Like most women, I’ve had quite a few not-so-good dating experiences in my lifetime — actually, a lot.
This one guy I dated wound up being a two-timing pathological liar, and another turned out to be a misogynistic control freak. Oh, and let’s not forget the one who took me to his prom to be his arm candy and then disappeared the moment he realized I wasn’t giving him any of my ‘goodies.’ Then there was the questionable one who had one too many feminine tendencies, the bug-a-boo who overcompensated way too much to win my affection, and the extremely nonchalant one with the smart mouth — I actually really liked that one, but could never figure out why. *shrugs*
But I’ll admit that while many of the so-called “men” I’ve dated needed some serious work, I obviously needed a bit of fixing up myself. After all, I was the one who was attracting these crazies, and you know what they say… You are who you attract.
With that being said, I had to do some serious soul searching before finally coming to grips with some things. So here’s what I discovered:
- I’m crazy-ish. Not the kind of crazy that would go on a killing spree or watch you while you’re sleeping, but the dramatic, emotional kind of crazy that usually makes an appearance when I feel like I’m being played. In other words, I have a tendency to wear my heart on my sleeve, which hasn’t worked well for me in my previous relationships. And no, I have never keyed anyone’s car, busted anyone’s windows and/or slashed anyone’s tires, just in case you’re wondering…I’m not go-to-jail crazy.
- I’m extremely over-analytical. I question, think and rethink everything until I finally find the answer I’ve been searching for (this is also a significant contributor towards me being crazy-ish).
- I have rather aggressive tendencies. When I want something, I go for it until I get it. This has caused conflicts in previous — and present — relationships.
- I’m super sensitive. I cry about pretty much everything. This ties back into #1 as well.
- I can be very argumentative/defensive. And I don’t back down, especially if it’s something I truly stand for. Yeah, it can get pretty ugly.
- I’m a sucker for love. I’m probably one of the most romantic people you’ll ever meet. I love romance movies and novels, and I love to watch random people get engaged on YouTube — don’t judge me.
So by now, you’re probably thinking, “Wow, this girl sounds like a total nut job.” Trust me — it seems a lot worse when it’s in writing (try sitting down and writing out a list of your own flaws and you’ll see exactly what I mean). But in all honesty, I had to really dig deep to figure out why I kept finding myself in these sucky dating situations, and the above list was what I’ve come up with. I realized that while many of the guys I dated previously were actually a hot mess, I wasn’t the victim — I was the common denominator. My very own shortcomings contributed to the situations I found myself in over and over again, so it was up to me to make a change.
When my current boyfriend Jon and I first started dating over a year ago, I decided that I was going to do things differently with him. I was going to play things cool, go with the flow and really take the time to figure him out before I made a concrete decision on whether or not I wanted to move forward with him. I was going to be myself, but I was also going to approach and handle certain situations differently than I had done in the past. And here we are. 🙂 Of course, our relationship hasn’t been all roses and daffodils — we’ve argued, broken up and gotten back together — but we’ve acknowledged areas that we can both improve upon and are working on those things together, as well as individually. Bottom line is there’s always room for growth, and I definitely see that in my current relationship.
Truth be told, that list I wrote out is still 100% accurate to this day, but I have grown in a lot of ways and am still a work in progress. The good thing is, since I’ve made myself aware of my own shortcomings, I am continuously praying and making a conscious effort to control and/or alter them not only when it comes to dating, but with my family and friends as well.
We all need work, so what are some areas you feel you need to improve in? Share your thoughts! 🙂