Ok, I wanted to take a moment to address the topic of dating. I have A LOT to say about dating as an adult. I’ll dig deeper in later posts. Today I wanted to talk about what brought me to the conclusion, “I need to stop dating… for my health.” Whoa Sara! That’s a little dramatic don’t you think? Haha! Before you write me off as a crazy person (well, on this post alone) let me explain.
First, for those of you that are not familiar with what dating as an adult is like, here are a few insights.
- We all have baggage. All of us. Whether that is from divorce, loss, our jobs, etc.
- Most of us are broke. We are paying for divorces, child support, starting over…
- None of us have time. Between jobs, kids and the usual adulting duties, there isn’t much time left to date.
- Most of us are very lonely.
Looks pretty horrible when you lay it out like that. Honestly, the cards are stacked against us. There is limited opportunity to meet someone organically and online dating is a nightmare (I’ll get into that subject a little here but could talk about this one for days).
At this point I have been single (starting when I moved out) for almost three years. I went through a period when I was dating a lot. I had discovered the “joys” of online dating. I could meet attractive guys from my couch. Talk about an ego boost. I had been through 25 years of bad relationships (an ex boyfriend and my marriage).
When you are a woman, online dating can be like a second job. You get so many messages it can be overwhelming. At first I felt like I needed to look into everyone. What if this guy was THE ONE? After a few months and a few horrible dates you realize that it isn’t worth the time. The whole process of online dating sets us up to become jaded at an accelerated pace.
In early 2016 I realized I was making too many exceptions with men. I would justify what should be a red flag simply because I was lonely. At this point in my life I was starting to learn more about myself and why I had made the choices I had made in the past. So I started paying more attention to those red flags and would say “No Thanks, but good luck” as soon as one popped up. That narrowed it down to a handful of guys. Yeah, just a few, sad but true.
I was also starting to analyze what changes I needed to make in my life. My stress and anxiety were through the roof. I was starting to see dating in a different light. It was a huge drain on my time and energy. Time and energy I should be using setting myself up for success. Recharging so I can handle all of the craziness that is my life. I needed balance.
Dating was adding to my stress. I would make commitments to go on a date and immediately regret it. By going on a date I was adding stress, what am I going to wear? what do I say? what if its awful? and so one and so on. I was also adding to my stress by that loss of time. I could have spent that time helping myself. Whether that was doing my grocery shopping and food prep so I’m less stressed when the kids are here or just getting some quiet time for myself.
I realized I had to stop. As I have said, I was definitely headed for a nervous breakdown. Some day I will have time to date. Now is just not that time. My energy is limited and I need to focus on myself and my family. By dating, those two priorities in my life were suffering.