Dating After Divorce

Dating After Divorce: How to Prepare for a New Chapter

According to researchers, divorce is the second most stressful life event one can experience. Preceded only by the death of a loved one and followed by a health crisis. Dating after divorce can be equally stressful if you’re not prepared. 

The first thing you should consider is how dating has evolved tremendously over the last decade. Tinder came on the scene in September 2012, followed by Bumble in 2014.

So, chances are things will be very different from first dates you’ve experienced in the past. Gone are the days of buying her flowers and picking her up at her front door for a first date

When to Get Back Out There

Unfortunately, I cannot definitively say when someone is ready to start dating after divorce. Every relationship is different; every person is different. Only you will know when you’re ready; move at your own pace.

Your friends and family will encourage you to move on and play the field. They mean well, but you know yourself better than anyone else does. Trust your gut. It’s okay if you’re not ready. 

You should wait until your marriage is officially over, including all the legalities: separation of assets, custody agreements, alimony, etc.

If you are emotionally over your ex, but the paperwork isn’t quite dry, I would advise you to just put off seriously considering another relationship for those last few months. 

Things start to get messy when you start something new without tying up all of your loose ends first. 

Secondly, ask yourself—is it really another relationship you want? Don’t fire up the dating apps just because you’re feeling a bit lonely on Sunday evening. Are you looking for validation in the form of shirtless bathroom selfies or are you truly ready to open your heart and life up to another person?

When a marriage dissolves, so does the dream of a life together. You planned forever with someone; imagined growing old with her. Then, suddenly it’s all gone. You have to take the time to mourn the loss, just as you would a death.

As painful as it is, let yourself experience the grief. Don’t try to mask it with new women—that will only delay your healing.

After about a year, most people feel ready to move on. But you should still expect some intense feelings to pop up from time to time. Trauma has a way of doing that. Allow yourself to have those mini meltdowns. It is a natural part of the healing process and it means you’re one step closer to dating after divorce.

Use this time alone to learn about yourself. Reflect on your failed marriage. Will you do anything differently next time? What characteristics will you look for when you’re ready to start dating after divorce? 

What to Expect When You’re Dating After Divorce

It’s normal to struggle with how to step out of the husband role and into the boyfriend position.

This woman has not made a commitment to you yet. You have not stood in front of God and your loved ones to say vows. You are not her husband.

Let me say that one more time—you are not her husband.

Maybe someday you will be her husband, but don’t rush it. Don’t force it. Relish your time as the boyfriend. Learn about yourself, your partner, and how you fit into one another’s lives. Use this time to see if she is someone you could spend forever with.

Don’t use intimacy to manipulate the situation. Some people use physical touch with multiple partners as a way to escape their emotions. Others combine sex and monogamy in an attempt to make the relationship progress more quickly.

Both usually end in disaster.

When you’re used to being one-half of a whole, it’s very difficult to learn how to be on your own. It’s a lonely process full of self-doubt.

There will be women who seem perfect for weeks and they will disappear out of thin air. This is called ghosting.

Try Something New

I would wager you learned a thing or two about yourself during your divorce that you didn’t know before. I challenge you to continue doing that. Expand your horizons. Try new things. Work on yourself. See a therapist. Start a new hobby.

Explore your deal breakers and really discern if they are things you need in a partner or just preferences you want. Go out with women you normally wouldn’t consider.

Give personality and common interest your primary attention, and make physical attraction a secondary criteria. Science has shown that attraction grows over time. Our brains release a cocktail of happy hormones whenever we are around people who make us laugh and feel good. 

The more time you spend with that person, the better she looks.

You may find that you’re attracted to women who look nothing like your ex. Trauma has a way of doing that too.

Trust that if your Matchmaker suggests someone, there is a definitive reason that the two of you were paired. This is your chance to meet all different types of women from various backgrounds and cultures.

Give it a shot. I dare you.


Reflection

Reflection: The First Step to a Great Life

We rarely take time out of our day-to-day lives to really dig deep and check in with ourselves. So, that’s exactly what I want you to do right now. Take a few deep breaths, and spend some time in reflection. Think about your life, decisions, relationships, triumphs and trials. 

