As I said in last weeks blog, with lovers day fast approaching I am specifically talking dating & relationships over the next few weeks. Last weeks post was on the mental space needed to be happy during your single season so I thought it would be a nice transition into what dating looks like when you make a decision to begin dating again.
I have had numerous of conversations with other singles, married friends, both male and female and we all have agreed on one thing and that is that the art of dating is gone. There's this loom and doom most singles feel and I have spent so much time not only encouraging myself but also others that when God is ready for you to meet your life partner it will happen. Though I'm not sure I'm very convincing. It's quite a mess out here.
I heard a pastor say that dating is the "gathering data" stage and I couldn't agree with that more. During your dating phase you're allowed to date multiple people, see what's out there and make determinations on if any of the people you are currently dating could possibly make it to the next stage which is courting, this again is just my personal opinion. Courting then leads to the engagement and marriage, if this is what you desire. Sounds easy when laid out like that but there's so much wrong that happens during dating these days that it all gets a little sketchy. There is a lot of jumping the gun in the dating stage directly into some random mixture of dating/courting/and now what?
When people skip that proper dating stage they are likely skipping important conversations and determining if they even want the same things. There's this weird thing that happens during dating where if people go out enough times they determine they are in a relationship, lots of times without really figuring out if this person wants kids, wants to be married, or even wants to settle down. In my case for example if a man is still wanting children then he needs to keep it pushing, my factory is closed lol! What would I look like entertaining a man still wanting more kids and not figuring this out until way too late, no matter how great he is I'd have to let him go. We all have the right to say "ok I went out on a date with this person however I've determined we probably aren't a match" not matching with everyone that you hang out with does not mean there is a flaw with either of you. That's a lot of pressure trying to be for everyone. Use the dating stage correctly and I believe a lot of today's situationships would go away. We've also got to let go of this "pick me" mentality. Please don't shoot the messenger but because there's a shortage of available men that are ready to date once you reach a certain age, women begin to have this "pick me" mentality. They are waiting to be chosen and I in my humble opinion think that has killed some of the art of dating. The pick me mentality is why I think lots of relationships are fast forwarding in confusion. Women, I am not speaking of majority but there are a lot of women that are not paying attention as to if they are a match with someone and if the end goals are even the same before starting to over function in the dating stage. The over functioning I talked about in one of my earlier post but it's essentially either trying to "prove" yourself worthy and taking on way more than needed, no equality essentially in the relationship. Remove the "pick me" mentality and now you have two people dating and both trying to determine if this is something they'd like to explore together more exclusively in the "courting" phase.
Now I may lose some here but to me courting is old school, it's the moment a man truly steps into treating this woman like this is his woman and a woman reciprocates. It's where two people say let's get exclusive and cut out all the others and focus on only one another. Most men will lead in this phase, with setting proper dates and chivalry. This does not mean a woman should not show levels of reciprocity I'm just saying this is what this looks like to me, I'm just a old school girl. The art of this is lost in the lack of vulnerability, men have listened to some women call them thirsty and other men call them "captain save a... you know what". These titles have men afraid to "spoil" a woman, I don't know if spoiled is the right word I'm looking for but that language and those labels have caused some real damage out here. Then you have the women that say "I don't need a man" and while that may be true, because yes "need" is such a strong word however you can still want and desire. Personally when it snowed the other day and I was outside with my shovel I said "ok Jesus where the man at"?. I tickle myself during those moments! Either way I just think we are in a true state of emergency. The vulnerability is truly lost and replaced with this awkward space of two people consistently trying to protect only themselves yet trying to find love, a true oxymoron. You have to let your guards down and get vulnerable. There's no guarantee you won't get hurt but if your goal is not to be called a "special friend" in someone's obituary you are going to have to get real "chin up buttercup" and keep it pushing lol!!
So now what, what do we do to fix it? I think if I knew the answer to that I'd be a top paid dating coach lol! However my answer would be relax, be patient, live your absolute best life and enjoy every "single" moment, pun intended:). Eventually I 100% believe if you do this long enough God will present the person with a like mind that desires exactly the same things you desire. So just wait and be patient. Enjoy yourself this valentines day treat yourself to a massage or a candle *wink* and if you're not afraid of going to a restaurant during the pandemic, go alone and enjoy your favorite meal or just order your favorite meal to go. Take a trip alone or with friends, get a room way out somewhere or whatever floats your boat but the goal is to just LIVE your life!!
Remember love is light, love is peace, love is purpose.