I’m dashing off this post because I just read Sara Eisemann’s MatchQuest column in this week’s Family First, and the question and answer were so phenomenally on-target, I had to share. (The entire text is available through the above link.)
I know that most of what I talk about on this blog is not actual dating or the process of developing relationships in shidduchim (well, there was this). My posts are typically about living a full life where you are as a single, and being and becoming the greatest you can be. But let’s acknowledge the reality behind the screen: in between pesto sandwiches, birthday parties, and ballet lessons, there’s a twenty-something-year-old girl in the parsha. And that means dating. And that means decisions. And that means a lot of emotional energy. That means meeting shadchanim. And networking, and telling people what I’m looking for, and talking to dating coaches, and soul-searching, and starting over.
And that can all get tiring. And make it ever-more challenging to truly give and share of myself with someone else. Because it’s normal to resist being vulnerable, especially after a time. But a while ago, one of my friends said something very wise that brought me up short. I had gone out several times with a boy and I didn’t know what to do to help the relationship along. Without missing a beat, she told me, “Bake him chocolate chip cookies.” I was like, “Noooo.” She looked at me and said, “You know, that doesn’t say something about him but that does say something about you.” And she was right. Because I was just scared of putting myself out there, and I realized that that kind of bravery was something to work on. That ability to take an emotional risk, and be at peace with the possibility that it might lead to a detour, not a destination.
So I’d like to know what helps you open up on a date. Do you like those dating games? (Personally, I have a hard time with the rat-a-tat-tat nature of those games). Have you ever seen this list of questions? What other advice can you share with the rest of us?
Have a great Shabbos!