What life lessons helped shape the person you’ve become? What is most important to you as we move through this new decade? Do you have any hopes or dreams? Are there plans you can implement right now to start moving the needle in that direction? Is there a bad habit you need to quit? Do you want to fall in love? Get married? Start a family?

Now, the good news is you can start manifesting these things and making bold changes to achieve your dreams right now

Reflection and Response

Change doesn’t come easily. In fact, it often goes against our very nature, but it’s a necessary part of life. After you’ve completed a thorough evaluation and reflection of your life thus far, it will be easier to make concrete plans for a better future.

What needs to fundamentally change for you to make room for love in your life? Maybe there’s an ex you need to let go of, or a heartbreak you haven’t fully healed from. Perhaps, 2020 just beat you down a few too many times.

COVID-19 has certainly been a worldwide wake up call. Life is short. Now is the time to be brave, bold, and confident enough to take those first steps. Your matchmaker can help you nurture the positives in your life and create a solid foundation for you to find love.

Make this Year Count

Step outside your comfort zone and make this year worthwhile. We only have so many trips around the sun, don’t you want to spend them living your dreams? 

Do you have your eye on someone new? Is there a colleague you want to get to know better? Valentine’s Day is only a week away; gather the courage to send them a card or small gift

If you’re in the early stages of a new relationship. you don’t want to overwhelm your partner by going all out before they’re ready. Open a dialogue, ask them what they think of the holiday and what sort of expectations they have surrounding it. Share your feelings as well, you’ll avoid a lot of awkwardness and embarrassment this way.

If you’re single, gather your single friends and go do a fun activity like Ax Throwing or Top Golf. Host a dinner party or game night. Try to avoid places where couples are likely to be engaging in public displays of affection. If you send yourself flowers to work, the last thing your self-esteem needs is to witness a proposal occur at the next table over.

Stay in and spoil yourself with your favorite take out and a nice bottle of wine. Treat yourself to a day at the spa. Self-care is your first line of defense. 

Many of our single clients report feeling excessive loneliness when they don’t have someone to share Valentine’s Day with. But, I have an insider tip to bring you a bit of peace and solace.

You’re not alone; a lot of people who are in happy, healthy, long-term relationships also hate Valentine’s Day.

Often, this happens because one party desperately wants to celebrate it, but the other party perceives it as a frivolous, made-up holiday. This leads to conflict and disappointment. I always coach my clients to shower your partner with love and affection regularly, not just when you feel a sense of obligation.

Whether you’re happily loved-up, completely alone, or exploring a budding relationship, Valentine’s Day can be stressful. No matter how you choose to spend it, afterward, do a little reflection and make a plan for how you hope to spend the next one. 


Luxury Valentine Gifts: 2021

Ten Luxury Valentine Gifts to Knock Their Socks Off

Luxury Valentine's Gifts for 2021

Struggling to think of ideas for luxury Valentine gifts? Need to really impress your significant other? Is your date’s primary Love Language, Gifts? Then you’ve come to the right place!

We scoured Instagram for ten of the best romantic, high-end products we could find.

Get ready to really wow your partner this Valentine’s Day, but be prepared; you’ll have to do even better next year.

Whether you’re looking for flowers, jewelry, beauty products, or something for your man, we found the perfect items to spoil your better half.

We wouldn’t be a team of Matchmakers if it didn’t come with a bit of advice, though. Typically, our rule of thumb is, if you weren’t dating on New Year’s Eve, we would caution you before going all out with any luxury Valentine gifts.

That being said, relationships tend to move quicker during Quarantine, so use your best judgement, and Happy Shopping!


Date a Doctor

So You Want to Date a Doctor?

Well, you’ve come to the right place.

First, on behalf of all of us here at Executive Matchmakers, I would like to say a sincere thank you to all of the health care workers and front line staff for their continued selfless work during the COVID-19 pandemic. We urge you all to please continue to follow all CDC Guidelines to keep everyone safe, especially if you want to date a doctor!

  • Stay home except for necessary outings.
  • When you have to go out, practice social distancing.
  • Wear a mask when you interact with anyone outside of your household.
  • Wash your hands often.
  • Avoid touching your face.
  • Do not gather in large groups.

