Monday, January 18, 2010
Why a Blog...Setting the Stage
About me - I'm in my early 30s, I like my job, have a house, like to travel, have great friends, I'm involved in my community, have a social life and a masters degree. I'm also single with no real future prospects out there. Dating in your thirties is no cake walk. Don't get me wrong -- I believe I can have a very fulfilling life without a spouse, being single has never held me back. But I have this nagging feeling that it would be rewarding and fun to find someone to share my life with. Which brings me to my current life situation and the questions that sent me down this path: Why do I keep dating Mr. Wrong? What am I doing that keeps attracting the wrong men or the men who don't want to commit?
Those questions and some unresloved issues stemming from a rather nasty breakup brought me to my therapist. Here's the insight I received from her:
1. Dating is all about attraction.
We date and want to be with people who we consider attractive. That attraction could be based on personal appearances or the qualities and skills we like or admire in the person. Regardless, our initial draw is purely based on attraction and from there you have to determine if there is enough to make a relationship work. ( I took some comfort in knowing that I wasn't sending out signals to all the Mr. Wrongs out there, dating itself, is purely about attraction. It's what you do next that matters most.)
2. Do not stay in a relationship just to be in one or because you think it's easier than meeting someone new.
You know within 3 months if a relationship is working or has a future. If it isn't or doesn't, move on. Don't waste time on a relationship that isn't going anywhere. Apparently we like to try and make things work - we like to try and fix things. It's like putting a square peg in a round hole. No matter how hard we try, it's never going to be the right fit even if we find a way to squeeze that peg in there.
(This is probably my greatest weakness, I hate to fail, so I want my relationships to work. I've been known to stay in relationships too long even when they weren't going anywhere. I never thought it was because I didn't want to being alone - but because I was sure I could get Mr. Wrong to wake up and realize that I was great and that I was a super catch. And if I just did this, or said that, or took up that interest or lost that weight he would finally realize how amazing I was. I imagined things would be perfect one day...but it really never works out that way.)
3. Dating is work and it takes time, energy and commitment.
Mr. Right is not going to be standing in front of me at Starbucks or in line at the grocery store. Life isn't a fairytale and I won't find a partner just by standing around looking pretty. If you're serious about finding a life-partner, you should consider dating your second job. You have to put yourself out there - online dating, social groups, clubs, activities, church, etc. - you have to participate and join activities where you will meet people. (This was a wake up call for me, I know Prince Charming isn't going to show up at my door on a giant horse, but I had always secretly believed in the random meet or the "it will just happen" scenario. But the truth is, I can't go to work and come home every night and expect to meet someone. If my goal is to find a future partner then I have to be out there actively looking and participating in the process).
And that my readers brings us to today. I'm trying online dating ...and I will share with you these experiences and adventures over the next few weeks. I had my first dinner date with Mr. W tonight and it was interesting. But you'll have to wait until the next blog to learn more, because it's late and I have laundry to do.