Hey there, average single person. Feeling lonely, but not really very good at meeting people/don't have a lot of opportunities to meet people? There's an excellent tool for you. It's called "Online Dating," and it involves something called the "Internet." It's also kind of awesome, despite what all of your friends and characters in TV and movies say about it.
The typical criticism of online dating sites like eHarmony, OK Cupid, or Tinder is that they are for desperate losers who can't meet people on their own. But the truth is, a lot of people just don't have TIME to get out there and mingle. Online dating platforms are a great way to connect with people, meet up, and form legitimate relationships. And there are tons of great people on there! Not just desperate shut-ins with a billion cats. So all you younger people afraid of what people will think about you when you mention using online dating: forget what people think! Take a chance and use this great tool. You'll really be surprised by the results.
Have you ever gotten stuck in that awkward and frustrating zone between friendship and dating, where you talk to someone all the time -- texting, Facebook chatting, talking on the phone, and even Skyping -- but you just can't decide if they're interested in you or not? Live by this simple rule: Who cares?
What's really holding you back? If you think they might be interested in you but aren't sure, chances are you're just being paranoid. They're probably waiting for you to make a move. You'll be surprised how quick and easy it is to just ask someone out, and even more surprised to see how easily they say yes. Just making that first move is the difference between starting your relationship, and spending months in frustrated anguish. And if they end up saying no, what have you lost? Somebody said no to you? The world is full of no's. Getting told no is what helps you to learn and grow, and all you have to do is try again.
Ok, you've met an awesome guy/girl and have been dating for a couple of months. You're starting to get more secure in the relationship (you've evolved past the stage of always being nervous and trying to impress them), and now you can focus on getting to know the person. Well, inevitably you're going to start noticing little things that bother you -- no two people are alike, and nobody is perfect. The common trap that a lot of people get themselves into is freaking out about these little differences and letting them consume their thoughts. You thought this person was so amazing on the surface and invested a lot of trust in them, and suddenly you feel betrayed when you find out some tiny flaw that they apparently kept from you in the beginning.
There's a huge difference between having standards and just being overly nit-picky. You've got to choose your battles, and if this person is everything you're looking for -- smart, funny, well-read, great body, and they love playing video games -- but they chew with their mouth open or something, you should probably have a conversation about it rather than self destructing the entire relationship. Don't let the small things get to you.
Ok, we all know you're super excited about this new relationship, and you want to shout it from the digital rooftops. You want to change your relationship status on Facebook, upload a billion pictures, and make post after post about how much you love them. Please don't.
It's fine to talk about your relationship with friends from time to time, and a few pictures and posts here and there aren't hurtful, but when you do nothing but talk about your relationship online you create a false expectation that nobody can live up to. Everyone will regard you as this perfect, amazing couple, and when you inevitably have issues they'll seem bigger than they actually are. No relationship is perfect, and typically the ones that seem perfect are the ones that end up having the most problems. Keep it private, and things will end up a lot better.
A lot of the time, your instinct when you get into a new relationship is to spend every waking moment with that person. You like them a lot, so why wouldn't you? This is great and all, but if you've got nothing else going on in your life then you aren't really an individual. Your life shouldn't be defined by the relationship you're in. It should be defined by your hobbies, your career, and your goals.
After a while of only really doing anything with your significant other, you've doomed yourself to losing touch with your other friends, not focusing on your goals, and forgetting who you are as a person. This isn't going to be a very good thing if you end up breaking up with this significant other. Who are you then? Don't fall into the trap of losing who you are to a relationship. Do things alone. Work on your goals. Hang out with other friends. Write a book. Do anything.
When you grow attached to someone and then find faults in them, your instinct is to try and get them to change the way that they think or behave. If their faulty behavior is something harmful or destructive, then you can definitely have a conversation about getting them to change it. But if the thing you have a problem with is just simply a part of their personality that you don't agree with, nothing good can come of asking them to change it.
Even if your significant other is willing to change this part of themselves, they won't even be the same person you fell in love with. They'll grow resentful of your desire for them to be something that they're not, and ultimately it will lead to bigger issues. Either have constructive conversations about the issue so that you can both come to an agreement about it, learn to accept the thing you take issue with, or consider that maybe they're not the right person for you. You'll both be happier in the long run if you avoid trying to change each other.
After you've been with a person for a while, the tendency is to start taking everything that they do for granted. "Of course he/she buys you flowers every Wednesday night and brings you breakfast in bed on the weekends. That's just what they've always done," you'll say to yourself. Or, "Obviously he/she likes to sit and listen to my long stories about work drama and then try to make me feel better about it. That's just how he/she is." When you start expecting these things from your significant other, they will start to feel under appreciated.
Try to put things into perspective every once in a while. Take stock of everything that your significant other does for you, write down a list, and keep that list in your wallet/purse. Every once in a while, take that list out and remind yourself that these are the great things that you have the privilege of getting from your girlfriend or boyfriend. Try not to stop appreciating them. Your girlfriend/boyfriend won't start feeling resentful or under appreciated, and you'll constantly be reminded how lucky you are to have them.
