The online dating experience
I ventured into the online dating world at the age of 47. Can you believe that I had never dated before this? I just got married after a long distance relationship…literally no dates. So it was completely eye-opening to meet men from online dating.
It’s a whirlwind let me tell you. It’s a huge investment of time and energy, and if you have a career and children you have to strike a balance. It would be so easy to get swept up in the dating world, and never set boundaries to take time for yourself and your family.
The upsides and downsides to online dating. In my experience, it’s a huge ego boost. I had come out of my marriage that at times had been abusive and knowing that I had been in a unhealthy relationship for so long, I had no idea what to expect. The upside of dating is that it is an ego boost. Here you have literally hundreds of men saying the most amazingly flattering things about you. You start to think, (as we all should) “Hey, maybe I still have it”. Yes, you do still have it, and you deserve every one of those compliments. Absorb them, and believe that absolutely you are the best thing next to sliced bread. If you don’t believe in yourself, no man is going to. Boost your self-esteem with those positive affirmations you are receiving daily.
Know that it is time-consuming
Let’s face it, just getting ready for all those dates is a time sap. That’s loads of time a week devoted to getting ready. I suggest finding a comfortable balance of how many times you want to go out each week and stick to it. Yes, you will need to be discerning. Don’t go out with a man to be polite Go out because you saw his picture and thought there was an initial attraction there. Go out because you felt an interesting connection in your messaging. You are of value, know this and believe it and be sparing with your time. I believe this is why I have not been on any “dud dates”. I make sure that I only share my time with men that have a running chance.
Should you talk on the phone beforehand?
In the beginning, I insisted on this. I believe I thought it would create a safer experience. I then discovered that it really makes no difference and in fact, some of my best dates were with men I had scarcely messaged and not spoken to. Do what feels right to you. Which leads me to…
Don’t text or talk too much
You can get into a “texting” or “talking” relationship way too easily. Make sure this is balanced. Only give what you get. He really doesn’t need to know what you had for lunch, or that you got your hair done that day. It’s easy to get too familiar and start projecting an image of him, that when you meet he falls far short of. I’d say, text by all means, but until you meet play it cool.
Bubble wrap your life
I have a strict rule, that no man has ever known where I live. I have children, and the last thing I need is a stalker on my doorstep. I keep my private life separate. I don’t meet men in my area, I would far rather jump into my car and drive closer to them. It’s about safety and setting boundaries. When I am in a committed relationship, I would be happy to welcome him into my home. At that point, I will reveal a lot more about myself. I think one’s home is a reflection of yourself, and I am proud of my homes. You have to earn that right to get to see another layer of me, and so far no man has proven the test of time. One day when a quality man appears it will happen,
Enjoy the experience
If you are not in the right mindset for online dating and you are not enjoying it, stop. It’s not for everyone. Personally, I see it as a tool to meet new and interesting people. I met one person online who has turned out to be a great friend and sounding board. No romantic interest there for me at least, but I enjoy going for walks with him. I think that a fabulous bonus. I am not desperate to find my match. God will send the right person at the right time. So I just live abundantly, I am learning so much about myself, what my needs and desires are after so many years of just being focused on my family. I am fascinated by the process. Why is it that men can be attracted to me, but I don’t feel it for them? Why is it the man I dated for over three months and I fell head over heels in love with didn’t feel the same way about me? Online dating can really help you evolve into a deeper thinker, helps you become more intuitive and curious about all matters of the heart.
Go out, and see what there is in the world. Your perfect match is out there and with patience and using the ease and flow of life he will make his way into your life. Don’t get consumed with online dating. In other words, don’t give up your ballroom classes just to go out on a date. Make it a balanced part of your life. Use it as a tool for self-growth and for broadening your horizons.