Pack Up Before Your Remarriage

By: Alyssa Johnson

Preparing to remarry is a busy time. You may be excited about the prospect of a new marriage and the stability that may add to your life. You may also feel nervous about giving the whole marriage thing another shot.

One of the most important things to "pack" when preparing for this move is "your past." Make sure you leave it in the past. Let's take a look at what I mean by that and what it entails.

1. There should no longer be strong emotions when thinking about your ex-spouse for you or or your new partner.

Being really angry at your ex-spouse is normal during and right after a divorce, whether you chose the divorce or not. This strong feeling is there because you've not totally "emotionally divorced" yet. Hate is NOT the opposite of love. It is indifference. When you no longer spend a lot of time thinking about your ex, you know you've moved on and put that chapter of your life in your past. You may have fond memories from that time in your life, but they aren't powerful feelings anymore. The anger and bitterness has subsided.

There's no reason for your new partner to have strong feelings toward your ex-spouse either. Your relationship shouldn't include jealousy. Why? Because you've reassured your partner that you have no strong emotions toward your ex by not being overly focused on your ex anymore. Your new partner will be able to understand there's no reason to be threated after they see this.

2. All post-divorce agreements and child custody arrangements need to be complete.

You've moved beyond all of those battles. You're now able to co-parent effectively with your ex-spouse. You're both familiar with the schedule and are able to compromise with it when necessary. You're both focused on your children and meeting their needs. The anger and arguing that may have happened early on while both of you adjusted to the custody arrangements has subsided.

3. You and your children have transitioned well into single parenting and have created a stable life together.

This is an important indicator that you've put the past in the past. You feel you have a good handle on this single parenting thing. It doesn't feel nearly as overwhelming as it once did. Because of that, you and your children feel like life has become stable again. There aren't the huge swings in mood from any or all of you as there was when all of you were adjusting to the changes. Your life feels normal now, not like some bad dream.

A successful remarriage will be hard to achieve without these aspects. They will get in the way. They will effect your ability to be a good partner. They will effect your partner's ability to trust your relationship. And they will effect your children's ability to make an honest attempt at bonding with their new step parent.

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