Saturday, October 5, 2013

Dating Hangups

My cousin, Jamie, loves to give me advice on dating.  She's convinced I'm not doing enough to help myself to find women to date.  Though I've told her that I suffer from acute introvertedness, she continues to tell me to do things that I could never do, such as walking up to a woman, a complete stranger, mind you, and asking her to have coffee.  Does she not realize how ridiculous that is?  What woman would even  talk to a strange guy, let alone have coffee with him?  Am I just not brazen enough?  Or am I wrong about what I think a woman might do in that situation?  I don't know.  I just know I couldn't do it.

I'm pretty clueless when it comes to noticing if a woman is showing interest in me, as well.  I've been told, after the fact, that there have been situations where, for example, a waitress at a restaurant has flirted with me, and I was totally oblivious.  I tend not to like forward women, anyway, but given how clueless I am, I may be hopeless when left to my own abilities, and may actually need a woman to throw herself at me for me to notice her.

I tend to attract women that I don't feel attracted to.  Women I'm attracted to don't seem to care for guys like me.  What does that mean?  I don't know, but it's probably not good.

I feel so fortunate that Teresa, my wife, and I were able to find each other (with the help of my cousin, Dan, too).  I know that God had a big role in it happening, too.  We were at the right place in our lives at the right time.  Since her death, I've only been in one other significant relationship, and that one was a LOT of work.  "Ginny" was a beautiful but complex young woman who said she wasn't sure she would ever get married.  She was sure that any man would find her too difficult to ever want to date her.  I spent a lot of time trying to convince her otherwise, and I know that I truly did love her, but there were enough red flags for me to finally call it off.  It was a mutual breakup, but I think I probably took it worse than she did.  We have had zero contact since then, though, so that's just speculation.  Ironically, I found out she got married a year and a half later, so maybe the issue was me.

I don't take rejection very well.  I've gone on a lot of first dates, but very few second dates.  I've determined that this is because I'm so afraid of rejection, I write off the women if I sense they may not be interested in me, just to keep from prolonging what I believe will likely happen anyway.

The fact that I am a Christ-follower has also caused issues with potential dates.  Apparently, in our current culture, sex is a common activity between a man and woman who are attracted to each other.  I don't feel that way.  Sex is an extraordinary activity and I truly believe, as antiquated as this might be, that sex should be between husband and wife.  I know this isn't a popular stance, but this has not been a problem with (most) dates who also follow Christ.  However, others don't get it.  I've had women tell me that this isn't a problem for them, but in the next breath, they tell me they've had many sexual partners, so it's okay if they don't have sex with me.  Another potential date actually cried on the phone when I told her that I didn't believe in sex before marriage.  And yet another told me she was up for the "challenge."  For the record, both Teresa and "Ginny" had the same belief as me on this subject, and Teresa and I both waited for marriage.  And it was worth it.  Let me also state, though, that I'm not being judgmental here.  I don't necessarily care about a woman's dating history, and am not interested in hearing about it, unless there are health issues and/or ramifications.  What matters is how they feel about sex now, and that they understand why this is important to me.

I guess I'm just a bit hopeless when it comes to dating in our modern society.  I'm old enough now to be considered over-the-hill, though still young enough to care.  I really would like to find a compatible companion, but I'm not desperate enough to date just anyone.  I'd prefer to find someone close to my age, but if they're still considered young, they have to understand, unless the Good Lord has different plans for me, I really have no desire to be a father again.  And I hate to pull the "typical male" card, but looks do matter, though I have a pretty broad spectrum on what I consider attractive, and I don't entirely follow the standard "Hollywood" look.  Too vague?  I know who I'll like when I see her.  The person is more important, anyway.

Have a great evening, everyone!  Go Bucs!

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