Dating Behavioral Disorder

This concept comes from the Book: Cinderella Was A Liar- by Brenda Della Casa. She lists certain unwise behaviors and I have added many of my own.

Too much too soon – This concept has to do with both the emotional and physical. Emotionally, it is not wise to bring out all your issues, past relationship disappointments and baggage, complaints about the opposite sex, or neediness about wanting to be in a relationship. It is also not wise to be too forward letting the person know immediately how attracted you are to them or excited about having met them. It is also not wise to jump into the dating space at a rate faster than the person you are with, as this could scare them off. Discussions about how happy and competent you are alone can certainly give the wrong message as does the opposite, that you do not feel whole, healthy, and happy by yourself. It is important to find an inter-dependent balance whereby you present yourself as fulfilled alone but would love the addition of partner in your life.

Avoid General Blanket Statements – I will never get married again, or men/women can’t be trusted and then list all your past hurt and betrayals. Talking about personal issues will make the other person feel like a therapist. Be personable but not too personal.Do not ask personal questions at first. It is best if the other becomes comfortable enough to share them on their own. Keep the dating space comfortable and safe for the other person to slowly reveal who they are to you.

Keep the conversation light and pleasant- Ask general questions about mutual interests. If an interest is brought up that is important for the other, don’t say that it does not interest you , Be open-minded. In a good relationship, each person does not have to do everything with the other, just the things that are important and enjoyable to you both. Try to comment on anything you have in common and build on that.

Accept what you hear and do not try to airbrush reality. Listen carefully to what is being said and take it seriously.
Do not begin thinking you can change the other person. We have enough difficulty changing ourselves let alone taking on the colossal project of changing another person. I like the concept of intelligent love. That means that we were created with our heads over our hearts. Both your head and heart have to agree that this person is worth more dates. Do not ignore red flags and different goals. If you want to get married and the other person does not, believe them and move on. Otherwise, you are wasting your time.

Do not engage in any desparate behaviors – Do not ask inappropriate questions that put the other person on the spot. Men are the pursuers and they often need a little time to process the date and decide what they feel. Women are more immediate and like immediate feedback. Do not be tempted to say or do anything you may regret that could push him away. Men live in the present moment and women live more in the future. All he knows is he had a nice time and that’s it. He may have more dates set up where he will have a better time. That does not mean he did not enjoy his time with you but it depends on the degree. You will have to be patient and have many dates set up, too. You shouldn’t play hard to get. You should be hard to get because you are discerning, self-respecting, and have a full and interesting life. These are the qualities that are most attractive to the other.

Physically- Do dress appropriately and modestly. This is not the time for your Hollywood red carpet night. Nice casual,
Lighter make-up, modest jewelry, not a severe hair style. Look like you take care of yourself and you have put some effort into dressing for the date. That first meeting may be your only opportunity to make an impression. Do not wear anything too suggestive as that may give your date the impression that you are leading with your sexuality as opposed to the many fine and unique qualities that you have to offer.

Have appropriate boundaries- If there is physicality too soon, it can cloud your vision and create an uncomfortable embarrassment when people do things physically that are not congruent with the emotional development of a relationship. Sex is not a short-cut. Many people think so that they can avoid all the uncomfortable feelings of anxiety, uncertainty, fear of rejection, vulnerability, that the normal progression entails. There is no jumping over, only going through, the process. Ask any man- if a woman sleeps with him too soon, she has just resigned from the category of possible wife material and more in the category of fun, party girl, or a friend with benefits.

Open-Mindedness- None of us are getting better looking as we age, including you. So even if you have a neutral reaction upon meeting, and not negative, give the person a chance. We have all had experiences whereby a person’s appearance changes as we get to know them, both for the better and the worse. Beauty is in the eyes of the holder. Someone’s intelligence, kindness, and charm can literally transform our initial impressions.

Last, if you are uncomfortable on the date, feel like you can’t be your authentic self, if feel you have nothing in common especially your values and dating goals, there are red flags,or any rudeness towards you or others, it is clearly time to move on. Keep the faith that for every date that doesn’t progress well, you are one date closer to finding your soul mate. It is a numbers game, and you have to keep going out until you find the one that is just right for you . The next date may be your lucky number.

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