“The scary thing about dating is that you are either going to marry that person or break up.”
I stumbled across this heart-warming little sentiment earlier this year, and it put fear into my heart for two reasons.
Firstly, I’m not sure I’m ready for marriage and, secondly, no one likes being dumped.
If you’re anything like me—a realist rather than an optimist—you’ll agree that in most cases, its going to end with the latter.
But guess what, dating shouldn’t be a stressful experience and no one should be thinking that ‘big’ before a first date.
Instead, here’s a new way to think of it, and I’m borrowing this line from the straight-shooting duo Greg Berhrendt and Amiira Ruotola-Behrendt who wrote He’s Just Not That Into You … it’s just a f***ing date!
Just. A. Date.
“What? What do you mean? This could be my future husband/wife/life partner/baby daddy!” I can practically hear some of you scream as your biological clock ticks louder than the roar of a passing jet.
Yes, they very well could be, but I’m telling you now, if you go into a first, second or even sixth date thinking those thoughts, you are most likely guaranteeing that it will end in your tears.
Very few people—male or female—can deal with that kind of pressure.
Sure it can be fun to daydream and yes, it’s great to know from the outset what you would like from a relationship, but if you spend too much time thinking about the ‘could be, would be, should be’ rather than responding to what is actually going on, you’ll find yourself alone on the couch crying into a tub of Ben & Jerry’s.
And it shouldn’t be like that.
I know too many people—of both sexes—who are so focused on getting married and having a family that the moment someone asks them out they’re pinning wedding ideas on Pinterest, thinking about how they’d furnish their house together and daydreaming about walking their not-yet owned dog down the street while discussing holiday ideas.
It’s a recipe for disaster.
People need to stop thinking about the end game and just think of each date as a chance to get to know someone new and possibly—and I know this is shocking—have a bit of fun.
That being FUN not rum, which can also be popular on dates but with somewhat more disastrous consequences if I’m involved.
But whether you’re back in the game after a long absence or have been dating steadily for years, first dates are usually pretty nerve-wracking.
You’re putting yourself out there and hoping that the other person likes what they see/hear, but even if they call it off that first or second date, it’s not a reflection on you as a person.
It doesn’t mean that you’re not pretty/handsome enough, not tall/thin enough or not smart enough; it just means that they aren’t the one for you.
Or it could mean that you got so drunk that you fell off your chair and couldn’t string together a sentence, much less a meaningful conversation or perhaps you skipped entrée and went straight to sticking your foot into the crotch of your date (both of which happened to male mates of mine).
But don’t beat yourself up about it. Be disappointed, but be realistic—it was just a date.
For all you know they could have weird fetishes, an obsession for Power Rangers or Cabbage Patch Dolls or an over-bearing mother who still believes in attachment parenting their now 35-year-old child.
This post was brought to your by eHarmony Australia. Please support the brands that support this blog.