How to Meet Single Doctors

Right now, it’s more difficult than ever to meet new people in a safe way. It can be virtually impossible for a medical professional to carve time out of his busy schedule to sort through pages of dating profiles. That’s why we’re here; we have matched thousands of happy couples.

For our male clients, we do all the hard work of narrowing the overwhelming dating pool down to potential matches that fit into his lifestyle.

Eligible women are encouraged to join our matchmaking database at no cost; it’s safe, confidential, and discreet. Don’t worry, we will never spam you or sell any of your information. Apply online with recent photos and you could be on a date with one of our bachelors in no time.

Our professional staff will review your application, and if we think you may be a fit for one of our clients, we will contact you to set up an interview with one of our Matchmakers.

What to Expect When You Date a Doctor

Even before the first date you can make some pretty fair assumptions. For instance, the guy finished Med School, so you know he’s smart, driven, and committed. All highly-coveted characteristics in the dating pool. 

When dating a doctor, you can expect additional quarantine and/or sanitation policies and procedures. I wouldn’t advise an anti-masker or anti-vaxxer to date a doctor. Remember the Pandemic is not forever, but there may be times throughout his career that will require additional medical precautions.

His patients come first. There will be many times that you will have to take a bit of a backseat to his work. Put your ego aside and try to put yourself in the patient’s shoes. Are your dinner reservations really that important in the grand scheme of life and death?

Dating a doctor requires you to exercise patience and flexibility. There will be late nights, long hours, and weekends on-call. So, learn to love your alone time. He will have to cancel plans sometimes. That doesn’t necessarily mean he’s ghosting you.

Avoid making concrete plans that cannot be altered like tickets to an event or travel arrangements without consulting him first. If something on his schedule prevents him from going, you’re left holding the tickets.

Doctors have often experienced emotional trauma at work. Studies show many health care workers experience similar Post-Traumatic Stress symptoms as combat veterans. It’s important that you can be a safe place for your partner to land after a taxing shift. If he needs to unload, just listen.

Give him a shoulder rub, open his favorite bottle of wine, find a light-hearted show you both love that will help him unwind. Doctors spend all their time giving of themselves to their patients. It’s good for them to have a partner who fills their love tank at the end of a long day

Once again, we would like to express our gratitude and condolences to all of the men and women fighting the Coronavirus, and we urge everyone who reads this to do your part to slow the spread of the virus.

Stay home, stay safe, and date a doctor.


Feeling Lonely

Are You Feeling Lonely or Are You Just Alone?

One can be standing in an arena full of people and still be feeling lonely. The two concepts are not mutually exclusive. On the other hand, you’re capable of feeling completely fulfilled even when you’re all by yourself

Today, I want to focus on providing strategies that will help you achieve the latter. 

According to Psychology Today, long-term feelings of loneliness can have the same physical impact on the body as smoking or obesity. Extended social isolation can even lead to PTSD, anxiety, and addiction.

It's Okay if You're Feeling Lonely

As we move through the Holiday Season, I want you to be mindful of your emotional state. Studies show people are more likely to suffer from depression during this time of year. And recently single people are particularly vulnerable to feeling lonely and hopeless.

When you’re used to being one-half of a whole, it can be difficult to learn how to be your own person.

You’re used to having a partner and having help. You used to negotiate chores and manage a household, but now you’re stuck doing everything by yourself.

It’s okay to feel frustrated and inadequate for those few moments, as long as you know that’s not actually true. You have to love yourself first and foremost. 

When you have a moment of weakness, allow yourself to exist in that moment. We often run from uncomfortable feelings, but I encourage you to sit with them for a beat and examine the root. These moments are a natural part of the healing process and necessary for learning how to be by yourself. 

Focus on Being Alone

If you don’t have children in the home, your newfound silence can feel deafening. An empty house can be the loneliest place on earth if you’re not careful.

It’s important that you learn to find security in the silence. Sit with it. Explore it. Whether you call it meditation, prayer, or quiet time, science has proven that dedicating time to silently focusing inward has phenomenal health benefits for the brain and body.

