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Dating and choosing your ideal partner is about more than initial attraction.
I’ve had an interesting dating life over the past 5 and a half years. Single after 7 years, 2 kids and the most devastating blow I’ve ever felt and all at the age of 26!
I was a pup and was in no way prepared for what dating had become since my teenage sweet boy approach. Being kind, interesting, mysterious, and funny still works for some women. But that sweet boy approach has a major flaw.
It gives off an energy of submission to attract a females attention and reminiscent of corny early ’90s RnB, to be her everything and love her deeper than any man ever could. These days the kids have shortened it and use the term ”Simp”.
I started out being “Mr Nice Guy”. Generally, I’m not an arsehole by nature so I wasn’t putting on an act, I just needed to learn and to grow up and fast!
The Tinder Generation
The age of dating apps changes the whole game, I wasn’t easy for it. A friend told me about Tinder about a month into my single life and as some people suggest, get under someone else (or on top, behind, next to, depends what you’re into).
I had to grow up because dating was no longer an RnB song, a power ballad from the ’80s, and the Romcoms were also obsolete. Women were ”savage” and we’re behaving in the same way that men had been accused of behaving for so long. I’d soon learn that I could be used for a one night stand, one in a group of guys on a rotation system and the booty call for the girl looking for a boyfriend but couldn’t date me because I had kids!
That was the lesson though. I had to know what I was looking for if I wanted something of substance, I may have still been looking in the wrong place but I had started to build requirements.
It’s Like Going Shopping For Eggs
Setting your requirements for a partner is like going shopping for eggs. You can go into any shop, anywhere and just grab some eggs, go home, fry them, eat them and your satisfied. Sounds a bit like, log on, swipe right, exchange numbers, flirt, meet up, have sex, see you never again.
But I like good quality scrambled eggs that I can make again and again with reliable eggs. So first I need to know where I can get some decent eggs, then I must decide if I want 6, 10, 12 or more eggs. What size eggs do I want? Mixed size, medium, large or extra-large? You still with me? Now you know how many and what size, you have to decide if you want caged eggs, free-range or organic eggs. The final check at this stage is to make sure that none of the eggs is broken before you decide to take your eggs home. If there’re any broken eggs, you have to find another box of eggs.
Such a process and this doesn’t take into account not breaking any eggs on the way home and once you get home, you can never predict if an egg might fall out of your hand and break once you’re at home.
What Does This Mean?
You need to set your requirements for what you want from any engagement with a person if you are actively dating.
Some standards that may be desirable yet flexible, so what are you willing to compromise on or is not a big deal to you? Next, you have your non-negotiables, the instant deal-breakers that you will not standard for or accept. The problem with 21st-century dating is that every person you meet will put their best foot forward at the beginning and you can be excused for getting wrapped up in the attention, the sexy flirtation and even start to anticipate a future with this person. This is the stage at which you’ve chosen your eggs and need to get them home without anything breaking in transit.
Have you ever been ghosted? I have and I have done it too. I can honestly say that I don’t regret it or feel bad, the game is the game and it’s a harsh reality of the times. Is it immature, of course. Dating in this climate has come with the opportunity of choice on demand and that also includes the choice of block, delete, ignore, and move on silently without the need for humility, courtesy or communication. Ghosting can occur in transit or once you get the eggs home and are ready to cook up a storm. You’ve been speaking to somebody and everything seems great and wonderful but after deciding to meet up on Saturday night, you hear nothing for 3 days! Even worse, you make plans on a Wednesday, non-stop talking up until Friday night, then radio silence from then on. You’ve just cracked n egg in transit. This isn’t your fault, that was just a weak egg and always susceptible to breaking, you just missed it as it appeared to be a good egg.
The real bad ones are those eggs that fall on the floor when you get home or just don’t seem right once you start eating them. Sometimes you can see it coming but ignore the red flags, like when you turn your back for a split second and it rolls off the counter, crashes onto the floor with a yolk, shell, and albumen mix, that you’re left to pick up the pieces of. A cracked shell and slimy mess that needs discarding and having you find another good egg for your recipe.
The egg that doesn’t taste right is reminiscent of when you just know it’s not right. Nothing was inherently wrong and nothing was bad or broken. Sometimes it just wasn’t right or maybe you should have stuck with a bacon sarnie rather than add eggs to the plate. I’ve been in this place too and to this day it’s the worst I’ve ever felt about breaking up with someone. She had told me she loved me and I didn’t feel the same. She is a beautiful, friendly and fun-loving woman with a heart of gold and I hope that she finds happiness because she deserves it, I just didn’t feel that it was right for me.
Selecting Your Eggs
I’d end by saying select your eggs carefully but you can’t always act with caution. It will take away what it means to be open and excited to be meeting new people and being able to get to know them. Setting your standards and even communicating your standards should be something that happens early on in any dating process. Essentially testing each egg and looking it over before you buy. It allows them to run away if they wish without you trying to hold them back. Let them go, they belong to the streets.
Choosing Your Ideal Partner Is Like Shopping For Eggs was originally published in ILLUMINATION on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.
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