Wedding Woes

Go. On. All. The. Dates.

Dear Prudence,

I’m a woman with wonderful, deep friendships with many interesting people. I have one or two friends with occasional benefits, where it’s just as easy to say, “Want to have sex? Great!” as it is to say, “Want to go swimming? Great!” Unfortunately, I’ve consistently had unhealthy romantic relationships with men. I’m straight, and I’ve dated both straight and bisexual men, and a few years ago I stopped dating completely because of the toxic choices I made with romantic relationships. I’ve really worked on myself since then, especially on developing my self-esteem and steering away from self-destructive choices. My friends have all been extremely supportive of this break. Now that the pandemic isolation is starting to lift, I feel mentally and emotionally ready (but anxious) at the prospect of dating again. I’m not yet really settled in my community, and work is a long commute away (or will be, once we eventually go back to the office), so it seems difficult to imagine meeting anyone there. I’m in a conservative branch of my career. How do I meet men in order to cultivate a healthy, long-term romantic relationship? Are dating apps out? Do I reach out to my friends for suggestions? Where do I begin?

—Ready but Nervous

Re: Go. On. All. The. Dates.

  • Date it up. Use the internet. Try new things & see if you meet someone interesting there. Definitely let your friends know you’re open if they know someone. So many options! 
  • Online dating has been a game-changer!  It has never been so easy to meet potential romantic partners, though that same aspect can sometimes cause its own problems.

    I agree with @mrsconn23 that it is a numbers game.  There isn't much invested in a first date or meet-up.  Don't put expectations on it.  Think of it like an interview.  Is there chemistry?  Did a dealbreaker come up?  Do I like this person enough to go on a second date?

    My dating history from high school was going from one long-term relationship to another.  I had one break my senior year in college.  Internet dating existed, but it was new and not that common yet.  I WISH I had looked into it at that time.  Or maybe I don't, lol.

    Then I was in a 2-year relationship again.  When that ended, I actually did a "phone" dating thing first, lol.  It was free for women and (I think) $10/month for men.  You recorded a message talking about yourself.  And then you could listen to other people's recordings and press a button to leave them a private message if you were interested.  It sounds ridiculous now because online dating has become so huge, lol.  I went on a few dates with that.  Nothing stuck, but I was intrigued at how much easier it was to meet more people that way.

    That motivated me to open a Yahoo Personals account.  Talk about opening the door to a whole new world!  I was overwhelmed with responses.  I felt like Scarlett O'Hara at the Barbecue, lol.  But the nice thing about that was it allowed me to really pick and choose the men who seemed like they would be the best fit.  In fact, I met my H through that ad!  
    Wedding Countdown Ticker
  • levioosalevioosa Southern California member
    Seventh Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    @mrsconn23 what podcast was that? I feel like FSIL B could use a listen.

  • Dating apps/online dating are definitely not out. I think almost every couple I know who's gotten together in the last decade or so met that way. Of course, there are still other ways to meet people, but this is probably the most common one I've seen recent years. 

    Be patient, though. Dating website commercials make it sound like you will meet the love of your life immediately after signing up. Chances are you will go out with several people in the next few years, whether you met them online or in some other way, and you will like some more than others. Give yourself the time and space during this process to figure out what you really want in a partner and in a relationship. You don't have to dive into a lifelong romance right now.
  • mrsconn23mrsconn23 member
    Knottie Warrior 10000 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer
    levioosa said:
    @mrsconn23 what podcast was that? I feel like FSIL B could use a listen.
    It was Reality Life with Kate Casey and the person who was talking about this was Lala Kent from Vanderpump Rules of all fucking people in the world.  LMAO 
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