Cheryl Burke ‘chooses not to date’ amid divorce

Cheryl Burke ‘chooses not to date’ amid divorce

impudent is a Yahoo Life series where people get the chance to share how they live their best lives – out loud and in color, without fear or regret – looking back at the past with a smile and embracing the future with excited anticipation.

Cheryl Burke enters a new phase of life. The Dancing with the stars pro, 38, recently separated from husband Matthew Lawrence. Now she’s learning how to feel comfortable in her own company after “mourning” the end of her marriage. For now, she chooses not to date, she says.

“It’s just me and my Frenchie,” she told Yahoo Life. “I’ve been sober for four years now and that includes self-reflection. I’m like a sponge and I’m just learning to love myself and really to be alone instead of lonely. I think it’s really important for me to build that relationship with myself so that I don’t go through that same pattern of men and relationships.”

When it’s time for the dance moms alum so far, she says she shuns the dating apps in favor of a more old-fashioned approach to meeting someone.

“I’m all for matchmakers,” she says. “I know that statistics show that they have a high percentage. It’s not just about swiping left to see who looks good and what profession they’re in – it goes deeper than that.”

However, the relationship she is most focused on right now is with herself. Burke, who previously opened up about her past sexual abuse, has a self-care routine that includes meditation and therapy. An important thing she learned through both practices was the idea that “we are not our thoughts,” but rather “observers” of our thoughts.

“It doesn’t try to define yourself by outside sources,” she notes. “So your job, your friends, your family, your name … it’s developing this foundation in yourself and knowing your self-esteem without all that.”

That includes shutting down people-friendly tendencies she has relied on in the past.

“I used to put everyone before me and my needs, and I realize I’m doing myself a disservice,” she explains. “I think it’s really important to just breathe and be kind to yourself because this isn’t easy.”

Burke, who struggles with body dysmorphism, says what she sees in the mirror “isn’t necessarily what everyone else sees.” As she tries to change the “vocabulary” around her self-criticism, her body is something she often thinks about.

“I think it’s very hard for women to accept who they are today,” she muses. “Especially if you have a business like me in the entertainment industry… comparing is the devil.”

“I hope one day my body dysmorphism will go away,” she adds. “But I also have to…give it grace, and the same with age. It’s like, you have to accept it for what it is and just know you’re working to get better… And I guess how the more you own it internally, the more you will see it externally.

When it comes to feeling sexy, Burke says, “What makes me feel sexy every day is loving myself, really giving back to me, and putting me first.”

She also recently spoke out about the fact that she’s never had an orgasm through intercourse — a story, she says, that has been “misinterpreted” a bit by the press.

“I’ve had an orgasm through sexual acts before,” she clarified. “But when it comes to being molested when I was a little girl, [there are] sexual acts that I don’t want to be performed on me as it is a trigger when it comes to my mental health. I know a few women who have been through something similar and who also feel the same, or you just disconnect and sex just becomes the act, and there’s nothing meaningful about it.”

Now Burke says she’s “most impudent” about sharing her “life story” — even if some people complain that she’s “sharing too much.”

The reason, she says, is because of the “amount of feedback and emails and comments I get from people saying, ‘Thank you. I know I’m not alone.’”

“That to me…means the world,” she shares. “It takes away any embarrassment, even if I’m just saying it, because hopefully I’m leading by example.”

—Video produced by Olivia Schneider.

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