At first when I signed onto Match.com and other dating services I simply wanted to “meet someone” like a boyfriend– as many do. Like others, I put lots of thought into what I stated in my profile– wanting to put out an image that would be interesting and attractive to men, wanting to convey my unique qualities and interests. I had friends take special photo shoots to find a picture that set off my best features. I grinned for the cameras :).
As I have participated, I have browsed much and after reading a profile that captured my eye, I have written many introductory emails. When I began, I viewed profiles with several filters: who I greatly admired and who I thought I could attract. There were many men who I decided would never be interested in me– because of … not a good enough body, face… not attractive enough, not quiet enough… etc etc.
When the man would not respond to my introductory salvo.. and I would feel confirmed in not being enough… (hang head low) .
Throughout the years of dating experimentation, I have been also using what I write about in this column and growing more and more. As you read each week, continually I paid attention to where I focus. Over time I am gaining the pay off of greater self awareness and mastery. It was a fine day when I told myself a different story — wait a darn minute— here I am typing in my living room– I send a note off to a male total stranger — and because I get no response from unknown person I interpret that as confirmation of being unworthy on the planet. I am allowing myself to be wounded by a man who is featured in a little box on the internet. What is wrong with this picture?
As I have gained more experience and met many men, I have come to see how each of us both men and women project out our unhealed places onto those we encounter. We get to see that stuff big time as we play with dating. Regarding this no response to an introduction, I am projecting that it means that I am not respected. There are so many reasons why men don’t respond to a first email. What if they still hate their ex-wife? What if they are still wounded from the last girlfriend who left them? What if they are too afraid? What if they feel they are not good enough for me! and on and on… Bottom line– for heaven’s sake why am I making what they choose to do mean something “bad” about me!
You know one of my recommendations is to promote your evolution by self-appreciation. I find this practice helps me grow my love — when I feel great, I expand in love and tolerance for all those around me.
Ok if I want to feel good would I play on a service where many ignore my notes and others write to try a scam on me? I make it a journey of increasing self awareness. What I feel in response to various situations shows me my stuff. I recognized that all my adolescent feelings, much unhealed material from my past, gets stirred up by what occurs… the messages, the waiting, the unknowns… the meeting on the first date, etc etc. I can become conscious of how I am perceiving, and with that awareness I then have a shot at making some changes. I can change my focus and update those habits of thought bit by bit.
I have used this play to learn about myself, make changes, practice new approaches. This way I cannot lose! I have been posted on several dating sites for many years now. I love noticing how differently I feel now. Progress to note! YAY I feel so much better about myself!
As I blog, I will periodically share more of the incidents and insights gleaned from the internet dating experience. It has provided a means of major growth. and I am still at it 🙂
Do you want to share a story of how you have gained awareness from dating experiences? Make other comments? Please write to firstname.lastname@example.org. Enjoy the richness of the ride!