Dating Is A Disaster But The Longer You’re Single, The Smarter You Get

Dating in your 20s is fun, fresh and exciting. There’s a lot less pressure to find a husband and the main focus is just on having fun and enjoying wherever the wild ride may lead you. You get your heart broken a few times, dust off the pieces and move on to your next adventure, optimistic about what lies ahead. When you get into your 30s, a lot of stuff changes pretty quickly. It’s no longer a free-for-all because you start to take finding love more seriously. Here’s the undeniable truth about how dating changes in your 30s:

  1. You stop putting so much weight on material things. You’re over the phase of striving for a partner who has a flashy car, expensive clothes and the means to spoil you because a) you’re a grown woman and b) you’ve gotten a taste of what those guys can be like and most of the time it’s not worth it. You just want someone who has a good head on their shoulders and a genuine heart.
  2. You care a lot less about looks. You stop giving a crap about dating the guy that looks like he just rolled off the pages of a Calvin Klein ad and you start to look at those average Joes with the great sense of humor and kind-hearted nature in a new light. As cliche as it sounds, you realize that while attraction is important, it’s not about the outside — it’s the inside that counts.
  3. You realize the importance of a partner who has stability. Those sexy AF guys who didn’t have a job and couldn’t cook anything other than Chef-Boyardee are a thing of the past. Now, you value a guy based on how well he’s navigating the challenges of adulting, which include paying his bills on time, having a decent roof over his head and taking care of his physical and emotional health.
  4. Crap starts to get real. You’re no longer dating just for the hell of it because you realize that at any point in time, you could find yourself meeting the person you’ll spend the rest of your life with. While that’s an exciting feeling, it’s also scary AF. It’s not just about spending time with someone who’s good for now; your time is valuable and you want to focus the energy you have on someone who’s actually potentially a life-long partner.
  5. You become intolerant of time wasters and game players. You’re totally over guys who play mind games or waste your time with dancing around their feelings and avoiding any sense of commitment. You’re a grown woman with a life of your own, so if someone doesn’t step up in a real way, you move on because you have better stuff to do.
  6. Most of the time, you’d rather stay at home in your pajamas than date at all. Sometimes, the dating scene in your 30s can become completely draining and there are an abundance of weekends where chilling out in your PJs with a greasy pizza or a home-cooked meal (because you can make those amazingly well now) and a book or movie is infinitely better than going on yet another horrible date.
  7. You don’t put up with BS behavior anymore — you know better. If someone isn’t treating you right or disrespects you in any way, you know better than to put up with it. When you get to your 30s, you’re no longer interested in “hearing them out” when you find the person you’re dating tongue mauling some other woman at a bar — and if a guy talks down to you, you remove yourself from his life ASAP. You love yourself enough to know that you deserve way better.
  8. Divorcees and single parents are a reality among options. When you were younger, you had reserves about what kind of person you wanted. As you’ve gotten older, you realize some things can’t be helped. In your 30s, you’ll meet single guys who have a failed marriage behind them or are living the lifestyle of a single parent looking for love. Don’t rule them out — they know how to care for another human and they’re no strangers to the hard work that comes with building a life with someone.
  9. Online dating sucks the life out of you. Online dating as an adult is mostly like punching yourself in the face multiple times. You hate it, you know it’s aggravating but somehow you keep doing it. That’s just the way it goes.
  10. You get exhausted AF from the struggle to find love. Dating in your 30s is a truly challenging experience unless you’re lucky and escaped the hell of it early on. For those of us still navigating the playing field, there are some positives too. Even though it’s a frustrating and sometimes deflating process, you’ve taught yourself resilience and how to truly rely on yourself in a way that no other chapter of your life teach you. Dating in your 30s is a completely new ballgame and even if it’s harder and even if you’re still alone, you’re pretty amazing for learning the life lessons you’ve learned here. Now, pour yourself a celebratory bottle of wine and celebrate in your PJs. You’ve earned it.