Ten things women can do to find love again
Here are 10 big reasons that hold divorced women back from finding the man of their dreams
There is no quick fix for a broken heart. Yes, Häagen Dazs and Hugh Grant help, the former more than the latter. But you will soon realise the sweet nothings and charming men only make you even more acutely aware of your own loneliness. Seema Punwani, whose sensitive debut novel 'Cross Connections' tackles the subject of finding love a second time, through a fictional tale, delves into her own experience to give you 10 big reasons that hold divorced women back from finding the man of their dreams.
Crying is ok, as long as there is a deadline: Get the tears out of your system. Give it a deadline. One week. One month. No longer. And cry to your hearts' content. And then say 'times up'!
Don't push mom away: Or mom's friends. Or friend's mums. Or aunties. Meet the eligible men they suggest. But only after you have done your full online research. Facebook. Twitter. Insta. And even LinkedIn. In finding your true love, cyberstalking will be a valuable tool.
Learn to enjoy your own company: Never sat at a cafe by yourself? Dread the words 'Table for one?' (usually accompanied with a sense of shock or a pitiful glance.) Never been to the cinema alone? Now is the time to start. Get rid of your fear of being alone. Anyway, if your crying deadline has not expired, most people would not want to hang out with you.
Ditch the rom-coms: Expand your repertoire. Follow TV show genres you haven't before. Watch different kinds of films. Even in the make-believe world, there are ways to get out of your comfort zone.
Accept dating apps: Coffee Meets Bagel, Tinder, Hinge, Bumble. These are here to stay in their current or new avatars. Get on them. S-L-O-W-L-Y. At first, the attention can be flattering, overwhelming even. And then you may spot your friend's husband or college crush on the app (which may or may not be one and the same person). Such encounters can be daunting but don’t get disheartened. Start with coffee. And don’t fall in love on the first date.
Pick your true friends: There is nothing like a divorce to lose friends. Sides are picked. And even the strongest friendships can become collateral damage. This is the best time to figure out who your true friends are. Don't be afraid to let go of the toxic or spineless ones. Surround yourself with the love and support of your real friends.
Quit self-pity and step out: Hell yeah! Don’t miss out any opportunity to meet new people. Office Christmas party. Friend’s wedding. Single mixers. Or simply meeting friends of friends. The one for you is out there. But if you stay holed at home watching Game of Thrones in your PJs, chances of meeting him are slim. Unless he is your next-door neighbour. But then that only happens in rom-coms.
Start something new: Join a trekking group or a foreign movie club. Or even the cliché, learn a new language. I had taken up Spanish classes. In spirit of full disclosure, I didn’t meet anyone. There weren't any handsome Spanish teachers. And my fellow students were half my age. And not the toy-boy Desperate Housewife-gardener variety. But I learnt how to order wine and tapas and ask for directions in Spanish which was useful when I went on a girlie holiday to Barcelona. Try one new activity a month. You may not find your next boyfriend, but you will learn something new and keep your mind off wallowing in self-pity.
Be open: It’s your second time. So, don't expect young, single boys to court you. You will attract the divorcés. Give them a chance. Just like your divorce was not your fault, neither was his. It’s better if you meet someone who have 'been-there-done-that' and has doesn’t have unrealistic notions of marriage. You can both learn from past mistakes and start life anew.
Let go of the fears: Fear of growing old alone. Fear of social stigma. Or the biggest one- fear of attending family weddings as a divorcée. Pick up a pen and paper and prepare a balance sheet of YOU. On the right-hand side list your liabilities- self-doubt, regrets, fears. And on the left-hand side note your assets- your personality, your ability to love, your dreams, your hopes. Keep writing till your assets far outnumber your liabilities.
With baby steps and an open mind. You will get there.
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