Look Before You Leap
We don't exactly advocate dating a separated man. But if you're determined to go down that road, here are the rules to live by.
Rule #1: Understand the separation
First and foremost, you'll need to have a healthy respect for the fact that your prospective date is still married. Separated isn't divorced, so he still has legal commitments to his wife. With that said, people get separated for all kinds of reasons, so it's important to understand the ins and outs of his separation and what the separation is supposed to accomplish. Before falling head over heels, have an answer to the following questions:
Rule #2: Put away your jealousy
As painful as it is to hear, your prospective date has no commitment to you. He does, however, have a legal and emotional commitment to his wife until the divorce is finalized. The commitments are even more pronounced and complicated if he has children with his wife. As he goes through the process of separation, he will likely need to visit and converse with his wife. You cannot be jealous if he follows through on his commitment.
Rule #3: Know your risks
Just like dating single men, dating a separated man has inherent risks. There's no way to remove all risks associated with dating, but you need to approach your prospective date with an awareness of the risks you're taking on. While each situation is different, consider the following risks associated with dating a separated man, and protect yourself accordingly:
Rule #4: Beware of rebound
If he cannot provide a good answer for why he's dating prior to the finalization of the divorce, just beware that you may be his rebound. Some women are OK with serving as a rebound as long as they get something from the deal, but many women are not. If you think you may be his rebound, take your emotional and physical relationship slow and steady. You do not want to have an emotionally entangled and confusing relationship in which you feel used at the end.
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