A woman wrote to a therapist and in her letter, she shared all the problems that came with dating her boyfriend who she got involved with him before she knew he was legally unavailable. He had not told her he was married for three months while they dated. Then, when he finally came clean it took months for him to finally divorce.
He said he was getting a divorce, but what he really should have said was that he was emotionally separated from his wife. The paperwork had never been filed, and now the young woman wonders if she can ever really trust him? Many would say, maybe. Others, maybe never at all.
Dating as a single person is complicated. Dating a married person while you are single may seem okay to do, especially if a legal separation has been filed, but it’s not cut and dry. Marriage has religious meaning, but at the end of the day, it’s a legally relationship between two people. Each state defines the institution of marriage and the process of divorce differently. Where one state may not see dating during separation as a big deal (Florida), others may consider dating and sexual intimacy with someone other than your legal spouse as a crime.
Dating a married person may not affect you, since you’re not the person who entered into the legal agreement but it can cause a lot of stress for the person you are interested in getting involved with. Dating a married person who is separated can affect the division of marital property, and in (rare) cases, land someone in jail.
Also, when dating someone who is going through a divorce, especially if they have children, you might get in the way of that person processing their feelings. At the end of the day, it may seem painful to wait, but it might be smarter for the single to build a friendship with the future divorcee.