You say you haven’t felt like this in ages.
You send me love letters, your good morning texts make my day, you take me on real dates.
You are a gentleman and treat me like gold. You are sweet and attentive, kind and so charming. But I am sorry, newly divorced man. I can’t be with you.
Writer Jane Robinson calls them “transitional men.” They are everywhere on dating sites. But I can’t date them.
Newly divorced men. Separated men. Men just out of a long-term relationship. I don’t date them until they have been out of transition for at least a year.
I am like honey to men in transition.
I am wild and free and sensual.
I represent all the worries you don’t have; I’m not the alimony you have to pay or the ex who is disappointed in you. I am not the arguments and unhappiness you have endured for years. I am not the lonely bed you slept in.
I am exciting and fun. I am affectionate and playful. I’ll give you the attention you’ve been starving for.
You may be handsome. Intelligent. Sexy. But if you’re newly out of a divorce, I can’t see you.
Newly single men are still figuring things out.
Their worlds have come apart, and now they are faced with new versions of themselves. They have gone from husband or boyfriend to single. They are learning who they are as single men. Perhaps they haven’t been one in decades. Even if they aren’t aware of it, they are changing. They aren’t steady. They aren’t grounded. It’s not their fault; it’s simply where they are in life.
It’s an unavoidable state we all go into. I am in it right now, which is why I am not dating. I’ve been through transition several times. I get it.
I have been divorced, twice. That makes me an expert on transitions.
I don’t want some guy who will go all lovestruck (like men often do) and then back out a few months later and break my heart because he wants to “feel single and free.” I want the real deal.
I am the feminine.
I yearn for your safety and your strength.
I yearn to know you’ll be here, not just for a few months.
I want to surrender to you. I want to receive and feel pleasure and feel amazing when I am with you. I want to trust you.
I don’t want to compare myself to your ex. And no, she wasn’t as bad as you say she was. Perhaps she gave you children. At one time, she gave you love. I am not in a competition with her. I am not here to perform or show you I am everything she wasn’t.
I want a relationship. F*ck yes, I want a relationship and I want and deserve the best. Not just with any man, but the one who is my champion, my warrior. The man who knows his direction and purpose in life. You can’t know that right now because your whole world is upside down.
Maybe she left, maybe you left.
Maybe you wanted to leave for years. Maybe you wanted nothing more but to feel the love your heart has been aching for. But I can’t make it better for you. I can’t make the loneliness go away. It’s not my job.
I want my partner and I want him healthy. Healthy doesn’t start with rebound relationships, not for me.
Yes, neither one of us has to be perfect, but we have to be aware of our own sh*t. We have to grieve the marriages that ended, the dreams that died. We have to recreate who we are and commit to healing.
I don’t want a man who bounces from woman to woman or logs onto a dating site before the ink on their divorce papers is even dry.
I certainly don’t want a man who is still legally married to another woman.
I don’t care how you spin it. I don’t care if you feel nothing for her. I don’t care if you feel numb. The answer is still “no.”
I may feel good to you, but I can’t be your savior. I can’t make you feel safe. These battles are your own. Go out and fight them yourself.
I want my rock. And no, newly divorced man, you can’t be it. I know you want to, but you can’t.
“But my marriage was dead,” you may say. Well, good marriages don’t break up. That’s why we divorce.
Perhaps it was sexless. Is that my problem to remedy? My body and sex are not food for the starving.
Perhaps your marriage was for convenience. Still not my problem.
Perhaps you may think I am being unfair. Or cold. Perhaps you think you’re the exception. You’re not.
This isn’t about fairness; this is about what my heart, spirit, and body need. Despite your best efforts, you won’t be able to give it now. Despite my best efforts, I’ll never feel fully able to surrender my heart and body to you. Even if I try, my body just knows. My heart knows. Until you’re solid, I’ll just pull away from you.
And the truth is, this isn’t just for my heart. It’s for your own good. I can’t interfere with your healing.
When you come out of this, you’ll be 10 times the man you were. Watch. I see the man you can be if you commit to yourself and your healing. But I cannot fall in love with your potential. And the timing is just wrong.
I am not a transitional woman.
I am one who is here for the long haul. I am not a casual woman. I don’t do casual sex and I don’t do casual relationships. They don’t feel good to me.
A synonym for transition is “evolution.” If you’re willing to do the work, you’ll be an evolved man. But along the way, you’ll be dating and seeing and likely sleeping with many women while you figure this sh*t out. I just won’t be one of them.
Sorry, newly divorced man. But no. You can be mad at me, that’s okay.
You can label me as an avoidant or difficult if it makes you feel better. There are plenty of women out there who will give you a whirl. Have fun. Maybe even look me up when you’ve done the work. If I’m available, I’ll give you a chance.
But until then, I’ll pass.