I went out with a man tonight for coffee. It was a first meeting from getting acquainted on an online site. He was nice enough, cute enough, was fifty years old, but had never been in a long-term relationship in his entire life. The longest time he had ever spent with someone was six months. He also had never lived with someone. Those final qualities scared me off from having another date.
I asked him, “Why don’t you think you have ever had a long-term relationship?”
He told me, “I just haven’t found the right person.”
I wondered, have you just not found the right person or are you impossible to be around for longer than six months? I’m sorry for saying that or for feeling it. He never said anything but kind and nice things the entire time I spoke with him. But I left feeling something strange: Who is luckier? Him for never having met the right person? Or me, who has found love for a long period of time and had lost it?
I have to be honest, since my last break-up I have had the kinds of thoughts I teach clients to resist and reframe. I feel like I’m never going to find the person who will fit like a glove, who will be my friend and intimate partner, who will want to stay with me for the good times and the bad.
The truth is that when someone leaves you or you go through a traumatic break up, you actually have a time when you feel like you are the one responsible, even if it wasn’t your fault. I honestly did everything I could to be the right person for my last partner. I would have gone to counseling. I would have bought anything I needed to make him feel comfortable. I did give up a lot of my likes to appease him and spend time with him doing the things he enjoyed. But nothing was enough. It left me feeling like “I” wasn’t enough.
This is a normal feeling to experience when you go through a break up. Everyone goes through this, expect, perhaps, a narcissist. I did what I needed to do to break the cycle of bad thinking. I went out last weekend, even though I hate bars and loud, crowded places. I actually had a great time with some friends. I had a couple people become interested. I felt like I kind of got my swagger back, which I needed desperately. Staying at home with your mother night after night and watching hours of television while feeding your face is not what you want for the rest of your life.
I have met a couple nice guys since my ex and I broke up, but I’m not sure if any one of them is exactly right for me. And, it seems, the ones I like the best are the ones who are either unavailable or not as interested as I.
As a friend just recently told me: It is never about attracting the right person, it is about the timing of finding the right person at the right moment, when you are both in the same place of wanting to settle into a secure relationship.
So, what do you do when you are feeling low about not having found the right person?
You do the same thing you would do if you didn’t have a job. You make a resume of all your good traits. If you have something you need to learn to be more qualified for relationships, you learn to embrace that attribute with a Life Coach or a therapist.
Then you begin to find the places that best suit your level of comfort ability to solicit your goods. For me, and apparently for most of the world, it is the Internet. Online dating seems to be the simplest way to find a person who has the goods to be a proper mate. Places to search are Match.com, PlentyofFish.com, and OkCupid.com.
I can’t recommend too many other places, because the only people I have met who I believe are viable candidates for a significant other, secure mate have been found by a computer-generated percentage of likelihood. I think this is a little sad. I wish I could say that it is easy to meet people in public and at parties, but it just isn’t in this day and age. People want to go online for everything, including intimacy. So, if you really plan to try to get yourself out there, I would recommend online dating. It is the simplest, most direct way to meet people who want to date.
Just be prepared to sift through a sea of many people, before you land on the right one. I have one more thing to tell you, especially women: Don’t hide out online too long just conversing with e-mails and texts. After just a few e-mails, begin to search for a third dimension from the two-dimensional Internet.
I have had many people spend too long never getting to meet a person and become very disappointed when they finally do meet and discover they have spent months dating someone who was more a fantasy than a real person.
Good luck on your search.
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Bo Sebastian is a Hypnotherapist and Life & Health Coach, available for private sessions to QUIT SMOKING, Lose Weight, New Lap-Band Hypnosis for Weight Loss, CHANGE YOUR MIND, CHANGE YOUR LIFE! at 615-400-2334 or www.bosebastian.com.
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