5 ways to support friends – and be supported – through dating

Dating can be hard but one of the best bits, in my opinion, is sharing the ups and downs with other single friends. It makes the whole process more fun, less lonely and it keeps you accountable. Being able to support friends and be supported is a gift. It can be challenging however when you’re not going through the same ups and downs at the same time. How do we enjoy the journey together – celebrating, sympathising and everything in between - when everyone’s journey is different? How do you grow deeper and healthier friendships as you share your dating experiences?

5 ways to support friends – and be supported – through dating

Sharing is caring

My best friend went on a first date last week. On the train home she reported to the Girl Chat on WhatsApp, and the messages came flying in. What did she wear? What did they talk about? What did his pancake order suggest about his personality? Does she want to see him again?

I love these discussions. If the date went well, you get to share in their excitement and your friendship deepens. If it was disappointing, they have the chance to process the date and what they’re feeling, and your friendship deepens. Proactively caring also models how to support friends well in the future.

You may not be an external processor, but sharing your dating journey with one or two others is so important. One friend of mine wouldn’t have gone on a second date with her now-husband if her friends hadn’t encouraged her to keep an open mind. Getting another person’s perspective can be transformational, but make sure it’s someone you trust, who knows you and shares your values.

Accountability

5 ways to support friends and be supportedI spent a good four years getting my heart broken because I was consistently looking for the wrong type of guy. That all changed one day when a close friend said something very simple that blew my mind: “Beth, what you really need is a man who’s kind.”

As strange as it seems, I’d never considered kindness as something to look for in a potential partner. This led to a really honest conversation about non-negotiables. Now, when I’m getting to know someone she’ll ask me whether I’ve seen these traits in them.

Is he kind to people around him? What’s his relationship with God like? Did he make me laugh? We don’t expect to know the answers straight away, but having someone to discuss with who knows me and will challenge me, has made dating so much easier. I know that I’m not alone in it.

Dealing with envy

Last year a friend went through a very traumatic breakup. She was devastated and I went into full-on ‘support friends’ mode. I sent her pick-me-up texts, prayed for her, encouraged her that she might meet someone more worthy of her time.

And then she did. 6 months later. Of course I was happy for her, wasn’t I? Actually, I was secretly annoyed. She’d only been single for 6 months – I’d been single for years!! Surely it was my turn to meet someone?

At this point you might be wondering why I’m writing a blog on friendship if I’m such a terrible friend… If we’re honest with ourselves we’ve all felt like this at some point. Envy is a natural emotion – what’s important is not to let it take root into bitterness and become something stronger.

Acknowledge it, bring it to God, have a cry or rant if you need to, and ask God to help you let it go. Remind yourself how much you love your friend, and how happy you are for them. The more we choose to celebrate others, the less of a grip those emotions like anger and jealousy have a hold on us.

Lift your head above your own situation

ways to support friends and be supported dating adviceThere will be times like these where you and your single friends are having opposite experiences. We need to actively remind ourselves to look beyond our own circumstances and be there for our friends. If you’re happily seeing someone, remember that friend who might be feeling down and reach out to them.

If everyone except you is loved up, be there for your friends in the same way you’d want them to be there for you. It can help to find one friend who is in a similar situation to confide in, and you’ll have more energy and patience for those in a different position.

Everyone’s journey is different

This point is easy to forget sometimes, but it’s the key to healthy friendships when dating. Your dating journey will not be the same as your friends’. I’ve known people who have joined Christian Connection and met someone in their first week, and others who have met their partner after five years.

Try not to compare yourself to others. Don’t count and compare the number of dates you’ve been on or the amount of rejection you’ve received. It has nothing to do with how worthy or desirable you are. Everyone is unique, and that’s what makes friendships so great! We’re different people walking different paths side by side. Enjoy the journey, and try to have a few laughs along the way.

Source : Christian Connection More   

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He doesn’t want me. Why?

So you’ve met a guy you really like. It’s so rare for you to meet someone that ticks all your boxes and you’d love to have a relationship with him. The only issue is, he doesn’t want you back! Dang. This one sucks but it... The post He doesn’t want me. Why? appeared first on Dating and Other Stories.

He doesn’t want me. Why?

So you’ve met a guy you really like. It’s so rare for you to meet someone that ticks all your boxes and you’d love to have a relationship with him.

The only issue is, he doesn’t want you back!

Dang. This one sucks but it happens all the time and it goes both ways. It’s that age old phenomenon – the guys who actually like you, you’re not attracted to. Meanwhile when you finally find one you like, you discover that he doesn’t like you.

Unfortunately dating is a bit of a minefield and it’s tough to find a scenario where the feelings are completely mutual. It’s a numbers game, so don’t lose hope.

If you’ve found yourself in a case of unrequited love or you’ve been obsessing over a guy you slept with who doesn’t like you back, just remember what you do want.

A guy who looks at you like you’re the love of his life. A guy who brings out the best in you and wants the best for you. Someone who’ll be there for you through thick and thin. When he comes along, you’ll wonder why you’ll be glad those other guys didn’t want you.

Don’t settle for a situation that makes you unhappy, where you don’t feel loved in return. Stop chasing men who are emotionally unavailable or who don’t reciprocate your feelings.

If he says he doesn’t want to be with you, or his actions suggest he doesn’t, it’s time to step back and let that situation go. Focus on yourself and try to meet new people.

Remember, you can’t change his mind. So many women convince themselves that if they just do or say the right things that they’ll convince the guy to be in a relationship with them. Dating simply doesn’t work like that. In fact, the more you try to convince, the more people run away. Nobody wants to feel pressured or manipulated into a relationship.

