The important thing to remember when marrying someone who is divorced is to acknowledge these possibilities, talk about them openly, and then work things out together.
So, if you find yourself worriedly looking up for “my boyfriend has been married before, what should I do?” or “is it good to marry a divorcee?” read on to gain insights into getting married to a divorcee – both upsides and the downsides.
Dealing with the ex
Your fiancé’s first marriage may have ended, but many ex-spouses still have a “relationship” in some form after the divorce is final.
If there are children, and especially if they share custody, there will be constant contact in person and via phone to work out the details.
This means that you will also be dealing with this ex as well.
Even if you don’t come into the picture until years later, there may still be hard feelings and some power struggles between your new spouse and their ex and maybe even you, as the ex may feel like they have been replaced or you are encroaching on their children’s lives.
Comparing with former spouses
Your spouse-to-be was married before—so does that mean they will always compare you to their former spouse? It’s worth talking about openly. Obviously, you are a different person than their first spouse, but it will be hard for them to not compare someone they spent their life with.
If you’re doing a household chore, on vacation together, or worse—being intimate—will your spouse ever slip and say, “Well, my first spouse did things this way…”
No one comes out of an ended marriage unscathed, no matter how mutual the break up was or how nice the two ex-spouses have been to each other.
The fact is that something that once held a lot of hope and promise is now over.
Both spouses will be mourning in their own way. And even though you and your new flame are definitely in love, there could be things that pop up along the way that show they are still dealing with issues over the divorce.
In your second marriage, be open as you discuss what issues still bother them about what happened and how it affects their daily life now.
When you grow up, your vision of your wedding day and honeymoon may be one way—but if you marry someone who has been married before, and especially if there are children, that could all be very different.
There will likely be less pomp and circumstance surrounding the wedding, including less attention, fewer guests, fewer gifts, less excitement, and maybe even a very short honeymoon if any at all.
When marrying someone who has been married before will still be very special to both of you, but just be ready for it to be different than you have been expecting all these years.
In a second marriage after divorce, the more you can talk about it with your future spouse in the second marriage, the better.
Marrying a man with a child or a mother of a kid
When marrying a divorced man or woman, remember that their children always, always have to come first, even before you.
They are flesh and blood, and those children need their parents. Marrying a divorcee with a child is a unique situation, although not an uncommon situation.
So whether your spouse will have full or part or no custody, there will be times that they will be called on to take care of something child-related.
You need to be okay with that cutting into their time with you. Also, when marrying a divorcee, those children may not be very accepting of you at first, and even at all. What will you do if they don’t trust you or treat you a bit harshly?
Will it affect your marriage relationship? These potential issues are worth discussing with your future spouse in the second marriage.
Beliefs about marriage and divorce
When you marry someone who is divorced, it’s important to consider the problems in marrying a divorcee, and what their views of marriage and divorce are now.
These questions can help you answer if you would marry a divorcee.
Also, if they are taking the plunge to get married again, then they obviously value a second marriage in some way. Just make sure you know what it really means to them.
Getting into couples therapy
While you aren’t one of the divorced parties, you will be married to one. That means loving and living with all of that person, including their past. And chances are, that past will affect your significant other’s present and future.
How do you fit in when marrying a divorced woman or man?
How will their past affect your relationship?
Should you marry a divorcee? The answer lies in an affirmative if you have understood and embraced the complexities the situation is ridden with. Whether it is a starter marriage fallen apart or long-standing marriage dissolution, everyone should grab a second chance at happiness.
However, tread with caution when marrying someone who has been divorced. Don’t wait until issues arise. Post second marriage, get into couples therapy now so you can transition together from day one.
In this environment, you may also be able to talk more openly and bring up many issues that are hard to discuss in the midst of your new busy lives.
If you feel disconnected or frustrated about the state of your marriage but want to avoid separation and/or divorce, the marriage.com course meant for married couples is an excellent resource to help you overcome the most challenging aspects of being married.
Rachael Pace is a noted relationship writer associated with Marriage.com. She provides inspiration, support, and empowerment in the form of motivational articles and essays. Rachael enjoys studying the evolution of loving partnerships and is passionate about writing on them. She believes that everyone should make room for love in their lives and encourages couples to work on overcoming their challenges together.