My last column regarding online dating had some great advice to keep in mind as you look for your “Mr. Right.” I think I failed to account for the fact that you can lose your mind while dating. All of the fun and excitement of being in a new relationship can cause you to walk through everything else in life in a dream-like state. Then the breakup comes, and it’s like dumping ice cold water on a sleeping person — totally unexpected and a little shocking.
After six weeks of seeing Mark, he decided to end it. Via a text message. Needless to say, I was less than enthused, even though I think it’s for the best. I wish him well and hope that he finds someone great, although he’s going to be hard pressed to find someone better than me (smile).
This breakup experience has not been without its benefits. I have learned a thing or two that I’ve decided to share.
Red means stop
There were some signs along the way that the wheels were starting to wobble and the bolts were getting loose. I decided that it could be worked out, and we just needed to get to know each other better. Oh the naïveté!
If you think things are off track, talk about it with the person. Just go into it knowing that whatever feeling you have after that conversation is probably in line with where things are headed. In retrospect, I should have known right away, from one particular conversation with Mark, to end it myself. But when he didn’t take the out I offered him, I figured I didn’t need to either. After all, we’re both adults, right? (Eye roll.)
Evaluate the relationship
Be totally honest with yourself about your role in the relationship, especially if it’s not working out. The biggest question is, are you being yourself? I can honestly say that I was me and that I wouldn’t change anything. If someone you’re dating isn’t into you being the real you, then you don’t need to be into them.
Grieve the loss
I somehow had it in my mind that you don’t cry over six-week-long dating relationships. I found out that it’s actually a relief to expel that mental and emotional anguish through tears. It was like a weight was lifted when I cried about how it hurt when he texted me and that he is totally out of my life. That being said, I’m moving on to what may be next.