When you’re dating over a certain age, you’ve probably experienced all that love has to offer, from the first date butterflies to the first kiss, to your first fight as a couple and the first time say “I love you.”
But things don’t always work out according to plan. As the glow of your first true love fades into a distant memory, you might find yourself wondering how you could have been so wrong about love, and how you’ll know for sure when you’ve found it again. Letting go isn’t easy, but it’s worth it. Here is how to tell that you’ve moved on from your first (or second, or third!) loves and are ready to fall in in love again.
1. You aren’t constantly asking yourself “What if…” It’s normal to look back on past relationships and briefly wonder what could have been different, but if you find yourself permanently rooted in coulda, woulda, shoulda land, it might be a sign that you aren’t ready to move on. There are always going to be things you wish you could change, but it’s impossible to go back in time. Coming to peace with where you are in life and in love isn’t easy, but it’s worth it to be free from the past.
2. You are totally content on your own. When a relationship ends, a knee jerk reaction is to jump head first into the dating game. Sometimes though, it’s best to hold back. Instead of worrying about how to act on a first date and all the stress that comes with dating, take some time to focus on yourself and regroup. This way, when you do meet someone special, you’ll know you want them simply because they’re awesome, not as a distraction to your broken heart.
3. You are being honest with yourself. You know what one of the worst feelings ever is? Dating a guy who is great/amazing/wonderful…only to know deep down in your heart that you just aren’t over your ex yet. Timing really is everything in this situation-no matter how badly you wish you were further along in the healing process, it can’t be rushed.
4. You are open with friends and family. Sure, you don’t have to tell your inner circle everything, but generally speaking if you feel good about something, you want to share it. Introducing a new love to those who are most important to you solidifies to them that you have moved on-and want them to move forward as well.
5. You aren’t hoping for a reconciliation. Some breakups, specifically divorces, are particularly painful and take a toll on every aspect of your life. Even if the relationship was clearly wrong for you, in the back of your mind you might find yourself wishing you and your ex would get back together because it would just be easier.But if you are truly ready to fall in love again, you won’t give up until you’re free from the past and have broken through to the other side.
How can you tell when you’ve healed from a breakup?