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You can leave a comment below or e-mail us a reflection for a guest blog post.

Did you ever try to teach your children how to swim?

And you both usually begin to resent the Church, scoff at her rules, and make excuses for your life style. If you haven’t thoroughly (and I mean thoroughly) examined why your marriage failed, what part you played in it—even back in the beginning—and taken the time to make great efforts to grow and mature through your divorce, you risk bringing all those disordered dynamics into another relationship. Don't use others--even "benevolently." If you are anywhere from simply antsy to deeply desperate to rebuild a family, replace a parent for your children, or otherwise avoid the discomfort of being single, you are probably reducing the new person to an object—like a patch over a hole, a plug in a socket, or a pill to take to feel better. Relationship red flags are meant to protect you and when you ignore, rationalize, or minimize them, you almost invite another divorce upon yourself and your children—and the new person and his/her family.

(The annulment process helps you process these things, by the way.) Is that fair to the other person ... Healthy relationships only spring from two people who are free to remain single and still be content, but who choose each other out of authentic love, not loneliness. The 50% average national divorce rate is increased greatly for second marriages, at 65-75%.

This is a good image of two dynamics that often happen after divorce: some don’t have enough sense and want to jump right back in, and others want to get out of the pool altogether—too afraid to ever go in again.

For some divorced people who have barely made it to the side and are clinging to the steps, they do NOT want a new relationship. No way are they ready to leave the safety of the steps in a world of relationships where emotionally you can’t touch bottom and can’t catch your breath.

When you rush back in the pool with floaties you’ll never be able to really “swim”—and when the waters get too rough, you risk drowning again. Even if YOU are "fine" with it, you never really know what is in the heart of the other. Many are guarded and taking their time, and rightly so, but many can prefer the safe and endless “dating” to a move toward marriage.

The following articles deal with the messy reality of love, sex, dating, and marriage. Sex, lies, and hook-up culture Don't believe all your friends tell you about sleeping around. Take advantage of what the church offers engaged couples, even if your path to the altar doesn't follow the ideal. You might want to listen to the church's time-tested teachings. Check out our marriage section for more articles on maintaining a happy, loving relationship.

There's something for everybody here, whether you are... College kids tell Donna Freitas that they don't actually like hook-up culture. Heather Grennan Gary reports on what young couples make of marriage-for better or worse. They have helped some couples survive the rough patches. FORUM: As Catholics, we know that there’s a lot more to love than romance.

better, you see that it’s probably a good idea that she stay in the shallow end and get rid of the floaties.

To get back in the deep and survive, she’ll need to develop some stronger swimming skills.

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