Thursday, June 5, 2014

The rules?

When you're single and testing out the dating waters, there are always people around you offering you their advice, suggestions, and warnings.  Or maybe that's just me.

Plenty of people are appalled that I've tried (and believe in) online dating.  Some people think I'm too picky.  Some think I'm not picky enough.  Some think I'm trying too hard.  Others think I'm not trying hard enough.  Basically, I'm just terrible at dating in their books, I guess.  Good thing it's my dating life and not theirs, right?

When I was younger, I admit to being very picky about who I would date.  I didn't want anyone who was divorced or anyone who had kids.  I wanted someone with a college education. I ruled a guy out if he had poor taste in sports affiliation or music (I may still do this from time to time ... heh).  I also decided I should steer clear of co-workers and any guy who shared a name with any of my male relatives.

That's a lot of restrictions, huh?

Well ... as I've gotten older and watched other friends couple off, I've learned maybe some of those rules are silly.  Don't get me wrong, I still prefer a Cyclone fan over a Hawkeye any day, and I don't think I'd have anything in common with a metalhead.  But I suppose no one's perfect (not even me ... I know, I know), so I won't rule those guys out now.

What about the other rules?

Well, the last guy I dated was divorced.  Maybe too recently so.  He'd only been out of his marriage for about six months, which apparently made him not ready to date.  Or at least that's what he told me.  After five dates in two months.  Beep.  Yeah, I'm still a little irritated about it.  I don't feel like he was completely honest or up front with me.  And I actually really liked him.  But ... anyway. Moving on.  There are lots of great people who have been married before and/or who might have kids.  Those people definitely come with some baggage, but we all do.  Each situation is different and if I judge them for their past, then I don't deserve them.

A few years ago, I "hung out with" (yeah, he wouldn't call them dates) a guy who went to firefighting school instead of college.  He said it didn't count the same and asked me more than once how I felt about being with a guy who didn't have a college degree.  I told him he had still learned a skill that he learned in his job, which is basically what I did on college.  And these days, I'm not even using my degree in my current job, so who am I to judge? Clearly, a college degree does not a decent person make.

As for dating co-workers, I have seen two sides of this.  I used to work with two people who were dating and lived together.  I'm not sure how they handled all of that togetherness, but they did.  They made it work.  And it worked well.  I've also heard tales of terror from friends who dated someone from the office, and when it went south, it wasn't good.  Seeing that person every day (for eight-plus hours) and having to be civil with them was hard.  Especially if/when that person moved on, got married, and started having children.  I could definitely see how this could make work uncomfortable at best.  So ... I'm a little on the fence about this rule.

My dad and brother both have very common names.  I thought it would be weird to date someone with their names.  Then again, how often do I call my dad by his first name?  My brother doesn't even go by his first name most of the time either, so ... maybe it wouldn't be so bad?

Ultimately, I've decided having standards is good, and everyone has (or should have) deal breakers.  But an absolute checklist is something completely different.  Love is already really hard to find, why would I want to make it harder by adding a bunch of disqualifications?  I think I've realized that I'm looking for a feeling and a sense within a relationship rather than a specific person.

Do you have any hard-pressed rules for dating?


  1. I've had some of these, and I've ditched some along the way too. Kinda just depends on the guy you know? I love a good dating post though! I'm currently seeing a guy with the same name as my first serious boyfriend and that just feels strange! but at least I know our names sound good together considering we dated for 2+ years. haha

  2. I'm currently seeing a guy I met online. Honestly, I've always been really picky too, but I really like this guy. He seems to like me, texts me a lot, and he told me he wants to get to know me better. Trouble is, he's such a slow mover. We've only gone out twice in a 2 month span. I already told him if he wants to get to know me better we have to see each other more face to face (obviously!) and I think he's is hard/maybe I suck at it! haha

  3. Dating in general is lame. I hate it. Maybe that's why I don't do it very often...

    Why does everyone have to have an opinion on your dating life? I always wonder why people care so much? It's not like I spend that much time forming an opinion about their marriages. Sigh.

    My absolute dating rule is to follow my instincts. I have dated people after getting a bad feeling about them, and that's never a good thing.

  4. I used to be really picky and have "rules" for myself when it came to dating, but things have changed a lot over the past few years (and even months). I'm single again (post going up tomorrow--it's a good thing) and when I was thinking about putting myself back into the online dating pool, I thought about my profile and what I'd put in there. The last time I updated it, back in November, I know I had a list of things I was looking for in a relationship, and I don't think I want to put that in there anymore. I'd rather just put my BLOGGING profile in there--that's truly who I am and I want them to know that. As for what I'm looking for, I don't think I want to limit myself, I just want to see what's out there. So I don't think I'd put anything specific in my profile.

    The thing is, Aaron was different than who I would have picked for myself--Jewish, same height as me, not very athletic, and a tad on the selfish side. I realized that I need someone who complements me in the areas where I lack, or who would share my interests with me (even if they weren't his own) and I would do the same for him. But it's hard to put all those little things into better words without sounding picky, so that's why I'm just leaving it out and let it happen on it's own.

    But I have to agree with your last statement. Having standards is NOT a bad thing, but checklists are limiting. Throw the checklist out the window :)


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