Dating tips from the experts
Meeting new people can be exciting. You can make new friends. You can even find love. But sometimes new relationships do not work. You can feel hurt or sad. It can also be hard to know what to do next. Experts say you need to think carefully about what happened. This can help you learn from the experience.
Posted by: Susan Frankel, on 14/04/10
Meeting new people can be very exciting
Meeting new people can be very exciting. It can lead to romance and new friendship. But sometimes new relationships are not successful. It is not uncommon to feel hurt or sad. It can also be hard to know what to do next.
Fortunately, relationship experts have plenty of advice. DiVine spoke to two relationship experts. They provide tips for recovering after a dating disaster and moving on with your life.
Our experts say the first thing to do is think carefully about what happened. They say it is helpful to understand what happened. Then you should have less chance of repeating any mistakes.
Hilary Ash is a Melbourne-based social worker and relationships counsellor. Mrs Ash recommends people
stop and take stock after a failed relationship.
It will help if you can acknowledge who you are and think about your part in what happened, she says.
Give yourself time to mourn. Allow yourself to know that it was painful. And remember it wasn’t all your fault.
If you are in a relationship with problems, Mrs Ash says
you have to ask yourself what isn't working.
Expecting that essential, initial ‘chemistry hit’ to last forever is unrealistic. To keep a relationship alive, treat it like a plant that needs food and water.
Mrs Ash recommends telling your partner what you want.
Doing that will not wreck the romance, she says.
On the contrary. It can be very romantic for couples to be vulnerable and frank.
Relationships help us learn about ourselves according to Mrs Ash. But she says a new relationship will not fix a failed one.
Return to dating
John Aiken is an author, psychologist and relationship expert with a new online dating site. Mr Aiken encourages people to return to dating when a relationship hasn't worked out. But he agrees that it's important to look at what didn't work and put it into perspective.
If you find yourself consumed by a past dating disaster and you can't function, then give it a break, says Mr Aiken.
When you are feeling more confident (you can) jump back online.
Mr Aiken says online dating is a great way to meet new people and move on after a bad experience.
However, after getting to know someone online a bit, it is important to meet, he says.
(Meeting) face-to-face will tell you whether there is a spark of physical attraction, and if someone is truthful.
Common dating mistakes
Mr Aiken says common dating mistakes include:
- Ruling people out too early because they don’t meet your long list of criteria
- Trying to change people
- Suffocating someone with rules and orders
- Being so hung up on a past relationship that you are not available to commit.
Everyone is different, says Mr Aiken.
People have their own life experiences. The issue is not ‘how can I change them?’ but ‘do we fit?’ Can I embrace them and them me?
You can also be too nice and willing to please. If you give yourself away entirely, and get taken for granted, the partner gets bored and moves on.
Take a step back
If you blame yourself for problems in your last relationship, Mr Aiken suggests trying to get some perspective.
Ask yourself: What advice would I give my best friend if they were thinking this way? By taking a step back you can be more objective.
When you are ready to try dating again, Mr Aitken says a good way to “relaunch yourself” is updating your online profile.
Your best friend or someone (else) you trust can view your bio (profile) with fresh eyes, and adjust it. Ask for suggestions.
What are some of the dating lessons you have learned? Let us know in the comments section below.
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