So, I’m watching The Bachelorette a few weeks ago, and in this particular episode Desiree is crying- a lot. I watch as Brooks breaks Desiree’s heart, for so much of the world to see. And I think, “Why is dating so hard?” Even when Desiree has 25 hand-picked dates set up for her, something still doesn’t go as planned.
Of course, it is reality television. But Desiree’s break up with Brooks is my story, or your story, just reflected on the television screen: Girl meets boy. Girl falls in love with boy. Boy breaks girl’s heart. No matter who happens to be the dumper or dumpee, someone gets hurt.
Again, why is it so hard? Does it have to be? Some of us claim that dating is just common sense, if it is, why do so many of us seem to lack that special kind of common sense? What’s some advice that might make dating easier and our hearts hurt a little less? I don’t claim to have any of the answers (if I did, I probably wouldn’t be single) so I asked different people what they thought might be a secret to dating.
“Never, never, never settle for less than what you want or deserve-never.”
-My grandmother (and one time woman about town)
“Don’t go to places that aren’t your style and expect to find the one. If you’re a stay at home type, don’t expect to find the love your life at a club on Saturday. Dress so you look great, not so you capture attention. Accentuating your best features will win over wearing the least amount of clothing.”
-My best friend (who has great game)
“Don’t be afraid of someone saying ‘no.’”
-My good guy friend (who also has great game)
“Just being yourself. The person you’re dating should accept you, for who you are. There’s really no secret when it comes to being yourself. From personal experience, I always stayed true to myself. If the person liked me (like my husband) then it was meant to be, if not, I would never change for someone else.”
-The newlywed (and not the annoying kind)
“Be authentic and true to your values. The more you try to impress someone, the more likely you are to make a fool out of yourself. If you’re a nerd, be a nerd–someone will be attracted to you no matter what. The more genuine you are, the stronger the connection and the better the relationship.”
-My friend since high school (who I kinda dated once upon a summer)
“Love yourself. Love yourself more than you think you should, more than you think is necessary. It is the only way you’ll trust your own hunches, thoughts and intuitions, whether you’re ending a relationship or falling in love.”
-The perpetually single girl (me)
Ashleigh Achor is a writer, nature-lover and running fanatic that recently graduated from the Miami University of Ohio.