Dating is not a contract!
This one is so important, especially for those who take initial stages of dating way too seriously. If you have been on the receiving end of this issue, then you know exactly what I am talking about.
Some people have a higher tendency of falling into this 'dating = contract' mode than others, but overall the end result is the same - frustration and disappointment.
How it all starts: AFTER JUST SEVERAL DATES with a new guy you cannot help but begin pondering about having a future with him. After several dates it may start feeling like you are his girlfriend, meanwhile, he is just in a 'wait and see approach' stage. For those of you who do not know - men operate on much slower dating clock, much much slower.
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So, what happens is that after only several dates it may feel like you are an item (with attached expectations) and to him - you are just a woman he is exploring the possibility of having a relationship with.
Such a mismatch in timelines and expectations will eventually blow up into your face. Fights, disappointment over expectations, and feeling used are just a few examples of unpleasant feelings you will end up experiencing.
If the above described dating scenario looks very similar to your own dating experience, then a heavy duty adjustment of attitude is required. You do not want to sabotage a promising relationship over the 'dating = contract' syndrome, do you?
Dating is just that - dating. Dating is when two people meet, spend time together, and seeing whether there is chemistry, compatibility, and a connection. When a man agrees to go on a date (or several dates) with you, it does not mean he OWES you a relationship.
Dating is a meeting of two FREE people where each person is FREE to leave at any time he or she feels like it. There are a lot of first-last dates, there are a lot of second and third-last dates also; they leave you, or you leave them. You do not owe them anything and they owe you nothing either.
In early stages of dating you do not owe them an explanation, and you do not owe them an apology. What do you have to apologize for? For the lack of chemistry? Do they owe you an apology for not feeling chemistry on their end?
It is like trying on uncomfortable shoes in a store and then apologizing to a sales associate for not buying them. This is so ridiculous and yet many ladies (and men too) keep agonizing and fall into depression over someone who has stopped communicating with them after only one or several dates.
One major reason why people feel so upset over this is due to the initial build up; there is a big chance you spent weeks and weeks communicating with him. Talking to someone you have never met is based on fantasies, beautiful dreams and imaginations. E-mailing a stranger who builds up your expectations, your hopes and dreams is very addictive and seductive, something that is very difficult to say 'no' to.
As the correspondence continues and evolves, so do your expectations and hopes as well. But once the online communication moves on to the off-line dimension it becomes a different story. After several off-line meetings either of you may say 'meh' and decide not to pursue this whole thing further. What happens to the other party? THE OTHER PARTY FEELS SUDDENLY BETRAYED.
The dumped party feels betrayed and disappointed, but over what? Over ruined dreams and crumbled fantasies? Over unmet expectations?
Please open your eyes and see the situation for what it is - it was just a fantasy world residing in your own head, the kind of world that has never existed in real life.
Your expectations of him and dreams of being together were nothing, but your own dreams, and you cannot build dreams with no reality present.
E-correspondence in conjunction with first several dates does not represent the kind of reality you use to build your dreams on. A fair amount of time needs to pass before you can assess the dating relationship, or to even start contemplating any sort of plans and expectations. BUT YOU CANNOT DO THIS AFTER ONLY THE FIRST OR SEVERAL DATES.
Your voicing out of expectations this early will make you look desperate and delusional... and he will sure run for the hills. Can you blame him?
Ladies, as a rule of thumb:
~ do not waste your time corresponding for weeks and months. It builds expectations! If after about 2 weeks of talking he does not offer to meet then you need to let him go.
~ corresponding for weeks or months will lead to a development of attachment. Should he leave after the first or several dates, you will be subjected to experiencing a painful sense of loss and loneliness
~ hold off on dreams and expectations during your first dates, you know NOTHING about him, his agenda of what he is looking for, his history with other women etc.
~ enjoy the first dates and remember, besides basic courtesy and respect, you owe each other nothing, you are NOT under contract.