Does your date know you are divorced? When should you tell them about your divorce? What is the best way to tell them?
When to tell your date about your marital status
Perhaps your date does not know you are divorced. Some people have strong views regarding divorce and dating divorced people. It is good to tell your date as early as possible if you are divorced or not. While many people have no problem with it, some may feel misled if they are not told early on. It is good to know that your date has strong views up front rather than getting attached and being hurt by them.
When to talk about your divorce
Telling your date that you are divorced may lead to questions about your divorce. Try to keep your answers short and minimal. Tell them that you would rather talk about happier things right now but would be happy to discuss it at a later time. This way you are clearly saying that you are not trying to hide it but would rather return to this subject later.
Discussions of divorce on a first date are not usually a good idea because these are often negative experiences in our lives and therefore not suitable for a first date. The first date is about slowly getting to know the other person and enjoying their company. It is an evaluation also and nothing will turn off a date more than a tirade about how horrible your ex is and how awful your divorce was.
As you continue to date, your conversations will slowly become more intimate, detailed and more serious. The subject should naturally arise and the first time it is brought up, you can test the waters by providing some limited information and then see if your date has any questions or pursues the issue.
Hopefully you have reached a place where you have a balanced view of your divorce as part of your life history and not something you are reliving every day. Make sure you communicate that fact to your date so they are clear that you are not living in the past. Do not make your ex out to be the devil himself and do communicate how you feel you contributed to the divorce and what changes you have made. We all make mistakes. It is how we respond to those mistakes that matters.
What if my date reacts negatively?
Understand what it is your date is reacting to. Ask them directly if you can. Even if you can't fix what has happened, you can learn something from the experience. It may be a legitimate reason and may point to something that you haven't resolved since your divorce. Acknowledge how they feel even if you do not agree. Instead of becoming very defensive, try to listen to what they are saying without prejudging them. This is great practise for good relationship communication.
What if my date reacts negatively and doesn't want to see me again?
Be gracious. Accept that this is how they feel. Divorced people especially those who were not the leavers (leavers as in those that decided to initiate the divorce) in the divorce may take rejection hard. Rejection is part of the process of dating. Not everyone will be suitable for you and not everyone will accept you as their future partner. Learn what you can and bow out gracefully.