Dating a Divorced Dad is different and whether you are a newly single mom or just a single woman looking for dating and relationship advice; SingleDad is your Single Parent Dating Advice resource. This month, our Ask SingleDad question comes from a Divorced Dad who can’t stop thinking about his ex-wife. Read more…
Thinking About My Ex
I recently divorced one year ago after a 16
year marriage. We were separated two years before the divorce. I have a pretty
civil relationship with my ex and we have two children together. I still have
feelings for her and can’t seem to stop thinking about her. She has moved on
and is in another relationship but she still says one day we may get back
together when I say what happened to us. I have been though counseling, support
groups, and surround myself with a good group of friends but still continue to
struggle with the ideal that we are no longer together. I’m wondering does
these feelings I have for my ex ever go away and any suggestions to help cope
would be very helpful.
Karl in Kentucky
Let me begin with a quote that I need you to understand:
" We don’t choose tragedy in our lives, but we can choose what to do with
Now I don’t know both sides of the story of your former life with your
ex, but I can rest assure you that I can relate to your position. You see, I
was "that guy" trying to sort out what happened to my wife and I and
was going through the same process of grieving with a broken heart. As much as
I wanted to deny these feelings; I just couldn’t stop thinking of her. All
those thoughts of what she is doing, where she is at in her life didn’t add up
to nothing but lost time on my calendar. Frankly, at the time, I would have
done anything to keep my marriage together. As crazy as it sounds; I went out
to her parents house where she was hiding and surrounded her parent’s drive way
with hundreds of lit candles in the shape of "half a heart"…. I
can still remember her father coming out to the driveway to console me.
"We don’t choose tragedy in our lives, but can choose what to do
As strange as it
sounds, it was the best advice I could have ever heard. You can’t control the
choice of another person, you can only control your own. You will recover from
this Karl, but you first have to put your mind and thoughts "In forward
motion". My advice to you is
not so simple. You will have to put a lot of trust into the things that you can’t
see, touch, or hear Karl. What I mean is that you need to surround yourself
with support and at the same time offer yourself as a resource. You will have
to break your norm and find "new things" to do with your time and
Here’s a quick list of things that helped me get through the tough
times and I think will help you get fast forward:
- If you can afford it, buy a new bed
- If you can’t afford a new bed, buy new
- Paint your bedroom, buy new pillows and
change your bedroom set up
- Start each day by scheduling time to
"do stuff" such as join a gym that offers a "Class".
Join the class that will teach you something different. Change is
important for you and you need to embrace it, don’t fear it.
- Pay attention to the balance of your
body needs. Eat better, get adequate sleep and spend quality time being
"present" with your kids.
- Enroll your children into an activity
that you all can enjoy together. Example, grow a garden and learn together
how to do it together. Engage your life with them.
- Become a mentor to someone. Find a
community group that interests you and you have something to offer your
- Start a Journal. Write your thoughts and
get your story off your mind and on to paper. This is what we call
"freedom from thoughts".
One final piece of advice that I
discovered for myself was to enroll my life back into church. This was a
personal decision and I am not asking you to do it for me. I have
discovered over the past 6 years, I have helped many divorced dads like you live more
productive and meaningful lives when they find their purpose in life through
the messages they learn from church. I believe that faith creates the
foundation for everything.During these tough times, itis easy to turnaway from your faith, however, it is exactly times like these that you should turn towards your faith.
These are just a few examples that I
can offer you to get started on a more positive and productive life after
Keep me posted.
Richard “RJ” Jaramillo, is the Founder of SingleDad.com,
a website and social media resource dedicated to single parenting and specifically for the newly divorced, re-married, widowed and single Father with children.
RJ is self employed, entrepreneur living in San Diego and a father of three children. The mission of SingleDad is to help the community of Single Parents
“Make Life Happen…Again!”