10 Painful Dating Lessons I’ve Learned In The Last Year & You Should Know Too

The guys I’ve dated in the last year have been some of the biggest disappointments of my life. Maybe I’m not picking the right guys or I’m not going about “dating” in the right way—or, maybe dating is just complete and total BS. I still believe in love, but I’ve had to learn some hard lessons to bring me back down to earth when it came to my views on dating and relationships. Here are just a few of them:

It’s All BS. I’m not trying to be super negative, but I do think dating is BS. Nowadays, people can’t just date. Most of them want to play games by acting uninterested and being manipulative because they think that’s the only way to win the game. Why the hell is dating a game?! Yeah, it can be fun, but dating someone shouldn’t be about winning or losing. It should be about finding someone you’re kind of interested in, dating that person, and then breaking up or staying together. Sounds pretty basic to me!

Don’t Date The Guy Who Says He’s Not Looking For Something Serious. We’re all guilty of dating a guy who straight up tells us they don’t want a relationship. Why do we do this? I think it’s because we all want to be the girl who changes that guy’s mind about dating. You know, like in the movies! Well, life isn’t a movie—it’s not even close. Don’t date the guy who tells you he doesn’t want a relationship. He means what he says and you’ll only end up disappointed.

You Shouldn’t Stay Friends With Your Ex. Personally, I don’t think anyone should stay friends with their ex after a breakup. I tried it and it was a complete cluster. Why? Because it’s a lie. Saying you want to stay friends with your ex is the same as saying you’re hoping that acting like his friend will bring the relationship back to where it was. That’s literally the only reason to stay in touch after ending things.

You Should Never Go To His House On The First Date. I have no problem with Netflix and chill, but it doesn’t need to be a thing until way later in the relationship. In my experience, going to a guy’s house to “hang out” on the first date isn’t a good idea because it sets the bar (a very low bar) for the entire relationship. If he doesn’t have to wine and dine you the first time you guys meet up, why would he wine and dine you three months in?

He Shouldn’t Come To Your House Until Date Five. This is for safety purposes! Inviting a guy to your place before you get to really know him can be messy. Let’s say he picks you up for the first date and you realize you don’t like him at all. Now, this guy’s got your address and he’s casually dropping by at his leisure like a low-key stalker. This is clearly an extreme instance, but I can guarantee you it’s happened to at least one person you know.

You Should Always Trust Your Gut. Your gut is always right. If something doesn’t feel right about the guy you’re talking to, it’s because something isn’t right! Instead of ignoring that little voice in your head that’s telling you to grab your stuff and run because he’s no good, listen!

Words And Actions Are Equally Important. A lot of people say actions speak louder than words and while I’m not denying that, I think words are just as important. Dating a guy who constantly holds your hand but never admits to having feelings for you is kind of suspicious, don’t you think? Focusing on actions alone is how people end up thinking they’re in a relationship with someone when in actuality that person is seeing three to five other females.

Don’t Date The Guy Who Says He’s In A Bad Relationship. Realest talk: Don’t even communicate with a guy who’s in a relationship. I mean, you can be friends with him but that’s it. You need to be so freakin’ platonic that people think you’re brother and sister. There’s no reason to flirt and get a little extra friendly with the guy who’s in a “bad relationship” because odds are, he’s not at all (and if he is, he should get out of it). He just wants to have his cake and eat it too.

You Shouldn’t Sleep With Your Ex. You shouldn’t hang out with your ex, you shouldn’t text your ex, and you definitely shouldn’t sleep with your ex. You might not be ready for the relationship to be over but unfortunately, it is. Sleeping with him in an attempt to win him back isn’t going to work. Even if it did, is that how you want to get a guy? (No judgment, just asking.)

You Should Never Hook Up With Someone Your Friend Hooked Up With. Honestly, there’s really no reason for this to happen. I don’t care how long ago it was or how serious the relationship was. I don’t even care if your friend tells you to do it. Don’t. It’ll only create some unnecessary drama where it doesn’t need to be.

Dating Won’t Make You Happy. Dating can bring you a lot of joy. It can help you step outside your comfort zone and it can help you improve to be your best self—but that’s all completely dependent on the person you’re dating. If he’s soulmate potential, he might bring out your best qualities; if he’s not, you’re not going to be happier than if you were single. In fact, you might be happier being single. Be careful about who you date because dating someone just to say you’re in a relationship can do more harm than good.

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