- Gender and Relationships
Finding the Love of Your Life
Finding the love of your life.
When I did the Hub About attraction I kept drifting into the dating and single scene so I split the two. This Hub is for all those men/women out there who are single or single parents that are still waiting to find that one person that is suppose to make the world turn for them. I hope this does not scare you into staying home.
What is your dating goal? Why do we date to begin with? Most people date to find a lasting companion. While most people find the idea of new love attractive, an aged to perfection old love is better (speaking from experience). The goal is to find someone to spend your life with, forever. A person who loves you, appreciates you, and wants to be there for you. Years ago my grandmother gave me the best advice, she said "Marry your best friend". At that point in my life I had already married and divorced my worst enemy, so her advice made sense. I can say without reservation that my husband is my best friend. We support each other, care about each other, love each other, and respect each other. The goal should be to find that person for yourself, that best friend.
Be friends with the person first. You can be anyone's friend. Being friend enables you to get to know someone without dating. I was friends with my husband for years before I was romantically involved with him. He would later say that he knew he liked me the day we met. The point is as a friend you can get to know someone without the pressure of trying to impress them. I maintain that if you have to work to impress someone that relationship isn't going anywhere. Pretense is not a basis for a lasting relationship. Be yourself, if it doesn't work out then it wasn't supposed to work out.
How to find the right person?
Do things you would normally do. If you like the library hang out in the library, like to golf, fish or go to the movies, do those things. Relationships need very little common ground to work. If you have hobbies pursue them and meet other people who enjoy them. The more people you know and meet the greater the chance that you will meet the person you will love.
How to find the wrong person:
Bars are for drinking. In general they are not a good place to pick someone up. How do you know the difference? Here is the difference, if you meet someone at a bar who was talked into going by their friends, that is one thing. If you meet someone who knows the bartender by name because they hang out here every weekend, that is not a good sign. Bars harbor a lot of power drinkers and drunks. Men in general do not go to the club to dance, they go to pick up women and drink. If women didn't like to dance then night clubs would never have happened, we would just have bars. Keep that in mind. Where do nice people go? The short answer is: everywhere. Think about it though where do you think nice people are right now? Most of them are working, college, sleeping, and volunteering. Basically nice people are living their lives. You should go live your life too.
How to spot a someone you should avoid:
When I was 19 I went on a date and even though the man was nice and fun I had this feeling that I needed to get away from him. I refused to see him after that date. Later I found out that he had a history of abusing women. Follow your instincts about people. I could have easily reasoned that this man was nice and become his next victim. Above everything else if you get that feeling something is not right, act on it.
There are signs that a person is mentally unstable. These signs can be spotted early on and save a person from a lifetime of heartache. Most (85%) of the mentally ill people in this world are not in mental health facilities. What that means to the average person is; the chances are good that you will run across one of these people while dating. I have found that you can love one side of a person without really knowing the whole person until its too late. The problem with this is that you can have children with that person, and then you have a child who is not balanced. While I believe this happens all the time, the best example I have is my own parents. My father is a bipolar-manic depressive and consequently some of these traits were passed down. Eventually my mother left my father, but how do you leave your child?
Here are some (not all) of the tells:
1. Person who gets attached too quickly
2. Person who is possessive too early on
3. Person who is invasive too soon (wants to know where you are all the time)
4. Person who never stops talking about themselves
5. Person who tries to control you (wants to decide what you wear or eat)
6. Person who calls constantly like they have nothing else to do (just to see where you are)
7. Person who requires ALL of your time (expects you to drop all other plans NOW)
8. Person who makes unreasonable demands on you (money, rides, time)
9. A person who tries to buy you gifts too soon (especially if the gifts are expensive)
10. The person does not let you around other friends or family(who might tell you about the person)
HOW DO I KNOW THIS IS THE PERSON? WHAT A DATE DOES AND DOES NOT TELL YOU.
I am not a fan of dating and I will explain why. Dating creates an environment that promotes a person not being themselves. By that I mean dating is like a job interview, the person you present is seldom the person you are. People will fight me about this but, to them I say “do you always wear 3 inch heels to dinner and only eat half of what is on your plate?” Seriously how can a person be themselves in this situation? If you can throw on your flip flops have street vendor tacos and be yourself, by all means date! If you catch yourself answering questions the way you think the other person would want you to… get out of there.
Lasting relationships are not built on being the “fake” you. Be real, and know that the right person will love you for you. Maybe you have to go through a lot of trial and error to find that person but, at least you won’t wake up at the age of 36 and wonder what the hell you were thinking. A lot of how we know that this is not the person is by knowing what we don’t want. That sounds bad but, when we meet someone and they are not the kind of person we would want to spend time with, it teaches us something. There is not a test that shows for certain if that person will last the rest of your life. It does help if you see yourselves in the same place in 10, 20, or 30 years.
