SINGLE AGAIN : GETTING BACK ON THE DATING SCENE
Author: Alice Turner
Being single is a phase in everyone’s life. This could be as a result of:
· a failed relationship,
· being divorced or
· as a result of losing a loved one to death (widowed).
In this article I focus mostly on the mature women who suddenly find themselves single again. There are various reasons that force us to go back on to the dating scene. Some of the reasons may be:
· mother nature
· loneliness or
· just emptiness in one’s life or
· even by mere co-incidence of events that will find one in a new relationship.
Getting back into the dating scene is a very daunting experience for many people. In a way one may be opening oneself to vulnerability or even pain again. Considering the ever changing lifestyles and introduction of modern technology which makes interaction much easier, there comes with it the danger of lack of commitment from the other party, thus getting back into the dating scene can be a very challenging experience. There are no guarantees in relationships anymore like in the past.
In most people it is the fear of the unknown that haunts us. One can never be confident of the other person’s experiences, their past and their motives when two people get together. There is always the fear of the hidden agenda that haunts new relationships. Fear of getting together with someone who may be:
· a fraudster wanting to use you to benefit their means
· a serial killer who is looking for a someone to prey on
· a paedophile who is a danger to all youngsters in the family
· a player who is just out to have fun and with no intention of commitments
· a gold digger who is just out to make money from that relationship, the list is endless.
It is that fear of the unknown that make it even more difficult to find Mr or Mrs Right. Mobility of people makes it difficult to confidently say that ‘this is the right one for me’. It is an issue of:
· going with your gut,
· exploring the unsaid past
· being a careful listener for that odd word that may spell out the real person
· the silent actions
· contact with their friends, if any, that may or may not be accessible which may help to build a form of confidence.
These days it is not easy to sit back and relax because the unexpected may erupt right in your face. Before one bounces back into the dating scene, there are a few issues to consider:
· Are you psychologically ready for a new relationship? It is pointless trying to find comfort in a new relationship when the past is still haunting you.
· Are you sure of your sexuality? At times one has to go against society’s expectations because that is what makes one happy.
· Boost own confidence, otherwise a failed past relationship may destroy your self esteem and self worth. Do not expect a new relationship to boost your confidence.
· Take care of yourself first before you bounce back into the dating scene. Simple things like exercise to improve the way you look, clothing yourself to your satisfaction, taking care of skin integrity, being yourself and not a mirror of someone else, having set goals and targets for yourself help build your confidence for the dating scene.
· Build a bank of love around yourself from friends, neighbours, family, work colleagues before you access the dating scene. Otherwise you open yourself up for abuse in that new relationship.
· Start as friends to determine you have something in common and can tolerate each other on a long term basis. If that friendship does not have that extra sparkle, there is no harm in adding that person into the friendship bank, if they are worth saving, and remain free to start all over again than to jump blindly into a relationship out of desperation only to find out later that there is nothing in common between the two of you. It is more difficult trying to come out of a relationship than brushing someone away before committing to a relationship. If you rush you may find yourself tangled.
· Dating as single parents has more pressure because you have to consider blending the whole family into the relationship rather than just the two people concerned. There are also existing relatives from both former sides that one cannot easily forget and do away with in their new relationship.
· Remember you are opening yourself to a new set of friends who may or may not approve of the relationship. Some can even make life very difficult to a point of breaking up the new relationship.
· In this modern world of people migration, inter-relationships are slowly getting high. Adapting to new cultures and new expectations can be very daunting. That is where good self esteem plays a pivotal role to be able to bridge the gap.
· Past experiences may make it very difficult to be effective on the dating scene, be it a failed relationship, an abusive or violent past relationship, divorce due to any reason or death. Human nature is such that we build our future based on our past experiences. So the more mature one is, the more difficult it is to be comfortable on the dating scene. A simple wrong move from the other party may be viewed in the wrong perspective and may open up a world of negative experiences that may destroy the new relationship. In order to start dating again, one must be willing to let go of the anger, the sorrows of the past relationship and interact with other singles, being open to discuss own experiences so as to share other people’s experiences, accepting that you are not alone in your situation and be prepared to make the first positive move forward leaving your past behind you. Even if it may mean consulting a counsellor, do it if that would help build your self confidence.
· Getting back into the dating scene after the age of fifty is a very tough game. Times have changed so much. One has less energy and you are more self-conscious and that is when self esteem plays a very crucial role. Because you have a wealth of experiences, both negative and positive and have a different perspective about relationships it takes your whole self to adapt to a new relationship and yet it is very possible. I believe the more mature one is the more one is able to deal with any unforeseen situation. What is needed is confidence, focus and determination to achieve own goals on a shared forum. Bouncing back into the dating scene is a job, a learning curve and a pleasure that can help to rejuvenate you if handled in the best way.
Now ladies, the ball is in your court, the sky is the limit. You are important, never let anything or anyone pull you down.