Use this quiet time to learn how to be happy alone. Learn how to be comfortable in your own presence. Fall in love with yourself. Engage in self-care. Finish all those projects you’ve been putting off. Do something that’s good for your soul, like volunteering or donating to a good cause. Try a new hobby. Reach out to an old friend. Start a new healthy habit.

Instead of dwelling on what’s missing in your life, fill your time with positive things.

Getting Back Out There

Whether you’re fresh off a tough break up or you’re dealing with the death of a spouse, or the heartbreak of divorce, putting yourself back out there is scary. 

It can feel like a lonely process full of uncertainty and self-doubt, but you’re not alone. Our team is dedicated to helping you navigate this journey as comfortably as possible. In addition to our proven matchmaking skills, we can provide one-on-one coaching, expectation management, and professional advice.

Reflect on your previous relationships and dating habits. What will you do differently next time? Consider what, if anything, led to the destruction of your relationship? How can you keep that from happening again?

What is it about dating that keeps you up at night? Have these hard conversations with your Matchmaker.

If it has been more than 10 years since you’ve been single, be prepared for some changes to the dating scene. Online dating and dating apps have really affected the culture and attitudes of a lot of daters. Disappearing acts like Ghosting are unfortunately a common occurrence in the digital dating space.

However, people are less likely to engage in poor dating behavior if there is a Matchmaker or other third party involved.


Love Languages in the time of COVID

Love Languages in the Time of COVID

Are you familiar with the Five Love Languages? Today, we're going to take a look at all Five Love Languages in the time of COVID, and how to express each of them in a safe and healthy way.

Gary Chapman developed the theory over 25 years ago. The Five Love Languages states that everyone has a preference on how they like to give and receive love.

The Five Love Languages are: Words of Affirmation, Gifts, Acts of Service, Quality Time, and Physical Touch.

Throughout 2020, we have had to adapt and learn new ways to exist in a world where our interactions with other people are more limited and restricted than any other period in modern history. 

For single people, this has been particularly challenging. Humans are social animals. Isolation is unnatural and uncomfortable. Lucky for us, we have technology which provides safer alternatives to in-person physical contact. It’s not a perfect system, especially if you’re looking for love.

Words of Affirmation

Let’s start with an easy one, shall we?

It only takes a few seconds of your time to make someone else’s entire day. Compliment the people you care about. Send them a quick text that you’re thinking of them. When they say or do something that makes you happy, tell them so. 

The good news is that a global pandemic doesn’t hinder our ability to speak this love language. Whether it’s a Zoom call or a carrier pigeon, it’s important that you make an effort to express your feelings, especially if Words of Affirmation is one of your partner’s primary Love Languages. 

Gifts

Luckily, we live in an age where you can have pretty much any good or service delivered to your door quickly and safely. We have options, it’s not just orchids or roses anymore, fellas. So, this is another Love Language that hasn’t been hit too terribly hard by COVID-19.

Gifts need not be expensive or extravagant. Of course, they can be, but the point is to fill your partner’s love tank, not shower her with diamonds. In a world where restaurants and bars are closed, use small tokens and gifts to fill the void caused by the Coronavirus. 

Acts of Service

This is where things start to get a little more difficult. Social distancing makes doing the small everyday acts of kindness tougher. This is the best Love Language for creativity and thinking outside the box.

Try to anticipate and alleviate your partner’s pain points to the best of your ability. What is causing her stress at this moment in her life? Is there anything you can do to lessen or eliminate that burden?

Quality Time

I’ve seen a trend online where couples are complaining about having too much Quality Time while they’re on lockdown together. 

So, what I want to do is look at the opposite. Single adults who live alone are experiencing the worst of this, in my very humble opinion. 

If you don’t have children who live at home, there’s a good chance you’ve spent a significant portion of the last 9 months in complete isolation. I know I have.

How can you spend Quality Time with someone when you’re not allowed to be around them?

Find new ways to do and experience things together. Even if you can’t be in one another’s space, there are safe, socially distant, outdoor activities you can do together.

A lot of places like museums and zoos have added features to their websites where you can do virtual tours and watch live feeds. It’s not the same as being there in-person holding hands, but it’s the next best thing.

