Awkward First Dates

First dates are awkward. But they can be even more awkward if you’re not sure if you’re even on a date.

Guys, I implore you to make it clear to a woman you are interested in that you are taking her on a date.

You are not “hanging out”.

That is the most frustrating thing in the world. I feel like guys won’t risk even asking women out in a clear manner anymore.

I get it: rejection sucks. No one wants to ask anyone out because no one wants to be rejected. And yet, if you never go on dates, it will be hard to find a person who wants to be in a relationship (if that’s even what you want). (Also, if that’s not what you want, that’s totally okay too. Just ignore this post).

I recently went on a date (apparently it was a date, I found out later, I wasn’t clear on that when it occurred) that I thought went really well. I expected him to ask me out again. And then I never heard from him. Which was super awkward, since I’ve known him for like a year and we hang out in the same friend-group. So then I’m wondering, “well gosh, maybe I’m the only one that had a good time, he obviously wasn’t into it like I was!” and that’s when the rejection sinks in.

And it makes you feel like you’re not good enough.

The older I get, the more I realize how little the physical stuff matters and how much more important it is to find someone who is rooted in Christ. When you really get to know someone, the physical stuff tends to fall away anyway. Or at least in my experience, people become more attractive to you when you fall in love with them.

I want to find someone to love for the rest of my life (and I hope that I will live a long one). This means that I want to really know the person before I go and get married. My parents have been married over 35 years, and they seem to just be more in love as time goes on. That is what I want.

I don’t want to be anyone’s “starter wife”. I don’t want divorce to ever be an option. I want to find a partner to go through this crazy life with that will love me furiously, as I will him. We will both be broken, and flawed, because we are only human. But that’s where the importance of a relationship with God comes in.

I had a great first date last night. However, we have not had a serious religion talk yet, so I’m nervous/anxious about that. I don’t want to like someone too much and find out he is not on the same page as me when it comes to that stuff. I don’t want the heartache (again) of falling in love with someone who doesn’t believe the same things I do– and I’m not saying I need to find someone who agrees with everything I do on every subject.

 

The entire situation with my ex-boyfriend is made fraught with the fact that I still him regularly (he works at the same company). Don’t worry, I’ll never make that mistake again…. I tried to say no the first couple of times he asked me out, but I finally gave in. Then we ended up dating for over two years. If we had gotten married like I thought we were going to, it would have made for a lovely story. But that’s not what happened.

After that experience, I know that I won’t ever leave the awkward Jesus conversations until after I’ve fallen for a guy. Some questions I’ve decided that I would like to talk about when talking to a single guy:

  • Does he go to church? Or if he doesn’t have a current church, is he willing to check out yours? Are you on the same page in regards to attendance and serving? (For instance, I’m also involved in a weekly community group and volunteer in the nursery). Is he on the same page as you?
  • Does he believe that Jesus is the son of God and that he died on the cross for our sins?
  • Is he willing to lead in your relationship? Will he pray with you, and for you?

All things I now consider very important when trying to find a Godly man. The ending of my last serious relationship really damaged my confidence and eroded my self-esteem.

I felt like I couldn’t trust my judgement anymore regarding men (I was so sure I was going to marry him, I just KNEW it. He was “the one” and that was all there was to it.)

Of course, that’s not what happened at all. Because real life is not a hallmark movie. Real life is not black and white, it’s all gray. Real life involves humans who end up disappointing and hurting us (even when they’re trying not to).

And it took me getting hurt multiple times to realize that just because people love each other, that does NOT mean that those people should automatically get married and have kids. Sometimes it doesn’t work out, even when you care for someone. Sometimes, it takes buckets of tears and months for you to feel semi-normal again.

I’m just extremely grateful to God that I was able to have a very enjoyable first date experience. It was refreshing and it gave me a little hope for the future (that I will not be alone forever).

Here’s to hoping.

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Dating Sucks

I’m just going to say it: dating really sucks.

Dating when you’re a Christian seems to be even more difficult. People don’t get it; they don’t get why you have certain ideas about what should or should not happen on a date, or what the big deal is about sex, or a man pursuing a woman…..

“Your idea of dating is antiquated”, they say.

“Get real…. No man is going to be okay with not sleeping with you”.

To be honest, I’m getting sick of answering questions about my dating life (or lack thereof) because I’m sick of seeing people’s reactions. I can tell when they think I’m being ridiculous (even if they don’t say it). I want it to not bother me. But it still does sometimes.

People are in disbelief. “No one has standards these days”, they say.

But that does not mean that as a believer, I should just say, “oh well everyone else is doing it so…..” like it doesn’t matter. People may not understand it, but actually, they don’t need to. They just need to respect it. If your friends can’t respect your boundaries, get some new friends.

We are all broken people. I am broken, and so are you. We all have pasts…. pasts that have hurt us, and hurt others. But there is grace from God. As believers, we can repent and ask for forgiveness and have the slate wiped clean. Jesus is not holding your past against you. So it doesn’t matter what happened in the past, if you are holding yourself to a higher standard now….. that is what is important.

This is something that can be hard for me to believe at times. I can’t always believe that God isn’t judging me for my past mistakes and reminding me of all of the times I’ve messed up. It seems too good to be true for Him to forgive me and just let it go.

I feel like most dating articles/books are about manipulating: manipulating other people and manipulating situations in order to get what you want (whatever that may be). Is this really the way to an honest, healthy relationship?

We are told that as believers we are not “of this world”. There should be something different about believers. That’s something that I have struggled with myself. I am a believer, but sometimes I wonder if people who meet me, or know me from work, can see a difference between me and a nonbeliever. Or are we both just “nice”? We can all be nice, even moral, people when we want to be.

How do I, as a believer, show Jesus’ love to others? How am I showing others that He has made a difference in my life? Or am I too wrapped up in my own struggles to focus on anyone else? I think a big part of it is telling our own stories to others. This is something that I have gotten better at, but still makes me anxious. Dating makes all of this stuff even more difficult… it seems to have gotten more and more complicated over time:

  • Who is supposed to pay? (I would say that the guy should normally pay for the first date, but I tend to be old fashioned about that)
  • Is it better to be friends first or not – (there seems to be a huge difference of opinion on this)

This is what I’m thinking on tonight. I don’t feel well, and I’m drinking tea and laying on the couch. It’s one of those times that I think: it would be so nice to have someone here with me, taking care of me. Someone who will run to the store and get ginger ale or soup, or more Nyquil. The little things that help you get through the night (when you can’t talk or breathe out of your nose). Hopefully someday I’ll find someone who wants to take care of me when I’m sick, because I know I’m pretty awesome at taking care of others when they need it.

I’m sure that God has this whole thing planned out, but sometimes (especially now, when I’m single, and lonely) that I just want to say to Him “WHAT IS THE HOLD UP?!” because I don’t get it. I’m getting older and I’m afraid that I’m running out of time. I’m pretty sure that is a lie from Satan and I’m not THAT OLD AT ALL and need to just relax. Of course that is easier said than done.

I’ll keep working on it.