In many cases, immediately after going through a divorce, a person is not too interested in getting into a relationship with someone new. Hurt feelings, sadness, grief, even anger are quite common. These emotions need to be dealt with and moved through before the person can truly open up to loving another.

Of course there are also practical issues that may need to be resolved after a divorce. So not only is there potentially an emotional roller coaster happening within the person, there may also be challenges about housing, childcare and finances taking up attention and energy on a day-to-day basis.

This is probably not the time that people will attract and enter a new love relationship.

After a period of time when most of the practical matters have been resolved, the person might meet another, feel attracted to him or her and want to go on a date. Or it could be that the person has been casually dating in this post-divorce time and is now starting to have more serious feelings about another person.

At this threshold of starting to date again or getting ready to make a relationship commitment, doubts and questions might arise. For example, the person might worry that he or she will repeat the same disconnecting patterns in this new relationship. Worries that this new partner will cheat or hurt him or her might also surface.

It could also be that truly moving on, in whatever way that happens, feels unsteady and even uncomfortable. If a significant portion of the person's life was spent in the marriage that ended, it might feel difficult to finally let go.

Jeff has been divorced for over 2 years now. He and his ex-wife Cheryl share custody of their three children. At first, there were many conflicts between Cheryl and Jeff. But now they've all settled in to this new way of living. Jeff even joins Cheryl and her boyfriend to celebrate the kids' birthdays and other special occasions.

During the past 2 years of being newly single, Jeff has dated women and enjoyed getting to know new people. He's never had a committed relationship, however. Jeff hasn't really wanted to get “serious,” until lately.

He's been regularly dating Sara for the past few months and really likes spending time with her. Sara has started to talk with Jeff about making a commitment to be monogamous with one another. Jeff feels torn about this.

Truth be told, he's not dating anyone else but Sara and doesn't want to. But Jeff feels resistant to the thought of taking their relationship to this next level. He worries about how it will affect the pleasant arrangement he has with Cheryl and the kids.

Get clear about what you want.
Whether you are just thinking about dating again after your divorce or if, like Jeff, you are finding yourself embarking on a committed relationship, you might have conflicting emotions. Even if you are certain you don't want to get back together again with your ex, you might still experience resistance or hesitation about moving forward. If so, just notice it. It's not going to help you to be self-critical about the way that you're feeling.

When you feel relatively calm, take some time to get clear about what you want. Perhaps you are carrying around beliefs that are standing in the way of this clarity.

Jeff checks in with himself and realizes that he does want to continue this relationship with Sara. At the same time, however, Jeff realizes a certain sadness about taking a more final step away from Cheryl. Even with Cheryl's boyfriend in the picture, he likes the feeling of being a family when they share special occasions together.

On some level, Jeff fears that getting serious with Sara will disrupt or even put an end to this closeness he feels with Cheryl and their kids.

If you notice that you are feeling some aversion to getting into a new relationship because you are fearful of totally losing your ex, just notice that. You don't have to judge it as “good” or “bad.” Even if you don't have a pleasant and congenial relationship with your ex, you might experience resistance to completely letting go of your marriage that has ended.

You don't even have to understand why it is you are feeling the fear, worry, or resistance you might be feeling. Simply noticing those emotions and allowing them to come up and then release can be extremely helpful.

Take it one step at a time.
Jeff decides to be honest with Sara. He tells her that he does really like her and would like to keep spending time together. He is open to talking more with her about what being in a committed relationship would mean for each of them.

Jeff also shares that his time with Cheryl and their kids is important to him. He is clear that getting back together with Cheryl is not his intention, but maintaining a feeling of family is. Jeff says that, just as Cheryl's boyfriend is part of these gatherings, he is open to seeing how it feels to them all for Sara to also join in too.

At this time in your life, it can make all the difference if you just take it one step at a time. Feel into yourself and make your decision based on what you feel today. Don't worry so much about what you think you might want 5 years from now or how what you want might happen. Stay rooted in the present moment and in what you want right now.

Be honest with yourself and with the person you might be dating or in a new relationship with. As you two listen to one another's needs and intentions, you can allow a wonderful relationship to develop. You can be happy and feel connected again.

Author's Bio: 

Relationship coaches Susie and Otto Collins, authors of "Should You Stay or Should You Go?" "No More Jealousy," "How to Heal Your Broken Heart" and "Red Hot Love Relationships" are experts at helping people get more of the love they really want. To get a free online course that offers the 5 keys to a closer, more loving relationship, visit