Dating is about getting to know someone. A potential someone special.
While playing the dating game, here are red flags your date may exhibit that should send you running in the opposite direction:
• Focus on the physical aspect of the relationship
• Addictive behaviors (alcohol, spending, girl watching, drugs, pornography, computers, television, movies—anything that controls him and takes the place of God in his life)
• Disrespectful to his mother, sisters, waitress, and other women
• Uncomfortable making eye contact
• Disrespectful of your boundaries (One friend described how her date pushed himself past her to tour every room in her home. She felt violated by his lack of respect.)
• Bulldozes through your “no”
• Places responsibility for his emotions on others (“You made me . . .”)
• Unable to remember blocks of his childhood (This can be a typical survival response to abuse. If it is not faced and dealt with, the behavior comes out sidewise and adversely affects family members.)
These indicators will help you differentiate between a Bozo and a Boaz.
It is perfectly normal for a woman to long for a life’s partner. It is also perfectly normal for you and I to have high standards. To refuse to settle for second best.
Here are some do’s and don’ts for the dating process:
During the get-to-know you process:
- Do see each other in a variety of settings: with friends, family, co-workers.
- Don’t only see each other when you are alone and looking your best on a date.
- Do get to know each other for two years. The first year is the honeymoon period. The second year is often when the masks go down, revealing a more genuine person.
- Don’t pretend you are someone you are not. If you don’t really enjoy the hobbies he does but enjoy being with him, be honest.
- Do ask trusted family and friends what they see in this person.
- Don’t ignore concerns of trusted family and friends. Nor should you make your decision solely based on their advice.
- Do measure your relationship by how much each of you grow in your relationship with God.
- Don’t give up dreams, interests, and relationships with friends and family to be completely devoted to your boyfriend.
- Do remember no one is perfect but never tolerate poor or disrespectful behavior.
I propose that in the process of following your dreams and developing your gifts and talents, you will find fulfillment in pursuing your full potential in Christ. And as a whole and healthy person, you will attract another whole and healthy person. Then the relationship you create will be based, not on need and dependency, but on the assurance that you are together because the foundation is solid.
Coming out of a broken relationship, two things happen. We are often eager to get into another relationship, and people around us are eager for us to get into another relationship.
On a personal level, it feels odd to be unattached. Alone. A single in a couple’s world. If someone found us attractive, it would certainly boost our wounded self-esteem. It would soothe those burning feelings of rejection.
This period of desperately desiring to be in relationship is real and it is powerful. As one woman put it, all men look the same and they all look good.
Those around us want us to find a relationship quickly for two reasons. They believe it will alleviate our pain over the end of this relationship. And it appears to be the answer to solving the awkward issue of getting together and doing things when most folks are a couple of some sort and you and I are definitely single.
It is wonderful to be in love and to be loved. It is important for a single parent to know your motivation as you begin to date. After all, it is no longer just about us. Our decisions affect our children.
A poet looks at the world
the way a man looks at a woman.
After a break-up, when does a single parent begin to date?
Everyone is an example of what to do and what not to do. After watching lots of people frantically shop for another relationship to pop into so they can short-circuit the necessary and beneficial work of healing and becoming a whole person, I recommend the road less traveled.
Get emotionally healthy first. The rule of thumb is that this process requires you to remain single for one year per every four you were married. Don’t date for at least one year. Get comfortable not needing another. Consider raising the children in a focused, balanced, loving single-parent home.
Fresh out of her marriage, a business associate went online to meet someone. “How about you?” she asked. “Found anyone new?”
“Not looking,” I replied. “I’m getting my private pilot’s license.”
Her jaw dropped. “I never thought about doing something like that.”
Look Back: For two years, attend events as a single person. Learn to interact authentically with others. Enjoy being you. One is a whole number.
Move Ahead: What have you always wanted to do? Get your pilot’s license? Dance? Scuba dive? Tour Europe? Cruise Greece? Read the classics? Get a degree? Replace those serviceable curtains you’ve hated for decades? Invite the Lord to be your date and do it.
People travel to wonder at the height of mountains,
at the huge waves of the sea, at the long courses of rivers,
at the vast compass of the ocean, at the circular motion of the stars;
and they pass by themselves without wondering.
