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message 1: by Gayle (new)

Gayle Kimball (gaylekimball) Thoughts about dating from a newly single Gen X man in response to what he would add to my Ask Dr. Gayle advice column.

Q: I’m starting to date seriously what should I look for in a partner?
GK: If you’re looking for a man, avoid one who had either a controlling mother or one who did everything for him. Some men tell me they avoid especially beautiful women because they get used to being served. In either sex, look for a best friend who is interesting to talk with and you respect, as well as being attractive to you. We tend to attract the familiar, so think about the relationship patterns you experienced growing up and decide what you want to repeat and what you want to do differently.
A man's viewpoint on dating:

I decided last night I fall in love way to quickly way to easily. I also decided I am looking for Divine unconditional love in the flesh and I don't know if it is possible. So many people are socially conditioned to be a princess/player.

As you said, I would definitely identify what went wrong last relationship, identify what the person doesn't want in the future, what a person wants in the future, make a list, tell the universe what you want. Co-create. As we are co-create our relationships so do they also mirror our weaknesses. I think we as a culture should look at the attachment side of love, and learn to watch it come into our lives, be there and then leave, without attachment. For surely all love is a fire that dwindles into lukewarm coals and then fades. Going into a relationship thinking we aren't going to get hurt or work is naive. Unless one is very wise. Like Day and night, thought and stillness, man and women, life and death, love comes and goes. I think parental upbringing, you hit it on the head. The married women who like me, which I'm pretty sure is over (god I dodged that bullet for now, Thanks!)
I think we as Americans need to focus more on self-love, or I do, and be less reliant on others to bring us as humans happiness. Eventually looking to a mate to provide all sources of happiness is impossible. Maybe it’s just my age.
A person can either throw themselves into a heated passionate relationship and feel everything with an open heart and maybe get burned or be logical, slow, step by step cautious.
I guess from my life, a good relationship, it was all about effortlessness. For years with my ex the weeks flew by, years flew by, it was easy. Being myself, being with her was simple and joyful. Still when I talk to her I hang up the phone and we just talked for 20 minutes easily. If a person isn’t aligned with the self, a person can't be aligned with anyone else. And it has to be strong, the self-alignment. Work on creating conditions of self-love, and those will be attractive to others. Commit to inner peace as the main goal. When we are looking for love, beware of fear that is the opposite of love, and will only hold us back. Our society too also has a skewed point of view, what type of love, unconditional, sexual, most people think of love as all about themselves, but really, love is wanting the best for someone else, relationship love is the dance of giving and taking, of love. Not giving and taking of power. Love, tricky thing. The Dali lama has tons of love, for everyone, but no interpersonal relationship. Someone who wants to get back into dating... be playful, have fun, for myself don't give away my heart so easily.
Yes I would go with the patterns of each relationship, they all tell us a lot about ourselves. To return to a love life, dating, one should be ready to love unconditionally and expect nothing in return. There are lots of guided meditations for new lovers. "Someone out there is waiting to meet you, you just have to allow them to meet you” Do a ritual, put all your love into the ritual, all your hopes and expectations, and let it go. Honestly if I new this stuff, I would have a really happy relationship right now. But also, getting back to dating, it seems, is harder once the exposure to potential mates is reduced, such as college, is over. Its easy to meet many possible dates when a person is young and in school. And bars... nah. Need to find a lover inline with the lifestyle of a person. Like to rock climb, go to a rock-climbing club. Do lots of self-care; feel how good it feels to look beautiful. Embrace the whole experience of getting ready to date.
Ok here’s the big problem I have with the dating pool. Games. I say this and leave it alone, if a person likes someone, tell him or her! There's so many games, women can't tell a man they like them cause that’s too forward, they have to get him to say it, and then when the man says it he calls and women can't answer for three days or else they appear needy and then no sex on the first date because what ever. Most young women have a standard protocol to screen out all the men out there. All these magazines pump this stuff out and I honestly rarely have any idea if a girl likes me because they don't say it and act aloof. And guys have no clue what they want vs. need.
I could go on all day. Romantic love--travel. I think drastically changing a person's routine stirs up the cosmic dust. Move to a new town. If a person has been doing the same routine for years they are entrenched in a vibrational fortress. If there were a formula for attracting and keeping a never-ending undying love between couples that was constantly passionate... live and learn, balance. Love is constantly morphing, recycling, undying, reemerging. I feel like every love I've had is the same spirit passing through a different person, upgrading usually. hopefully.

