Can I Date During My Divorce?

July 20, 2013  |  Elizabeth A. Schading

Many people want to know if they can date during their divorce. You can date. There’s certainly no law against dating during your divorce. However, that doesn’t mean you should date.
One reason why you should not date is that it may inspire your spouse to fight you harder than ever before. Divorce has a strong emotional element, and that element can impact how your divorce proceeds. Issues that may have been resolved quickly could suddenly become long, drawn out, protracted battles.


This can happen even if your spouse is already dating. Even if perhaps your spouse may have initiated the divorce by leaving you for someone else.
This does not mean that your spouse will be reasonable about you dating. In his or her own mind they’re the injured party. They may feel like you’re wronging them further by dating and may try to “seek justice.”
Second, dating before your divorce is finalized could have an impact on custody proceedings. Focusing on a new sweetheart instead of your children does not look good to a judge, even if you take pains not to expose your children to the new love interest.
Exposing your children to the new love interest is bad parenting. Your children are going through enough life change – they don’t need the added confusion. They need your undivided attention and they shouldn’t have to compete for your time. It goes without saying that you should not live with your love interest prior to entry of your decree.
Every person who is heavily involved in your child’s life undergoes that kind of scrutiny, but a new boyfriend or girlfriend tends to get special attention. After all, by dating this person and exposing them to your children you are essentially announcing that you are considering the new love interest as a potential step-parent for those children.
There will be time enough to date when your divorce decree is finalized. Even then, you will want to be careful about who you bring into your children’s lives and how you do so, since there is always a chance that your spouse could file for parenting time or custody modifications.
At BGS we’re committed to getting you the best possible outcome for your divorce. We have decades of experience and we’ve navigated many sticky situations for our clients here in the Minneapolis metro area. Call us today to find out whether or not a BGS attorney is the right family lawyer for you.