I accidentally met someone

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Stillirise

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I accidentally met someone
« on: April 14, 2021, 12:32:47 PM »
Iíve been on the fence about this post for awhile, but I feel like I need to put it out there, and see what some of you think.  For those who may not follow my other posts, stbxUPDh and I spent a year in in-home separation, and have now spent another year trying to get divorced.  It appears we are really close to getting it done.   I have had zero inclination to put myself out there to meet anyone else, other than reconnecting with old friends.  Iíve spent a lot of time doing self-work, and feel good about my progress.

Several weeks ago, I contacted an old acquaintance, who is in a line of work for which I was in need of his services.  He, ex and I are all originally from a similar rural area, meaning everyone knows everyone, and at least think they know a little about their personal business, too. After chatting about the job, he asked if it were appropriate to ask me how Iím doing personally, offered support, etc.  I also discovered heís no longer married.  We began chatting, in what seemed like a good friendship opportunity.   

Since then, it seems like thereís potential for something beyond a friendship.  I have been tuning into my gut, which is telling me this person is genuine, honest, patient, and kind.  That alone is shocking to me!  He seems to understand my situation, and is not pressuring me in any way, but is letting me know heís interested in pursuing things further if/when Iím ready.  He knows my children are my #1 priority, Iím not yet divorced, and realizes if ex finds out even a hint of something happening in my life, he will try and use it as a weapon.

The issues seem to be on my end.  Am I actually ready for this? What if by telling myself the timing is wrong, and shutting this person out, I pass up something potentially great?  Can I really just get divorced and start seeing the next guy that comes along? That seems wrong somehow, too. Am I actually overthinking this entire thing, and need to sit back and let it unfold? Probably.  At the very least, it seems Iíve maybe found a solid friendship.  Thanks for reading. As always, your thoughts on my thoughts are welcomed.
You may shoot me with your words,
You may cut me with your eyes,
You may kill me with your hatefulness,
But still, like air, Iíll rise.
óMaya Angelou

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GettingOOTF

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Re: I accidentally met someone
« Reply #1 on: April 14, 2021, 02:29:38 PM »
My experience was that I was very raw in the beginning and I waited over a year after separation to go on a date.

Everyone I dated was a million times better than my ex in how they treated me and how I felt in myself. Now looking back I see that I ignored many red flags that I wasn’t aware of at the time. I’m glad I didn’t end up with any of those men if for no other reason than I’m a really different person now I’ve had time to work on myself and figure out what I actually want. I did meet someone I ended up falling very hard for. It didn’t work out for a few reasons. I often wonder if I met him today would I still have fallen for him or was it more a case of where I was mentally and emotionally at the time.

I think there’s nothing wrong with dating straight away if it’s kept causal. I know for myself I tend to get attached so it was risky for me. There are also a lot of great seeming men out there who look for women newly out of relationships. It’s a red flag for me now.

At the end of the day only you can know for yourself.  It’s natural for you to want human connection. With our relationship history I’d tread carefully though.

You have the additional complication of your ex weaponizing this in the divorce. If he really has potential and there is something there then he will be there when you are legally “available” again.

My ex really ramped things up towards the end of the divorce process and I had to be laser focused on pushing it through and getting what I wanted out of it. I look back and honestly I was in no fit state to be in any relationship.

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eyesopen

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Re: I accidentally met someone
« Reply #2 on: April 14, 2021, 02:47:42 PM »
Since you're asking yourself whether you're ready for this (which is a good thing), it would be a good idea to take it slowly. I don't think there's reason to shut him out, just to move at whatever pace you're comfortable with. If he's a kind and respectful person who's genuinely interested in you, he'll be respectful of your timeline for moving forward. If you find things moving too quickly, you'll probably notice somehow that it doesn't feel quite right and you can back off or slow it down.

And yes, getting divorced means you can just start seeing the next guy that comes along if you want to. That's the freedom of being single. That doesn't mean you need to jump into a serious relationship with him. Spending time together, communicating with each other, building friendship and trust, those are all worthwhile things that you may have been closed off to while married or while working on yourself.

Everyone, PD or not, tries to be on their best behavior when starting a relationship. How would any of us have become involved with the PDs in our lives if they showed their true selves from the beginning? So remember, anyone who is interested in you will attempt to appear genuine, honest, patient, and kind. But after a couple months, people start letting more of their true selves show. You'll start to notice some of his flaws and he'll start to notice some of yours. If he actually is genuine, honest, patient, and kind, then that will remain consistent even when the two of you disagree or become upset. But if those traits are a faÁade, you'll eventually see the true side of him.

I'm sure you've made progress on yourself since the separation started. However far you think you've come, you still have a long way to go. Meeting new people may help you discover some of the baggage you've been carrying that you didn't notice before. That can be helpful, but only if you continue to strive for personal growth and don't fall too quickly into another relationship.

