When people get married, it’s with the hope that they’ll do it one time and live happily ever after “till death do us part.” Unfortunately, life has this nasty habit of not giving a crap about our hopes and dreams. Enter divorce and premature death of a spouse just to name a few. For whatever reason, you may find yourself considering giving it another go after being burned the first or second, or fifth time. No one’s judging and hope is the last to die after all. Here are some things to consider if you’re thinking of remarrying.
Take your time and reflect on the relationship
Give yourself some time to heal from the heartache of losing your previous partner. You need to grieve and heal from that loss and if you have children, you should allow them that time as well. Use this time to consider what went wrong, asking yourself tough critical questions especially in the case of divorce.
Look at the relationship, consider your own behaviour and think about what you would want to be different in a future relationship, your partner, and your own conduct. This time will also be useful in assessing your readiness for such a significant commitment.
Consider remarriage statistics
We like to imagine it will be different for us, but we are rarely the exception and oftentimes the rule. It turns out that when it comes to remarrying, the odds are not in your favour which is not to say you shouldn’t do it, just that you should likely have a proper understanding of the potential hurdles ahead of you.
In the U.S., on average 67% and 73% of second and third marriages respectively end in divorce. One of the reasons advanced for this high rate is that most people enter the second marriage as a rebound, while vulnerable and without giving themselves sufficient time to recover from the loss of the previous relationship.
Remarriages experience a host of challenges that first marriages may not have to contend with. Considering this beforehand helps you plan accordingly.
Date for at least 24 months
Rushing into another marriage spells disaster. People rush into relationships for various reasons including being lonely after previously having a long-term partner. Resist the impulse to rush into another one. Once you start dating, date for at least two years before making a legal commitment like marriage. A common consensus among marriage experts is to wait at least two to three years after the dissolution of the previous union before remarrying.
Consider the children
If you have children, remarrying becomes even more complicated. It may mean they have to let go of any hopes of a reunion between the parents and begin grieving the loss of their previous family unit. Don’t rush them or minimize this grief.
Manage your expectations when it comes to your children and the new partner. Consider what you will tell them and how you will explain this new relationship to them. Make it clear that the new spouse is not a replacement for their parent, that it’s okay to be sad about the loss of the previous union and they are under no obligation to like or love the new partner.
Stepparents can build strong relationships with the children, but it will take time. The average stepfamily takes five to seven years to combine with some taking longer. There are no quick solutions, just patience and putting in the effort.
Tips for making your remarriage work
- Make your marriage a priority
- Deal with any anger and resentment from past relationships
- Work on communication and maintain openness and honesty in the new relationship
- Address any issues as they arise, before they become bigger problems
- Learn how to manage conflict
- Work on building positive relationships with stepchildren if there are any
- When remarrying, finances are a touchy subject. Money: 7 Financial Issues In Marriage That Could Lead To Divorce
- Disciplining your partner’s children is also an issue that you should discuss beforehand to get a clear picture of what is or is not allowed. 6 Things To Discuss When Co-Parenting
- Go for marriage therapy. Here are some Couples Therapy Exercises You Can Try At Home