This is how 2013 blew in for us. My daughter was sleeping when someone woke her by banging on her door. The apartment building where she and her sister and brother-in-law live was on fire.
Watch the video at this link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q7wg_1MUJtghttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q7wg_1MUJtg
Eight hours of water delivered by firemen from three counties finally extinguished the blaze. Yes, the residents lost everything, yet there were so many protections and blessings from the Lord that those have been the lasting memories.
How has your 2013 begun?
“You can spell “love” a thousand different ways,” said Virginia Reynolds. I go into more detail on this topic in my book, Rediscovering Your Happily Ever After, but for now, here is a list of good habits that have served others:
• Pray together frequently.
• Enjoy regular devotions as a family.
• Encourage and model a personal relationship with the Lord for each family member.
• Use a respectful tone of voice. Children should be accustomed to being spoken to with respect by their parents. We set the standard and model for our children—both for how others should respect them and for how our children should show respect.
• Say yes as often as possible. Be positive and reflect a world of possibility for our children. For those challenging requests, rather than an instantaneous “no,” say, “Let’s see how we can make this happen.”
• Find opportunities to laugh together.
• Keep in touch. Communicate. Give your children the security of knowing the schedule, what to expect in the day, where you are, and how to reach you.
• “Come apart” or you will come apart. Take regular rest and refresh days. Vacations come in all shapes and sizes—from a week away to hot fudge sundaes, a walk, or a jaunt to the park.
Let us know the unique ways you show love in your family. How do you love your children? What tangible acts spell love in your family?
Today is a sucky day – I sucked up an athletic sock and a washcloth into the vacuum. The sock went through fine but I had to retrieve the washcloth. Sort of like taking a bite that is too big to swallow.
Why are dogs so afraid of the vacuum? Maybe he saw what happened to the athletic sock. My granddog weighs 150 pounds and won’t go into a room that has a vacuum even when it is sitting quietly put away. The vacuum, not the dog.
What vacuum adventures have you had? What is the most interesting thing you sucked up?
Easy steps toward your happily ever after. Listen in for my radio interview with Dottie Coffman. We talked about by my book Rediscovering Your Happily Ever After: Moving from hopeless to hopeful for the newly divorced mom. WIMO AM 1300 www.wimoradio.com at 9:00 a.m.and www.moralnation.com at 4:00 p.m.
Whoo hoo! I am totally stoked! My book What To Do When You’re Scared To Death with Pat Palau is releasing in an Italian version. Originally printed in Oxford, England by Lion Hudson publishers, and distributed in the United States by Kregel, this is an international title.
Get your copy at http://amzn.to/W27noY
What scares you to death? Terminal illness? Financial ruin? Loss of someone dear? For everyone whose life has been crippled by anxiety, here is a book about finding freedom. Pat Palau provides practical, tangible ways to make progress. Fear incapacitates; it strangles the life out of us. Her book guides the reader to those passages in the Bible that comfort, strengthen, and encourage. She provides trustworthy steps to get you moving again – despite and through your fear. Readers will understand their fear and its root causes; adopt practical, tangible tools to overcome fear; and begin new healthy life habits. Fear does not need to choke your life. Jesus Christ has already paved the way for your freedom.
About the Author
Mrs Pat Palau is the wife of the international evangelist Luis Palau and speaks regularly to women’s gatherings around the world. PeggySue Wells is a professional author with thirteen books to her credit and hundreds of articles.
Meet Winston. Yes, when he wants to sit down, he merely backs up to my couch and sits. Bet your little dog can’t do that.
He’s my grand-dog. Currently my sole “grand.” Recently all my kids were home. We celebrated our family Christmas on January 4. With seven children, five who are adults, we learned when my first began her career that Christmas isn’t about the day, it is about coming together to celebrate Christ in our lives and each other. And that can happen on December 25 or January 4. Time together was fulfilling to my mother’s soul.
Winston traveled down from the apartment he shares with my daughter and son-in-law in Chicago. A year old, Winston weighs 150 pounds. More than me. He is not done growing. There are advantages to a big dog. Perhaps the most noticeable is that he is perpetually a traffic-stopper and conversation-starter. People are drawn to see this gentle giant. And his size is perfect for a satisfying, wrap your whole arms around hug.
Wishing you wonder-full relationships and hugs in 2013.