Don't compromise yourself for anyone. Set boundaries and enforce them. Always be paying attention and learning from others and from your own experiences. Enjoy your life and your freedom whether it's with someone else or not.

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Penny Lane

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Re: I accidentally met someone
« Reply #3 on: April 14, 2021, 03:12:00 PM »
Now-DH and I met when he was at a similar place you are. It was definitely not ideal timing! I wish we'd met a year later when he had some time to heal and to figure out his coparenting relationship.

Obviously it worked out, though, so I can't say I feel like I should discourage you from pursuing this.

The best thing he did when we started dating: Rock solid boundaries around the kids. Like I didn't even meet them for a very long time. Both because of the divorce and for their sake.

What I wish we had both done: Boundaries around our own emotions and taking it slow rather than jumping in emotionally and trying to go 100% as he navigated a divorce.

We actually ended up breaking up for a little while so he could sort some stuff out, emotionally. That space was really healthy for us, actually. But I think we could have created that space in the relationship if we had been more purposeful. Of course, I didn't realize how bad his previous relationship really was, and he was still coming Out of the FOG when we met. It's a lot easier to see what he needed in retrospect than it was at the time.

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Stillirise

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Re: I accidentally met someone
« Reply #4 on: April 14, 2021, 03:24:37 PM »
I knew I could count on you all, to help me stay centered and focused on where I know my head should be! Thank you!

One thing thatís helpful...we currently donít live or work in the same town, and I have physical custody of the children, except for EOW.  That means down the road, things will have to move slowly, out of logistical necessity. 
You may shoot me with your words,
You may cut me with your eyes,
You may kill me with your hatefulness,
But still, like air, Iíll rise.
óMaya Angelou

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Boat Babe

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Re: I accidentally met someone
« Reply #5 on: April 14, 2021, 06:11:34 PM »
Since you're asking yourself whether you're ready for this (which is a good thing), it would be a good idea to take it slowly. I don't think there's reason to shut him out, just to move at whatever pace you're comfortable with. If he's a kind and respectful person who's genuinely interested in you, he'll be respectful of your timeline for moving forward. If you find things moving too quickly, you'll probably notice somehow that it doesn't feel quite right and you can back off or slow it down.

And yes, getting divorced means you can just start seeing the next guy that comes along if you want to. That's the freedom of being single. That doesn't mean you need to jump into a serious relationship with him. Spending time together, communicating with each other, building friendship and trust, those are all worthwhile things that you may have been closed off to while married or while working on yourself.

Everyone, PD or not, tries to be on their best behavior when starting a relationship. How would any of us have become involved with the PDs in our lives if they showed their true selves from the beginning? So remember, anyone who is interested in you will attempt to appear genuine, honest, patient, and kind. But after a couple months, people start letting more of their true selves show. You'll start to notice some of his flaws and he'll start to notice some of yours. If he actually is genuine, honest, patient, and kind, then that will remain consistent even when the two of you disagree or become upset. But if those traits are a faÁade, you'll eventually see the true side of him.

I'm sure you've made progress on yourself since the separation started. However far you think you've come, you still have a long way to go. Meeting new people may help you discover some of the baggage you've been carrying that you didn't notice before. That can be helpful, but only if you continue to strive for personal growth and don't fall too quickly into another relationship.

Don't compromise yourself for anyone. Set boundaries and enforce them. Always be paying attention and learning from others and from your own experiences. Enjoy your life and your freedom whether it's with someone else or not.

 :yeahthat:
It gets better. It has to.

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Kat54

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Re: I accidentally met someone
« Reply #6 on: April 15, 2021, 11:06:26 AM »
Keep your eyes wide open and take things very slow. Iím learning right now slow is better and not get attached and get all head over heels for someone.
You donít need another hurt so try and keep it casual. Especially if you are asking this question to yourself if this is the right thing to do.

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1footouttadefog

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Re: I accidentally met someone
« Reply #7 on: April 21, 2021, 09:24:14 PM »
Is he really the first guy to come along.  Have you seen men in the grocery, on the sidewalk, in cafes, at the gas station, neighbors etc etc etc.

Likely he is the first on who sparked an interest.  You are only being I terested at this point and there is nothing wrong with that.

Just take it slow. Slow is a great pd filter.

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eyesopen

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Re: I accidentally met someone
« Reply #8 on: April 21, 2021, 10:56:52 PM »
Keep your eyes wide open and take things very slow. Iím learning right now slow is better and not get attached and get all head over heels for someone.
You donít need another hurt so try and keep it casual. Especially if you are asking this question to yourself if this is the right thing to do.
Iíll second that. I moved quickly with someone new and it felt so wonderful and perfect. I canít remember a time I was happier or more optimistic and it seemed like she was on the same page about everything. Then, when everything was going well, she changed her mind out of nowhere and doesnít want a relationship. It hurts and I feel like Iím starting over again with working on myself. I should have moved slower but thatís really hard when it felt so right.