Are You Afraid to Date Again?

Posted by in dating after divorce, online dating after 40 | 2 comments

afraid to dateMany of my clients were married to men who treated them like crap. They stayed married for decades to cheaters, liars, men who put them down, or hit them, or didn’t provide for them in any way – emotionally or financially. They stayed in their marriage for many reasons; the well-being of the kids, financial fears and low self-esteem, to name a few. Some had given up hope, thinking that as bad as their marriages were, their friends’ marriages were not much better. Maybe this was as good as it gets?

Often, their husbands initiated the divorce. I am always surprised when a client tells me that she would have stayed. As horrible as it was, as unsafe as she felt in the marriage, she would have preferred staying. Some think they could have changed their husband. ‘If only I just said or did x, he would have come around’. And now, most are afraid to date again. 

Are You Afraid to Date Again?

Let’s explore some of the reasons why someone might be afraid to date again, and how to overcome those fears.

1. You’re afraid you won’t be able to spot the red flags soon enough. This is a common fear. I suggest you read everything out there on red flags. I have several posts about the ways to spot a narcissist, an emotionally unavailable man, and someone you are totally incompatible with. Familiarize yourself with the red flags, and you’ll be able to recognize them sooner rather than later.

2. You’re afraid you’re not worthy of love. You are worthy of love. Everyone is worthy of love. And love is an inside job. If you’re not feeling worthy, it just means that you need to do the inner work to cultivate your self-care and self-love.

  • Ask a friend for five adjectives to describe you, and do the same for her.
  • Begin a daily practice of gratitude.
  • Do good in the world, but not at the expense of addressing your own needs first.
  • Fill your batteries up by doing the things that you love.

Slowly but surely, your self-esteem will improve. You’ll realize all the ways you’re lovable. And you can go out there and date like a love-magnet.

3. You’re afraid there are not any good men to date. There are lots of good men. You just have to know how to find them. Are you dating online? If not, you should be. As scary or awful as online dating might seem, it’s statistically the best way for you to increase the ways you’re meeting men. Are you going to meetups? Find a meetup near you that might attract men and women who share your common interests, and join them. Those are just a few ways to meet good men. There are so many more…

4. You’re afraid you’ll make the same mistake again. If you don’t risk, you don’t gain. That’s a big belief of mine. Anything worth having is worth taking a risk for. Dating is one of the best ways to learn about yourself, and to repair some of your relationship patterns. Practice, practice, practice, and you’ll improve your ability to choose a better mate.

Fear is one of the biggest deterrents to living your best life. Yes, it’s scary to step out of your comfort zone. But to me, it’s scarier to imagine a life lived in fear. It keeps you safe, yes. But wouldn’t you like to live your best life? You’ll have to take a few risks to get there. And you are so worth it!

And remember, if you want to immediately turn around your online dating success, sign up here for my FREE report.





  1. You must have written this with me in mind. I get what you’re saying on an intellectual level, but I’m still too scared.

  2. Debbie,
    Thanks for your comment and your willingness to be vulnerable. The problem is that you can’t only think your way out of your fear. At some point, you have to take action, in spite of the fear. In my experience, it’s the doing that gets you unstuck and less afraid.


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