I'm a generally confident and secure person. I'd like to think many of my friends would say I'm positive and all-around good person. And when it comes to the relationships in my life, whether it be romantic or just friendly, I'm dedicated and will always be there to lend a hand.
Recently, I have found myself in a life-changing relationship, and I've come to the conclusion she is "the one." Every relationship before her, I realize now, would have been me just settling, just doing what I think society wanted me to do.
I've talked to friends who were once married or are in a relationship with someone who was once married, and I've learned that dating or committing to someone who was once married or engaged can cause some problems. It's usually not the other person who was once married or engaged that has a problem, though. It's YOU who has suddenly become insecure and jealous.
I never understood why it would be such an issue, as the US has a running joke that half the marriages inevitably end in divorce. However, a New York Times piece has recently debunked this myth and pointed out the decrease in divorce rates.
It seems that when it comes to dating, loving and wanting to be with someone who was once either married or engaged, it's a whole different ball game. Now I'm like my friends who used to share their fears and insecurities, and now I am feeling those same fears and insecurities in my present relationship with "my one."
Although, deep down, I know her past relationship is over and I have nothing to fear, there is that ounce of insecurity knowing these are waters that have been sailed before. Is it pride? Ego? The desire to know you were the first and last one to ask for their hand?
Knowing your significant other was once married or engaged means they don't fear commitment or longevity. They've gone through the whole engagement and/or marriage thing already, so they're going to be certain that the next time they're sporting that ring, it's for life. They know what they want and what they don't want.
But how long were they engaged? Married? Was it in the heat of the moment that involved a trip to Vegas and the Little White Chapel?
As the one dating someone who was once engaged or married, you may doubt yourself and wonder why it didn't work for them. Will it work for you two? Or, will you end up just like their past?
Dating someone and entering their social circle comprised of people who have seen and interacted with their ex can be both nerve-wracking and excruciating. You might find yourself being judged a bit harshly, or even questioned for motives.
"Since the last one didn't work, what makes you think this will?" they'll ask.
You may feel you don't live up to their expectations. Can you give your significant other what they want for a entire lifetime?
Being in a relationship that is new, exciting and passionate can be scary. It's even scarier when you know that the person you're with is "the one," but at one point, they were "the one" for someone else.
What you need to keep in mind is they've gone through the heartache and disappointment; they know now what they want. And congratulations, they've chosen you. They want to spend the rest of their life with you.
Don't let the fact they've ventured down that road with someone else throw you off and hurt what you have now.
Just think: You had to go through your own breakups, self-discovery and growth to be where you are now, just as they had to go through their own growth and self-discovery.
All this has led to the moment you two met, the moment that has led to this journey of a lifetime. Don't let something trivial ruin something pure and magical.