If anything, walking away and doing your own thing will make you seem more attractive. What would a high-value woman do? She would know who she is and know there’s something better out there.

If you’re grappling to understand why he doesn’t want you, here are some of the most common reasons why:

Reasons he doesn’t want to be with you

He doesn’t want a relationship with anyone

I once wasted a long time hooking up with a guy and when I finally had the “I want a relationship” talk he said “It’s not about you, I just don’t want a relationship with anybody“. If I’d asked this question right at the beginning then I wouldn’t have even let it get to where it was. While he should have been a lot more forthcoming about that instead of stringing me along, sometimes you just have to ask the right questions straight off the bat.

For those of us spending our lives looking for the right relationship, it can be baffling that there are people out there who simply don’t want a relationship. With anybody.

There are many reasons why a guy might not want a relationship at all. Perhaps they just enjoy their freedom and don’t want to have to answer to anybody. Maybe they want to work on bettering themselves, whether that’s advancing their career, growing their income or just working on their own issues. Some people can see relationships as a distraction from their true path.

Some guys have had bad relationships in the past and they don’t want a repeat of the last one. Perhaps their ex was controlling and never gave them any space. They’ve become jaded and think of having a significant other as a burden.

Men who are divorced sometimes don’t want to get into another relationship because of financial reasons. If the wife for half their assets in a divorce, they may not want to go through it all again with another woman.

Whatever the case may be, if a man doesn’t want a relationship with anyone, don’t try to convince him otherwise. A guy needs to choose to take the risk.

You aren’t a match

Some people bring out the best in each other and some people bring out the worst in each other. Sometimes men are just much more rational at examining compatibility. They start with the sex and the chemistry and as they start to become a little more attached they then ask themselves, “Do I have the same values as this person? Can I see myself being with them indefinitely?”

You may both be great people but the question is, are you compatible with each other?

If you regularly have fights or bicker over little things, he may decide you guys just aren’t going to be compatible in the long run. Even if you don’t fight, there could be all sorts of reasons why he might think you’ll be incompatible. These could include:

  • Spending habits – one of you might spend, while the other is frugal
  • Eating habits – perhaps one of you is vegetarian and the other isn’t. Or maybe one of you likes to eat out all the time and the other would prefer to eat in
  • Different cultures – sometimes cultural/family differences can feel to great
  • Cleanliness – maybe one of you is messy, while the other is ultra tidy
  • Partying/drinking habits – one of you drinks regularly, while the other doesn’t
  • Intelligence – perhaps there’s a lack of intellectual conversation between the two of you
  • Communication styles – one of you is direct and assertive, while the other is passive
  • Goals – maybe one of you wants a house in the suburbs while the other would rather have the city lifestyle

There are aspects of your personality he doesn’t like

Are you the type of person who gets possessive and/or jealous when you’re dating someone? Do you complain a lot instead of having a glass-half-full mentality? Or are you terribly insecure and obsess over every little thing that the guy does or says?

You may just have one or two personality traits that the guy doesn’t like. If you’ve been dumped a lot in the past it’s easy to become insecure about relationships and worry that things will end before they’ve even got off the ground.

Unfortunately, even if you don’t talk about your insecurities, guys can also just sometimes sense them. They can feel that you’re overly invested and the burden of being responsible for your happiness can feel too much for them.

Alternatively, it could be something else. Maybe you’re quite loud and confident he’d prefer someone more calm and gentle. Whatever the case may be, just know that it doesn’t mean you’re not good enough. You may not be good enough for him, but you’ll be good enough for someone else.

Bad timing

When it comes to men and women, one thing I’ve noticed a lot is the issue of timing. Women are often ready for a relationship at any age. For men, on the other hand, sometimes it’s a case of “great girl, wrong time”. Perhaps he’s trying to focus on his career and build his empire. Perhaps he wants to travel the world or live overseas and doesn’t want to deal with a long distance relationship.

While some may argue that a guy will never let a girl go if she’s “the one”, I’ve heard of many instances where men have later felt sad that they let a great girl go but they just knew they weren’t ready to be in a fully committed relationship at that time.

Sometimes it really is a case of bad timing. But don’t hold on to this idea and wait years for someone that may never, ever decide to have a relationship with you. Believe in divine timing and if it’s meant to happen it will happen. Get on with your life, date other people and don’t put all your hopes on him coming around in ten years time.

Conclusion

To summarize, do not waste your time on a guy who doesn’t want you. Don’t get lost in the fantasy of what could be. If he tells you he doesn’t want to be with you, believe him. If he tells you he doesn’t want a relationship, believe what he says.

You may be thinking, “He says he doesn’t want to be with me but he still keeps me around. Why?” Well unfortunately, men do this because of access to sex. That’s the bottom line. Sometimes they just want an ego boost, to feel loved and wanted.

Remember: the actions and the words have to match. That means he has to be spending time with you. He also needs to say he wants to be with you too.

The more time you spend chasing a guy who’s not into you, the more it will eventually erode your self esteem. Remember all your good qualities and know the right guy will appreciate all those things about you. He will like you for who you are and you won’t have to contort yourself into something you’re not.

Don’t fall into the trap of believing that he’s the only one out there for you. How many times have you had a breakup and thought you’ll never find love again, only to meet someone new a few months later? There are lots of men out there who would be willing to have a relationship if the right girl came along. So make sure you are getting out and about as much as possible.

Expand your friend network, say yes to socializing, take up hobbies or even move into a new apartment building…all these things can help you find love when you least expect it.

The post He doesn’t want me. Why? appeared first on Dating and Other Stories.

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