Dating during legal separation

After all, there's a good chance that you get involved with that person and they drop that, "I'm getting back with my ex" bomb on you. And let's face it, there's a great risk in being the first new relationship for the soon-to-be divorcee.

Do you really want to be the rebound or the buffer between the old life and the new one?

One of the most common temptations people fall for when a relationship is ending is the desire to find a new love - Often these people have been unhappy and missing love, companionship and sex for a longtime, and so there's a real pent-up, unmet need for love.

Since I counsel men and women before, during and after a relationship or marriage, including through a divorce, I frequently see people dating when separated.

Under North Carolina General Statute 50-6, a couple must be separated for one year before a divorce is final.

Even though separated, you are still technically married until the court enters the order granting the divorce.

Even when the divorce is amicable, as mine was over a decade ago, the massive weight of the realization that the world you had built with your soon-to-be-ex and the end of your journey with a person who at some point was the closest person in the world to you is downright smothering. Are we supposed to see each other a certain number of times a week? Or do you tell them that the marriage is over, no chance of being mended and that the paperwork is simply a formality? I recall going through that period, knowing full well that the marriage was over and that, indeed, the paperwork was just the final punctuation.

It's an awful, soul-crushing rollercoaster and every time someone sarcastically remarks how easy it is for people to get divorced or how so-and-so "just left their marriage," my head feels like it's about to explode. However when I would reveal to someone in whom I was potentially interested that I was separated, they invariably would shy away.

Dating while going through a divorce can have a number of negative effects on the divorce proceedings, both in court and emotionally.

Additionally, while every state is now a no-fault divorce state, marital misconduct can still be considered in some situations.

You’ve moved out, gotten your own place, and you’re starting to think about moving on with your life.

You’re starting to notice other people when you go out and want someone to spend time with, someone who appreciates your company. While this may sound like a good idea, there are several problems to consider.

North Carolina law still permits an action for “alienation of affection” against a third party whom the plaintiff feels is responsible for ending the marriage.

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