Since I began dating at the age of fifteen, I’ve pretty much always been monogamous and only focused on one person at a time. Then, typically what would happen is I would become attached to this one person, not in a stalker “I have a shrine made out of your hair and skin scrapings in my closet for you” kind of attachment, but in an “I really like this person” sort of way. And even though I was attached, I still had other things going on like work and school, and I would never let this person be “my everything.” Inevitably, the time would come for us to part ways, and I would feel so broken. Although I haven’t had many long-term relationships I’ve only ever had one, and we were eighty miles apart and only dated for a year and a half – it still hurts all the same.
My typical behavior after a break-up, or a parting of ways, is to sulk. I usually get pretty sad because all of the hope I had for this relationship to turn out to be “the one” is now gone and I’m left all alone once more. Then, after about six months or more of not dating, I pretty much sleep with the next person I start dating almost immediately, which isn’t exactly the best way of going about things, I admit. However, this last year after starting to date someone who turned out to be a total d-bag, instead of sulking, I chose to start dating almost immediately. I got back on Tinder and found people to go on dates with the very next week, determined not to let this guy bring me down. I’ll write more about this specific guy in another post.
Hopefully, you can take what I’ve learned from becoming a serial dater and apply it to your life, or not, whatever you choose – it’s your life.
Cushion for the Pushin’
It really does cushion the blow. Before this I had always believed that my heart needed time to heal. Although a noble thought, I would usually end up getting depressed and stop doing the things that make me happy, like working out, eating healthy, spending time with friends, etcetera. Even though I would usually snap out of that relatively quickly – most of my “relationships” haven’t been for longer than three months, so it really doesn’t make sense to sulk for more than a week or so – still, sulking for even a week after some guy turns out to be a d-bag is no way to live. Beginning to date so soon after things ended with someone you liked gets you back out and takes your mind off of things and onto better things!
It shows that there are more fish in the sea. Do you remember that movie, “He’s Just Not That Into You,” when Justin Long was saying how if some girl doesn’t like him that it’s okay because he can go find a better one that probably has a bigger rack? Well, this is the same thing — if a guy treats you badly and you break up with him, or he breaks up with you, or however, it went down, getting back out there shortly after that does show you that there are more guys out there. And, the sooner you get out there, the sooner you can see that this other guy probably wasn’t “the one.” By meeting other people, you’re able to expose his flaws and find people with qualities you also like — this opens up your mind about who “the one” for you might be, and allows you to not put this guy up on a pedestal.
Being a serial dater teaches you to be unapologetically you, in case you weren’t already that way. When you have access to so many guys, most of whom are only trying to get into your pants, you stop giving a fuck. You start to go out on dates with barely any makeup on, your hair undone, and just skinny jeans and a tank top, because seriously, who gives a fuck!? If they don’t like you like that, then they’re not going to like you when you roll out of bed in the morning. If they can’t hang with the fact that you’re a boss and have shit going on, bye Felicia! Seriously – no one has time for that, especially a woman in her thirties. Becoming a serial dater teaches you not to apologize for who you are. Eventually, the right person will come your way, and you’ll know it when it happens.
It Keeps You Busy
If you ever need to get your mind off of something, especially someone you just ended things with, this is definitely a way to do it. I mean, so yeah, you’re technically still on a quest of finding your person, but at least you’re insanely busy. Plus, it makes you that much more desirable to the opposite sex (or same sex, whatever) when you’re busy and only has one or two spots in the week when you can meet up. Plus, if one of those is lunches, that’s all the better – that shows them that you’re interested in getting to know them as opposed to getting drunk and sleeping together. And, if you’re also juggling a career and school as well as friends and “you time” then your schedule is pretty full. Just make sure that you are scheduling time with your girls and for yourself. No one wants to be with someone who makes everything about them. Well, I suppose some guys do, but they’re usually pretty controlling and scary.
Just Because You Can Doesn’t Mean You Should
Finally, just because you can get laid and sleep with the entire town after a man fucks you over, doesn’t mean that you should. That doesn’t give you a “one up,” and kind of makes you slutty. That being said, if sex with the ex-person was extremely unsatisfactory or he belittled you for whatever reason, you do you, girl. Get yours! Just be safe about it. Use that rubber! Most men nowadays don’t want to use condoms, and go and get tested even less, which increases your chances of contracting an STI or STD. If the guy doesn’t want to use a condom, unapologetically order yourself an Uber and get the fuck out of there! This guy clearly doesn’t care about his health and safety, or yours for that matter.
How to Stand up For Yourself
This ties right into that ‘No Fucks’ part. Have standards. Don’t bend. You are in this for you and you alone. You’re not tied or committed to anyone until death do we part yet, so stop bending over backward for someone just because you like them. Make them show you that they’re as much into you as you are to them. Once again, if you’re busy and have a whole pool of potential men at your disposal, don’t allow some guy to try and dick you around. If he’s going to insist that you constantly come to him, or that you pick up the tab (even though you already took the time out of your day to meet him, get ready, drive to him, and picked him up), then drop his ass. Be sweet about it – thank him for his time, and then move on. If he asks to meet up again, say something along the lines of, “No thank you. I don’t think we’re a good match. I wish you the best of luck though!” And then block him if he becomes rude.
Qualities that You Like
Serial dating allows you to see the qualities of a person that you like – and don’t like. If a guy is really into you, but can never make time for you, or only once or twice a month, will that satisfy you? What about if a guy is really cute and funny but is broke almost all of the time, and you end up having to pay for all of the dates? Dating helps you to get to know yourself! Can you tolerate being with a smoker, or would you consider that settling? Make a list of all the things that are important to you, and you should probably apply most of those to a potential mate. For instance, I’m really into healthy eating and working out, so any guy that I date must also have those qualities to be classified as long-term potential. Let’s be real here; I’m not going to be the owner of a holistic health spa and married to a man who eats and McDonald’s every day of the week. Gross. Living a healthy lifestyle is important to me, and it should be really important to him, too.
All-in-all, I feel that becoming a serial dater gave me perspective. Does this mean that I’m always going to be a serial dater, no! I’ve taken a hiatus from dating and have been focusing more on my business and growing that, as well as getting a third job. But that doesn’t mean that I’m not putting myself out there! I’m still talking to people and getting to know others; I’m just not focusing on finding an LTR. And you know what? That’s okay. Eventually, the right one will come my way, but until then, I’m going to continue bossing up my life and becoming the person I need to be.
I’d love to hear your stories on serial dating in the comments section!
Rachael has fifteen years of dating experience and has been mostly happily single for the last seven years. In that time, she's dated countless men and has encountered every possible dating situation you can think of, from being stood up, to people who ghost or attempt to guilt you into having sex with them, as well as *many* almost relationships. When she’s not blogging about her dating experiences, you can find her at the gym, cooking healthy meals at home, working on expanding her holistic health spa in Portland, OR, or moonlighting as a cocktail server at a local gentleman's club.