And finally for myself a one-sentence quote from Led Zeppelin that is my ideal go to for relationships. "Some people live and some people die by the wicked ways of love, I just keep on rolling along with the grace of the lord up above."


message 2: by Aglaea (new)

Aglaea | 987 comments Hmm. I was honest and didn't beat around the bush. My openness was too much to handle, or so I hear.

I was expecting not a constantly smooth walk in the park. I have no idea of what calm waters he expected, but I sure managed not to fill his criteria of no difficult topics discussed, no conflicts arising. I should have shut my mouth and talked about safe stuff like the weather apparently. Only we had a scare due to heavy miscommunication, I thought I might have been pregnant, and so we had *that* talk after a short time of knowing each other. So that was one of the final nails in the coffin. Maybe I did something else, too, have no idea. He just quit talking one day, and in text let me know he was done with me.

Relationships take lots of work and kids/abortion is just about the worst talk to have. We survived it with minor scratches and I thought we did gloriously under the circumstances. We talked like mature responsible adults about it, but yeah. Done.

I have opinions. You people have seen it by now. I will express them when asked, and I like to share thoughts, hear of others's thoughts and dreams. I won't hide who I am, in bad and good, in strength and weakness. I'm just me, and I'm looking for a soul mate no less. Maybe I'm asking for a man who doesn't exist. Maybe I'm too much. I don't know anymore.

All I know is love is no birds chirping and unicorns and rainbows, but it is dirty laundry and sagging boobs and the occasional romantic gesture. It is a hug and a kiss after an exhausting day. It is loyalty and generosity and honesty and curiosity and kindness and respect. It is lifting the other up, having their back. It is sharing moments and holding hands. It is disagreements and agreements. It is making mistakes and forgiveness. It is presence and connection. It is being best friends. It is legacy and growing old together.

Does that even exist?


message 3: by Gayle (new)

Gayle Kimball (gaylekimball) I interviewed egalitarian couples for 50/50 Marriage and 50/50 Parenting books and they showed good relationships can last. They pointed out that they experienced hard times when they didn't much like each other, especially after having a baby fatigue. They realized they had to work at romance, like going on a little trip or creating romantic scenes.


message 4: by Gayle (new)

Gayle Kimball (gaylekimball) Another aspect of dating is social media. Nancy Jo Sales reported on her interviews with more than 200 teenage girls in the US. For the first time in history girls of various classes and backgrounds are doing the same activity although they told her they were hurt by the frequent cyber bullying, sexual harassment, request for nude photos, and critical judgments of their photographs. Sales blamed the “hypersexualization” of girls on availability of online pornography. She concluded that, “Now more than ever, girls need feminism” and its critical tools to understand the socialization of girls in a digital age.


message 5: by Aglaea (new)

Aglaea | 987 comments Lol, I don't do selfies. But I'd love to do small things that keep everyday romance alive. Maybe a small note or some task done that he was supposed to do or such.

It is more difficult not to like one's partner(s) when one keeps the flame actively alive, or at least more difficult to stay mad for long times. I guess my point is that it is important to realise that we will "win some and lose some" in the name of compromise, but that hopefully the result as a couple will be more than what the individuals would achieve. Compromise, on the other hand, is also easier when we feel the connection deeply.

I also hate nagging and passive-aggressive behaviour. Speak up or let it go, but the constant bitter crap is low.

I realise I venture into partnership that is established already, but the foundation is created during dating, courtship or whatever you want to call it. Set rules and boundaries that you think you will want to keep for the rest of your life, rather than play idiotic games that will backfire due to being impossible in their inconsistency to maintain.

(P.S. I abhor "dating rules". Only two people can have their own set of rules on what will work for them.)


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