One-date sam­pler needs to re­lax

The Guardian (Charlottetown) - - PAUSE & PLAY - El­lie Tesher

Q - I’ve been sin­gle for about a year now and am dat­ing quite reg­u­larly.

Some­times I will meet some­one who ticks off all the boxes (sta­ble, em­ployed, emo­tion­ally avail­able, etc.), but I just don’t feel that first-date spark that I’ve felt in the past when I first met pre­vi­ous long-term part­ners.

I’m gen­er­ally quick to let the per­son know that I’m not feel­ing it, so as to save them time and en­ergy.

But I’m start­ing to ques­tion whether I’m tak­ing leave too quickly, per­haps miss­ing out on some­thing good.

How much weight should my gut feel­ings hold when it comes to agree­ing to date two or three times?

I’d be happy to get to know some­one a bit bet­ter, but I feel pres­sure to make a de­ci­sion about it sooner rather than later, to not lead any­one on.

Ship Jumper

A - Your sign-off ‘Ship Jumper’ re­veals some­thing you don’t ac­tu­ally say: Dat­ing fright­ens you.

It’s more a race to the fin­ish line, than a jour­ney for you, and less about con­cern for lead­ing some­one on, than about get­ting hopes up your­self.

You don’t like mak­ing a mis­take, so won’t give any­one a sec­ond chance if those bells and whis­tles donít go off at first meet­ing.

Yes, gut feel­ings mat­ter, but you’re lis­ten­ing to a ner­vous gut rather than let­ting it re­lax.

Of course, if a date is to­tally off-putting - some­one who talks only of him­self or her­self, asks no ques­tions about you, is rude to you or oth­ers, has ob­nox­ious habits - that per­son’s a write­off.

(Note that you’re the one who’s made gen­der ir­rel­e­vant in your ques­tion, by not be­ing spe­cific.

That’s fine with me, but it’s an­other clue: You’re not forth­com­ing with de­tails about your­self, which may also be why you’re a one-date sam­pler.)

My ad­vice is to re­lax. A first date is only an in­tro­duc­tion, with both sides likely to be some­what ner­vous.

Hu­mour and per­sonal his­tory are more likely to start to be re­vealed when you meet some­one a sec­ond and third time.

Be­sides, even if not a match, the per­son may have a friend for you who is.

Q - My boyfriend and I moved in to­gether a month ago.

I picked up his phone and opened a browser and he was look­ing up per­son­als on Craigslist for women.

I then dis­cov­ered he was a mem­ber of over three open sites.

I re­ally love him but I need to know if this is nor­mal or do I need to end it now even though it will hurt?


A - You snooped and found. Some­thing prompted it - cu­rios­ity or a sus­pi­cion?

You can ra­tio­nal­ize this ‘dis­cov­ery’ with ma­tu­rity, by re­al­iz­ing that, after only a month of the com­mit­ment to live to­gether, he hadn’t got­ten around to clear­ing his con­tacts with dat­ing sites.

In that case, you could ask him if he’s cut off con­nec­tions with per­sonal dat­ing ads, and dat­ing web­sites, as (pre­sum­ably) you have done.

If he says Yes, you have a prob­lem which you cre­ated. You’d have to ei­ther trust him, or snoop again.

OR, you could ad­mit to him right now that you found this on his phone and you want re­as­sur­ance at this still-early stage that he’s not still seek­ing other women through those sites.

Oth­er­wise, you’ll be check­ing up on him re­peat­edly, which is no way to keep a re­la­tion­ship.

Is an in­ter­est in other women ‘nor­mal?’ Of course.

But that doesn’t make it ac­cept­able to a part­ner with whom some­one’s agreed to start shar­ing a life to­gether.

Tell him so.

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