Keep in mind, the objective is Quality Time, not necessarily quantity. Your goal is to show her spending time with her and learning more about her is important to you even though it’s not easy to do right now. Women want to see you put in an effort especially when there are barriers to overcome. 

FaceTime is your friend. I know the last thing you want to do between back-to-back Zoom meetings is more video calls, but being able to see one another right now is so important. Calls and texts only go so far.

Physical Touch

To all of my Physical Touch people, I know your pain and I wish I could give you all a hug!

My poor dog practically runs and hides when he hears me say the word cuddle these days. We are struggling, but we are surviving!

“Make sure you are taking time to connect physically with your loved ones. Give a shoulder rub. Cozy up as you read a book. Just be mindful to break from the digital routine for some good, old fashioned connection via Physical Touch.”

- Gary Chapman, on Love Languages in the time of COVID

The nation’s top epidemiologists recommend wearing a mask when interacting with anyone outside of your household, this includes during intercourse. So kissing is on hold.

Get creative. One woman built a Hug Glove out of clear plastic with sleeves.

We need to touch and we need to be touched. Depriving oneself of human contact can lead to a decline in both physical and mental health.

It’s important that you really take the time to weigh the pros and cons and do a risk assessment before partaking in physical intimacy with another person during this time.

I encourage you to lean on Words of Affirmation, Gifts, and Acts of Service during this time. If you’re unable to see one another in person safely, make sure you’re filling each other’s love tanks in other ways, lest the spark die out. 

What are your Love Languages in the time of COVID? You can take the quiz here to find out.


frustrated man

Professional Matchmaking: How to Never Get Ghosted Again

If you have spent any amount of time in the dating scene over the past few years, chances are you have heard of the ghosting phenomenon. Hopefully, you aren’t guilty of ghosting anyone, and likewise have not been the victim of a ghost. At Executive Matchmakers, our priority is helping you find genuine, lasting love, so you never get ghosted again.

Did you know that over half of today’s daters have first-hand experience with ghosting?

What exactly does it mean to get ghosted?

Ghosting is the sudden, unexpected cease of all communication from one party within a relationship. Although the term is new, it wasn’t born through dating apps, and it isn’t a new concept.

I assume you have heard the cliché of a father who went out for cigarettes and never came back—that guy ghosted his whole family. It’s not specific to romantic relationships either, we all know a guy who ditches his friends whenever he gets a girlfriend.

The most common form of ghosting can be explained by the following scenario:

You matched with a woman online and shared a number of pleasant chats. You ask for her number and eventually to meet in person. After a few dates and weeks of FaceTiming, she suddenly stops responding to your texts. She dodges your calls, and bails on your weekend plans. You assume she’s caught up in work and give it a week or so before you start to worry. Eventually, you ask her what went wrong, but you get no answer. You’re then left wondering if you did something wrong, she met someone else, or even if she died. 

This is an emotionally painful situation to find yourself in. You may have been the perfect gentleman and said all the right things, but she just didn’t see a future with you for one reason or another. Unfortunately, she was unable to communicate that to you—so she ghosted.

It’s really important to remember if someone ghosts you, that behavior says more about them than you. It’s about their discomfort.” -Dr. Jennice Vilhauer

Why do I keep getting ghosted?

I’m a firm believer that most negative behavior stems from a basis of fear. When humans are afraid, they respond with either fight, flight, or freeze. Ghosting is a combination of the latter two. The ghost freezes communication because she’s afraid of the outcome if the relationship continues, and she flees from the situation in order to avoid difficult conversations or unwanted outcomes.

Fear isn’t the only reason women ghost though. Maybe she’s busy with her career or her family. She could be going through a rough time, either mentally or physically. I think we can all agree, COVID-19 has thrown everyone into a bit of a crisis. Maybe she met someone unexpectedly or an ex came back into her life. And there’s the hardest pill of all to swallow: she’s just not that into you.

But what is she afraid of?

Perhaps it’s a fear of rejection. A sort of get them before they get me first approach. People with this method of dating are not in the right mindset for a long-lasting, committed relationship anyway. Someone who has a pattern of leaving before they get left, will never stay long enough to work through the hard stuff that life tends to throw at us.