Being a single parent it can be tempting when a relationship is going well to bring your child(ren) around your romantic interest. I would caution any single parent that this is not a good idea. Children get attached easily and relationships go south quickly and without warning. It is better to be absolutely sure that you are going to marry someone before you even consider introductions. It is better than having your child angry with you over yet another failed relationship. Besides, your children do not need to see your dating prospects. Things should move much slower if you are a single parent because you have more than yourself to think of in the family situation.
People will say you have to see if your child gets along with the other person. It is almost a given that change is going to be difficult for any child. (Blended families are another hub). Your child is going to take issue with new siblings and parents. New parents bring new rules and for a child that means instability.
I would also caution women/men to be careful not to get involved with someone who has never had children. My creep flag goes up when men want to date a single mom. Not that all men who would want to date a single mom are all creeps but, you should use extreme caution. Pedophiles look for women/men with children. Don’t be afraid to background check someone.
Keep in mind that most children feel a sense of abandonment when you have a relationship with other people including your new boyfriend/girlfriend, and especially if you take an interest in their children.
SEX BEFORE MARRIAGE (Is the milk free, or not?)
Before I get scientific I am going to tell you why I think premarital sex hurts relationships. The beginning of a marriage is tough. This time in a person’s life is like boot camp for marriage even if it is not a first marriage. Traditional thinking is that people do not have sex until they are married. When you are going through marriage boot camp there are times that sex saves your relationship. Yes, that’s right sex can get you through those tough times if you did not have premarital sex. If you did not have premarital sex then when fights happen… and they will… you can always fall back on the sex as common ground.
However, if you have carried a long term sexual relationship with someone, then you get married, the sex part is not new and it does not carry the same weight as it did when you first got together. People will dispute this, and argue with me but be realistic. When you first have sex, it’s new and exciting, and you don’t care about anything else (at least not in the moment). Over time just like season passes to Disneyland… it does not hold the same wonder (getting that feeling back is another hub). That said we will continue to the scientific stuff!
Thanks to the Kinsey report people live together without commitment, have casual sex, and carry on like they are no better than their pets when it comes to sex. The Busby study found that couples who waited until after marriage to have sex were 22 percent more likely to report that they were happy in their marriage. I believe the reason they were happier is exactly the reason I stated above. There is another reason people who waited may be happier, that is that people with the ability to self control in this area are probably more mature.
Maybe it was in college or in high school that we all became aware of the girls who slept around. While some of the kids in school thought these girls were cool, I perceived that most of them were lost and immature. As these girls got older they either grew up or moved their game to the local bar and became the lyrics of a country song. To this day I feel sad when I hear about these girls still looking to regain a part of themselves they lost through their promiscuous behavior.
Some people will argue that it is personal choice to have casual sex. I will argue back that the great feeling a person has in the moment will not last and eventually will turn to shame. How can anyone have pride in a one night stand (this goes for men as well). Are they getting the milk for free? What they are getting for free is a false sense that someone wants them (even though it’s the type of want that only lasts a half an hour). I have never heard anyone brag about a one night stand five years later. For this reason, I would have to say that the “free love” idea was more of a trap than a relief.
Here is a reality check for you (speaking mostly to the women here); if a man is just looking for someone to have sex with and you have sex with him and he stays, how will you ever know if he stayed for you or just because of the sex? Just something to ponder.
Someone should have the full name, address, and phone number of the person you are meeting (give this info to someone). This sounds overly cautious but, you should always go somewhere public (meet there). When possible double date. Start with lunch when possible. Lunch dates give you a chance to meet in the daylight and get to know the person better before moving to a night date. This also helps avoid the awkward “do you want to come back to my place” conversation.
Carry pepper spray. FACT: Most women who are raped are raped by someone they know. I personally believe all women should carry pepper spray (mace has been outlawed in many states). DO NOT GIVE OUT YOUR ADDRESS ON THE FIRST DATE. Let me tell you that this has saved me several times when I was not willing to continue a relationship. Finally, have a friend that you are suppose to contact by a certain time. It sounds crazy to check in with a friend but, better safe than sorry.
Never trust who a person says they are online. Online I can be Mother Teresa or Megan Fox. Likewise people who are online can be anyone. I have known people that met online and had great relationships; I have also heard the horror stories about stalkers. From my own experience online dating creates an environment where people lose all ideas of decorum. The internet is a playground for the mentally unstable who have no problem making comments that are inappropriate or sending things that are inappropriate. Caution should be used with online meeting.
The best thing you can do is live your life the way you believe and hopefully it will lead to the right person for you!