Is The Stigma Against Dating Divorced People Justified?

stigma against dating divorced peopleMany people out there try to avoid dating someone who has been married and divorced before. I don’t think that the stigma against dating divorced people is justified. In fact, if you meet someone in their 30-40’s who has never been married, this should be way more alarming to you.

Having been married means that the person committed or at least wanted to commit to someone at one point in their life. This also means that someone else was interested in him/her enough to go through with the marriage and live together for however long it lasted. This is a positive sign, unless of course we are talking about someone who has had very short marriages and who has been divorce several times, as this is an obvious sign of instability and cause for concern.

On the other hand, if you meet someone who has been dating for 20 years or more and has never gotten married, but you are now looking for a serious relationship, you have to ask yourself what possible reasons there could be that the guy or the woman you started seeing never got married till now. Even though there could be lots of person reasons for this, the two most common reasons are: (a) either they were not looking for a commitment (and chances are they still aren’t) or (2) they were looking for a commitment, but there is something about them that has been an obstacle to being in that kind of relationship – some kind of deal-breaker that turned their potential partners off. You may be puzzled by why someone you started dating and who seems perfect hasn’t gotten married before. However,  don’t assume too much too soon. Give it time and you might just found the answer to this question. It’s quite possible that this “perfect” person you met is not so perfect after all.

Going back to those who were married before, don’t hold a divorce against them. If someone wanted to be in a marriage at one point and who had experienced formal commitment, but it ended up not working out for whatever reason, this could happen to anyone, including you. While the details of that marriage and the reasons for divorce are important to find out, and you will likely only hear one side of the story, this should not be some kind of automatic deal breaker for you. There are lots of wonderful people out there, who have a lot to offer, and who have history of being married. That experience might have made them better, more interesting and wiser, so there is no reason to avoid dating divorced people, and you should treat them like any other dating prospect – on an individual basis and without stereotyping in advance.

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About practicalh

Practical, effective dating tips and relationship advice.
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neil5
neil5
5 years ago

I used to think I could never get involved with a divorced woman. However, I actually married a formerly divorced woman earlier this year and we’re both about 40.

As one of my good friends advised, the fact that she was married means that at least she was wasn’t whoring around for the past 20 years like a lot of women do.

practicalh
5 years ago
Reply to  neil5

good point. On a related note, it’s unrealistic to expect a woman not to have history of marriage or serious relationships by 40, and if she doesn’t have such a history – it’s a bigger warning sign.

Bob Rakole
Bob Rakole
5 years ago

I think it’s a case by case basis. Sometimes it’s people maturing and learning from their mistakes. Other times it’s immature people refusing to change. I think if a person is on their 2nd or 3rd divorce, I’m really skeptical.

practicalh
5 years ago
Reply to  Bob Rakole

Absolutely. If nothing else, you have to wonder why the person keeps rushing into marriage if it didn’t work out once or more than once.