Now that the Valentine’s Day mayhem is over I figured this would be the perfect time for a girl talk post on dating.  These girl talk posts usually happen organically when I am going through something personal and I want to share my thoughts with you guys.  I recently had a dating experience that had me feeling really messed up.  I consider myself to be pretty tough but
even the toughest person gets knocked down every once in awhile. Instead of letting what happen keep me down, I decided to use the experience as a lesson.  It’s always easier to see the lesson in an experience when you are on the other side of what made you feel angry, sad, upset, etc.  Of course when you are going through it, if you’re like me, you just want to have your way and you don’t care about anything else.

So after several conversations with my brother “the man whisperer” I decided I needed to come up with some concrete dating guidelines.  Before I get into the tips that I complied from my personal guidelines let me just say I am not a “dater”.  I prefer to focus my attention on one person at a time and get to know them.  All of this dating but not dating, but the man expects the “girlfriend/wife treatment”, but I’m not your girl isn’t for me! Don’t get me wrong, I’ve done the situationship thing in the past but it always ended up with one person feeling slighted when the other didn’t want to be in an actual relationship.

I had my fun after my divorce five years ago but the fun and games are over. I want a serious relationship that will lead to marriage and I want the option of having children.  From that goal I compiled this list of dating tips.

1.  Don’t give up your me time.  Mr. Nice Guy asks you out and the next thing you know you’re smitten and trying to spend every moment possible with him.  Of course, spending face-to-face time with someone is the only way you will get know a person but don’t give up your me time to make that happen.  You should always maintain your me time no matter how new or old your relationship is.  Spending time apart will actually allow you to enjoy and appreciate the time you do spend with Mr. Nice Guy.

2.  Money isn’t everything but.  You’ve met Mr. Nice Guy and you’ve gone out on a few dates.  However, you discover his finances aren’t intact.  Do you stop dating him? Do you continue to see him? I would say that depends on what your expectations are.  If you know that you love to travel and want a Mr. Nice Guy that can participate in those travels then you may have to cut him loose.  However, if you are okay with the possibility that your dates maybe limited then keep dating Mr. Nice Guy.  Whatever the situation just know that Mr. Nice Guy should always start out how he can hold out.  If your first date is at five star restaurant your going to expect something along those same line for your next date.  Of course every date doesn’t have to be a five star restaurant but pay attention to how Mr. Nice Guy handles his finances.

3.  Kids are big deal!  All of the following will affect your dating life at one point or another depending on your personal preference: you don’t have children, you have children, you’re not sure if you want children, you have children and don’t want anymore, or you don’t date people with children.  I refused to date men with children due to a bad experience I had in my 20s.  Now that I’m 35, I’ve realized that’s virtually impossible and I choose to handle dating situations with children on a case by case basis.  I want the option of having children.  If the person I am seeing does not want children that’s a deal breaker for me.  Not only are the kids a big deal but the relationship Mr. Nice Guy has with his children’s mother is a big deal and should also be taken into consideration.

4.  Go with your gut.  Women’s intuition is a real thing. If you feel like Mr. Nice Guy is keeping something from you or isn’t being forthcoming about a situation call him out on it. I spent several years of my marriage glossing over certain things because I was afraid of the truth. My intuition told me exactly when things weren’t right and instead of confronting my husband I decided to play Harriet the Spy but that’s a topic for another girl talk post. Don’t ignore that feeling you get when you know something just isn’t right.

5.  Listen up.  When you first meet Mr. Nice Guy he seems like he’s everything you’ve ever wanted: handsome, well-spoken, he treats you well, attentive, blah, blah, blah.  While you are basking in all of his fabulousness make sure you are keeping your ears open and picking up on Mr. Nice Guys cues.  If he says he’s not looking for a serious relationship, believe him.  If he says he doesn’t really have time for dating, believe him.  If he says he’s a workaholic, believe him.  It’s not our job to try and change Mr. Nice Guy into who we think he should be or try and manipulate the situation to suit our needs. Listen to Mr. Nice Guys expectations and wants.

6.  Speak up.  A lot of times women hold back our expectations because we don’t want to scare off Mr. Nice Guy. You only cheat yourself when don’t speak up about what you want.  Don’t settle because Mr. Nice Guy only wants a casual relationship.  Don’t all of sudden re-think having children because Mr. Nice Guy has four kids and isn’t interested in having more.  If you want children, make it known. If you’re not into casual dating and you are dating with a purpose, that purpose being marriage, make it known. If you’re just looking for a cuddy buddy make that known also!

7.  Calling it quits is ok.  I hold on to relationships longer than I should. Not too long ago I was dating an amazing Mr. Nice Guy. This dude was every woman’s dream but he turned out to be a liar. Instead of immediately letting him go I held on to the relationship. I tried to convince myself that we could still live happily ever after knowing full well it wouldn’t be possible.  I eventually came to my senses and called it quits. Don’t hold on to Mr. Nice Guy past his expiration date.  Let him go so you can find an even better Mr. Nice Guy.

