New love is a drug, that might be more powerful than heroin. If we're addicted and activated we're at risk of slipping back into unhealthy patterns of addiction, intoxication, regret, withdrawal, and repeat.
Dating is like a gateway drug. You’ve got to “date” in order to find a partner. If you are not clear on what you want in a relationship, dating is going to bring you a lot of people who are not ready, not available, and not very evolved. The goal of dating is to find someone to love.
For some, online dating is the gateway to finding someone who is outside of our normal spheres of influence. The first step is introductions. Then a few dates to see if you’re still compatible. And at some point, you’re going to declare each other as boyfriend and girlfriend. At that point, you are officially dating. Everything up to that is courtship and “hello dates.”
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I’ve had success with online dating. I also see much of the online activity as a waste of time. If you’re not going out on “hello dates” you’re really just playing at the idea of dating. Find me somebody to love. Let’s get to a first date and see where things go. We can’t get to relationships unless we are testing and trying things while dating.
We want to keep improving with each dating experience. It takes time. There will be hits and misses along the dating journey. If you have a strategy you can work the dating system quicker to find better matches.
So we don't really have a word for what we "are." I don't like dating, so I'm not dating her. She doesn't like the idea of a long-term relationship so we're not doing that either. Do we need an easy handle on what we are forming between us? No. Is it more convenient if you are able to say, my boyfriend and my girlfriend? Maybe a tad better than my lover, or my life-mate. But please, we're splitting hairs. Do we like to be together? Yes. Are there things we like to do together besides fool around in bed? Yes. Then do that. Do all of that.
I'm a bit closer to my ex-wife now, having seen a glimpse into her life. I know we're both doing the best we can. And Boyhood celebrates that triumph both alone and together.
When you think about the person you might like to be spending your Saturday afternoon and Saturday night with, where do you imagine you might be on any given Saturday afternoon? And then it's your opportunity/responsibility to get yourself there. She/he might already be there.
The two of us have been through a lot already. We've jumped through some burning hoops to see the next layer of protection being stripped away. We are pretty close to the pure joy of finding time together and knowing that we will enjoy the company of this other person until something else comes along.
I believe in order to find our lover we need a fairly clear picture of what they might be. Way beyond looks, the construction or destruction happens over the course of the initial weeks of "dating." What forms beyond the initial chemistry is what will remain beyond the heat of the sexual newness.
During my failing marriage, I got very good at listening for the sirens of destruction (I had done something wrong) and looking for an escape or some heroic journey to fix the problem. Both in my marriage and in this relationship, that was not the right approach.
So what is it about my silences that kept her wanting more and my love songs that freaked her out? Do women want romantic love? Or was it just too soon for this woman, to be ready for the heady fall?