This one seems like a no brainer, but we mean REALLY communicate with each other. Don't be closed off and elusive. If you're thinking about how much you dislike the way your significant other treats you, tell them. If you're thinking about how much you love them, tell them. If you're thinking about rubber duckies and hamburgers, tell them. Don't just pretend like you're thinking about nothing. Nobody is thinking about nothing, and acting like that will only make your partner nervous.
We're not saying to tell your partner every insignificant thought that runs through your head at all times. Some things are private, even from a girlfriend or boyfriend. But if they are curious/concerned as to what's on your mind, communicate with them. Even if it's just something simple. They'll really appreciate the openness, and will be more likely to be open with you in the future.
9. Don't Fight Too Much But Don't Fight Too Little
This one's tricky. If you're always fighting with your partner, and the peaceful times are a rarity, something is wrong and you should probably consider moving on. But here's where people get tripped up. If you NEVER fight, something is probably wrong as well. Everyone has disagreements about certain things, and the healthy thing is to discuss those differences of opinions. If you are drifting through your relationship, never discussing issues or butting heads at all, then you aren't properly communicating. One or both of you is holding back and not letting their true feelings be known.
If you disagree with something that your partner says or does, tell them. You don't have to yell at them or start a huge fight, but these issues should be discussed. Typically, you can come to a civil, reasonable agreement on the matter. But if you bottle it up inside and never say anything, that will build up into resentment and anger, and eventually it'll all come spilling out.
Jealousy is unhealthy and toxic. If you don't feel like you can trust your partner to go out for a night on the town without you, then why are you even with them? If they would cheat on you, then you shouldn't even want to be with them in the first place. The only reason to be with a person is if you are so confident that they'd never betray your relationship, you trust them completely.
Instead of trying to keep your partner from doing things or seeing people out of distrust and jealousy, just communicate about them. Be open to the things that your partner wants to do. If you place that trust in them, they'll probably be less afraid to tell you what they're doing, everyone will be in the loop, and nobody will have to worry about anything.
You got caught cheating, or you didn't do the dishes like you were asked. Either way, don't try and come up with some elaborate reason as to how it's not your fault. Listen, plenty of things are going to be your partner's fault, and plenty of things are going to be your fault. Couples can get so wrapped up in playing the blame game that no progress is ever made in solving a problem.
The best thing that you can do is just take responsibility for the things that you've done, try to explain them or apologize for them, and go from there. Trying to prove that they weren't your fault is only going to keep the problem dragging out longer and longer.
Some people might say that if you've got nothing to hide then there's no reason not to show your partner your texts, but by God that's YOUR phone and those are YOUR texts and you have a right to privacy. If you DO have something to hide, we can't really help you, but if you aren't doing anything wrong and simply don't want to show your partner your texts, that's your right.
The real issue is that your partner doesn't have enough trust in you. If there's nothing wrong, then your significant other shouldn't be suspicious of your text messages. The real issue is that they are demanding to see your texts. Your natural tendency might be to show them the texts because they've made you feel guilty, but don't stand for that. Nobody should try and control their partner through guilt, intimidation, and fear. If they want to treat you like that, it's their problem. You can come out of it the better man/woman by taking a stand and not bowing to their tantrums. It's better for your self worth in the long run.
Ok, the relationship didn't work out. You couldn't see eye to eye, and your partner of multiple months/years has stone-cold dumped you. Do you beg for them to take you back? Stalk their Facebook page mercilessly? Stand outside their window at night holding a boom-box aloft your head? Maybe your relationship is worth salvaging at some point, but if not then you should just let it go. There's nothing worse than letting a dead relationship fester in your heart and mind. It grows into resentment, anger, and distrust. It can ultimately end up affecting your future relationships in negative ways.
It's better to move on. That's not to say that you'll feel fine; you'll probably be upset. But go out, do things, hang out with new people. Take up a hobby or read a really big book you've always been meaning to get to. Go skydiving. Do anything to take your mind off of your break up and move on. Maybe your partner will come around and give you a call, or maybe they won't. Either way, you'll be equipped to handle it and move forward with your life.
There's always a chance that a past relationship that went south can come back together and be stronger, but chances are you broke up for a reason. Just because you feel the constant desire to hook back up with them, doesn't mean that you are right for each other. Sometimes, people just hold onto relationships from their past because they feel familiar and safe. If you find yourself constantly being off and on with a person, you should probably consider cutting off contact with them.
Continuing to come back to a past relationship stunts your forward growth. It keeps you from meeting new people and forming new relationships. It prevents you from moving on emotionally or psychologically. Typically, it's just a big waste of time. You need to really assess the situation and decide for yourself whether you think this relationship is ever going to really go anywhere, or if you're just treading water. If you don't feel confident that the relationship can last, cut it off for good.