8.  Don’t get discouraged.  The entire dating process can be exhausting. Trying to find and get to know Mr. Nice Guy is a process and the older we get the harder the process is. However, despite my feelings about dating or not dating I know my worth. I won’t settle because I know I am awesome and I would make an amazing significant other, girlfriend, or wife someday.

I am no dating expert but I do know what I want out of a relationship, what I don’t want and what I am willing to compromise on. I want someone that has common interest with me, forces me to level up, loves trying new things, cares about their health, is conscious, and understand my introvertness.  I want a Mr. Let’s Get Money, Have Fun, Eat Good, Workout, Travel and Raise a family.

Did you find my dating tips helpful? Do you have anything to add? Do you have any funny dating stories you want to share?  Leave a comment below.

12 Comments

  1. Great article! I love that this is based on your personal experiences which are familiar to many women!

  2. Mrs. Smith

    Do.Not.(!) marry someone who has different financial priorities and goals. Love will not conquer that (ask me how I know).

    I could write a book on stepfamily issues but I’ll just say…love doesn’t conquer that either. Be frank, be open, get counseling *beforehand*. The failure rate of stepfamily marriages is over 60% and jumps to over 70% if both people have children. It’s hard. Even in the best of circumstances. And most setups aren’t the ideal circumstance.

    I totally agree with the other points too! Too often women are expected to work harder to make relationships work and they often push aside their intuition and the doubt and the questions. And then waste years of their lives. :/

  3. Girl you know we are on the same page! I agree with all of those and live by those terms now. As I’m reading through each of those I could tell you a specific instance why I now follow those guidelines. I too hold on to relationships longer than their expiration date because of being scared to be alone and looking like I can’t keep a man. I quickly realized it was causing me major unhappiness and you know when a relationship is over and you feel like weight has lifted, you made the right decision. I would add 3 more things that I had to learn along the way. 1) Look for a partner to complement you, not complete you. You really need to love and know yourself before you enter a relationship. A man can spot a desperate, insecure woman a mile away and they will swoop in for the kill. You must be a complete person because no one can complete you. 2) Be upfront from date 1 what your expectations are. If I’m looking for marriage and you just want to chill and see where it goes then I’m done. A marriage minded man is very specific about what he wants. 3) Be clear about what you bring to the table. Spend your single time invested in hobbies, getting your finances in order etc so that you may attract and keep that man. A lot of time people ask for the man/woman to bring X Y and Z to the table but yet your house isn’t in order. Two way street. I did not mean for this to be so long but girl you were speaking my truth lol

    • Mrs. Smith

      “Be upfront from date 1 what your expectations are”
      I love this. People talk about ‘scaring someone away’. Well if you being your honest self scares them away…let them go!

  4. Wow, this post was right on time, and thank you so much for sharing it! I’m a 35 year old woman who just ended a 4 year relationship. I should have ended it years ago but my fear of starting over and being alone in my 30s frightened me. I still want the option to have children and he wasn’t sure. So finally, I walked away. I’m an introvert too so going out and meeting people isn’t the easiest thing for me. Right now I’m trying to focus on getting more fit and better with age, but loneliness is sometimes overwhelming. This post helps because it lets me know I’m not alone. Thank you again for your honesty and your willingness to share it.

  5. I agree with all of your points, but I’m kicking myself now by not following through with #4 and #5. I’ve been married for 7 years and I saw all the signs now Im deciding to bring them up. Hopefully we can get them resolved through counseling and clear communication.

  6. Hey VBFF,

    This was a great post! I can definitely relate to all of the points you mentioned. Number 5 hits close to home for me, last year I tried the online dating thing and seemed to hit it off with this guy however, he never had time to meet!!! Which was a complete turn-off for me, and ultimately made me feel he was disinterested. So after some time went by and we still hadn’t met I backed off.

    I took a year off from online dating and decided to reopen my account and how do I see? Mr. Seemingly nice guy. So I reached out to him via text, and he’s all like wow, I really liked you back then and I’m not sure why we hadn’t met. Yada yada, but he had still not mentioned when we would. I hinted at it but again nothing….so I backed off.

    Yea he seems like an ok guy, but I just think something’s up. Either he’s not really single, doesn’t have the time or is not interested. So….next!!

  7. disqus_Pxmg1z0w62

    You are AWESOME…thanks for sharing!!!!

  8. Girl this is GOOD! #2 was my struggle in my current relationship…being honest with myself about my expectations and what’s really important to me. I’m just a few years behind you and everything you said – except for ever having been married or in an extremely serious relationship in my twenties – applies to me also, even being the strong women who at times has been knocked down, despite it all.

  9. To guys who have no luck with women for whatever reason (too quiet, too nice, whatever) here is my advice: Concentrate on your career and education where you will see a positive return. Re-order your priorities and move dating from #1 to #10. Career and education should be #1 and #2. If anyone asks why you are not dating say this “I am pretty busy right now but will get back to it at a future date.” This is an acceptable response that offends no one. Your enhanced status might improve your chances with women or it might not but it doesn’t matter since you are better off regardless.

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