely reasonable to me.

The problem is that we don't want to wait for the grieving process to run its course (whether from death or divorce). We want to stop hurting NOW. It doesn't happen that way. We make poor choices that we think will ease the pain of the grieving process which never solve the true issue. Grief takes time to subside. Waiting is not what we want to do.


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If you are thinking of lecturing the guy, please mind your own business. It is easy to stand on the outside and judge, but the guy is within his rights to be with whomever he wants.
He met someone he likes.. he's supposed to break it off and be miserable because of some rule that other people expect him to follow?
Waiting for waiting's sake is nonsense. If it's really too soon, then it won't work out and is that so bad?

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I didn't get the sense that K was going to be lecturing anyone. Although sometimes, a gentle word can prevent a boatload of pain.

No one is suggesting waiting for waiting's sake. But, it's really important to establish the new normal, like without your loved one, before you jump into a relationship. If you don't, the relationship may not work out, but it may be too late to discover that it's not working out. For example, people jump into a relationship and get married before they are healed enough to see it's not a good fit.



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OP: It may be that it's best to wait while we grieve, but people have to learn that lesson on their own. It could be that he'll go in and out of relationships and then realize he wasn't ready for that at some later date. Other people wait and they grieve only to find they are still upset once confronted with being in a relationship anyhow. There is no perfect rule. I would say that the guy, hopefully, is choosing to talk with close friends and family about how he's doing. Still, it's his life. He'll have to figure out what is best for himself and any children that may/may not be involved (hopefully there aren't any).


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Actually, I was wanting to view the place on this site that had the rule of thumb, it was a good guidance.


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I thought I had read on here it was wait 1 year for each 5 years of marriage, if I remember correctly. In my case, I was married 13 years, so 2-3 years of waiting was recommended.


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I've heard the "1 year for each 5 years" you were together, but can't remember if it was from here or the DivorceCare class I took.


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Originally Posted by DaisyTheCat2
I've heard the "1 year for each 5 years" you were together, but can't remember if it was from here or the DivorceCare class I took.

I've also heard 1 MONTH for each year together and I think that is more reasonable....I can't fatham waiting 5 years to start dating again.

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I think a lot depends on what you mean by dating. If it's casual, like going out for dinner or drinks or a movie, you probably don't need to wait a year. But,I do think it's a little ... unseemly to get into a serious relationship less than a year out for the death. But, I'm a bit old fashioned that way. I would also say that if you jump into another relationship when you are still grieving the loss of your spouse, you are asking for trouble.

Besides, I can't imagine only waiting a few months to date after Mike died, and by any of the rules above, I should have been ready. We were together three years and married one month.


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Sounds like there's no "one size fits all" rule

In that DivorceCare class, there was a woman whose husband left her after 30+ years of marraige. I could certainly see her point about not wanting to wait six more years, since she was concerned about already being in her late 50s.

I, personally, had been dating (divorced almost a year, seperated almost two years) but realized I was breaking off these potential relationships because *I* wasn't ready! So I'm taking a bit of a break right now, and just focusing on my son and finances.



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1 year for every 5 years of marriage. Hmmm. That means I can start to date in 7 years, at the age of 68. That makes as much sense to me as the advice I was given that at my age, I "should look for a man 80 years old"!


BS -me 69 WS - him 68
Married 40 years
OW - "daughter" added to family 1/05 for "Fathering healing" - 26 years younger
EA 1/05 - 12/07 PA 8/07 - 12/07
NC 1/08
DDay March 30, 2008
Separation Feb. 17, 2010 two days before our 33 anniversary
DDs 31, 25
WH served me for divorce Sept. 18, 2014
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Originally Posted by FredinVA on Opt's thread
I heard once in A.A. that it takes about a month of sobriety for every year of drinking to "recover." For me, I speculate that a similar "formula" exists.
77 - this formula puts you 3 years out. I just cut your time in half!

Honestly, I think the formula's are good starting points. After that you have to look at how you are healing and the pace of that healing. Somebody around here recently pointed out that it's not necessarily time that heals all wounds, but what we actually do with that time (might have been Greengables, in fact). This made a lot of sense to me. I'm now sharing experiences with my sister who was divorced many years ago - I don't think she's used her time prudently, and therefore has really not fully recovered from D, unfortunately. Meanwhile, I feel that my personal recovery is moving along at a reasonable clip due to getting good advice here (and following most of it....) and other things I've done to concentrate on trying to eliminate behaviors that lead to the demise of my M.

77, I think age and wisdom can shrink the grieving time as well. You presumably have a more bountiful experience base on which to draw for your own healing process. You probably know yourself much better now than you did when you were in your 30's (presumably the age groups these stats/formulas are based on). I am in a business where my clientele are mostly in the 60's and up, so I say all that with the utmost respect and no lack of understanding.

opt


Me: 43 y.o. BFWH, D-day 11/11/09 (NC since 9/01)
Divorce from WW final 9/16/10.
Current Status: MB-based Marriage to Nature Girl 12/8/12 (first date on 12/11/10)
Mine: S(16), D(11)
NatureGirls: S(23), D(21)
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