One of the most common fears that cause women to ghost is the fear of retaliation. We have been socialized and trained to play nice and never offend a man’s ego. Because of that, some women were simply never taught a polite but effective way to turn down a man’s advances.

How many comedies play off of a woman’s inability to kindly reject a man who buys her a drink at a bar, when she’s clearly not interested in him? There is more truth in that than most of us would like to admit.

Unfortunately, there is a darker side to this fear of retaliation. And that is the very real threat of violence and abuse women have historically experienced at the hands of men with bruised pride.

If the woman who ghosted you has been a victim of or a witness to abuse in her lifetime, try not to take it personally. She probably has a level of fear that revolves around her interactions with men, and ghosting feels like a safer alternative.

Is she too busy or just lazy?

Honestly, does it matter? Whether she’s hustling in her career working 80-hour weeks, or has been on her couch in the same pair of sweatpants all weekend—the fact is she hasn’t made time for you in her life. She may be actively ignoring you, AKA ghosting, or she may just have a mile-long priority list that doesn’t include you.

Will one scenario sting less than the other? I doubt it. It hurts when someone you were developing feelings for doesn’t reciprocate, no matter what the circumstances are.

That being said, I’m a proponent of second chances. If she reaches out with an apology and a valid explanation for being absent, why not give it one more date? That is if you still see potential in the relationship, of course.

How do I never get ghosted again?

Well, there are no guarantees in life, but matchmaking is a smarter, safer way to meet people.

The use of dating apps has created a lot of lazy daters. We pick up our phones and sometimes getting a date is as easy as ordering a pizza. If we don’t catch the other person’s attention within a few messages, they get bored and move on to the next app. We have thousands of possible matches in our pocket. We may give it a few dates, and if that person doesn’t blow our mind, we start swiping again.

It’s all pretty indicative of where we are as a society in terms of instant gratification.

But there is good news! There are alternatives to the monotony of endless swiping, texting, and eventual ghosting. There are better, safer, more efficient ways to date in 2020. At Executive Matchmakers, we have years of experience matching like-minded singles who go on to happy, healthy, long-lasting relationships.

The main reason that ghosting is so prevalent in recent years, is because we’re meeting complete strangers at an unprecedented rate. Previous generations met their mates through mutual friends, family members, church, work, and school. They typically had at least one other person in common with their date. 

Take the following situation for example:

Let’s say your Aunt set you up with a young woman from her church. If you were rude on your first date, or you completely disappeared on the woman, it’s likely that she will complain to your Aunt about your behavior. Your Aunt would then hold you accountable and you would face consequences. 

When you date strangers from the internet with no mutual connections, there is little to no accountability, and people feel free to behave in ways they probably wouldn’t if their Aunt was privy to the situation.

People are less likely to ghost if there is an additional person they have to answer to...like a matchmaker.

Your personal matchmaker will not only work to match you with your ideal partner, but she will also follow up with you and your matches to provide her expert coaching and advice. Our priority is helping you find genuine, lasting love so you never get ghosted again.


Oversharing

Oversharing - Too Much, Too Fast

Beware! The fine line between being authentic and oversharing

Andrew and Melissa's second date seemed to be going great. They were dining on the patio at one of Andrew's favorite local wineries. The sunset was spectacular and Andrew's anxiety about bringing a date to one of his favorite places was almost gone. Melissa seemed to get his dry humor and he appreciated her quick wit and warmth. She had even leaned into him when they were waiting to be seated and then held his hand when they walked to their table overlooking the vineyards below.

While they were sipping a spectacular Russian River Valley Pinot Noir, Melissa casually asked Andrew about his previous dating experience. Without thinking, Andrew launched into the FULL story of his last long-term relationship. Including all the details about their custody dispute over the puppy he had gotten his girlfriend for her birthday, and their disastrous last vacation. Andrew told her how they met, about their moving in together, all the things that went wrong afterward, and their messy breakup. When Andrew finally stopped talking, he noticed that Melissa was no longer smiling. After finishing dinner, Melissa got a Lyft home.

Read more