Here is a guest blog from the fabulous Sarah Showfety whose dating life was a wreck.
Sarah’s So-Called Dating Life
After several years swinging and missing on the New York singles scene, I had little to show for my efforts besides a string of two-month “almost boyfriends” and an Inbox full of men I’d never hear from again.
Determined not to have another year of one-off dates and textlationships to nowhere, I embarked on an experiment to change the direction of my dating life once and for all. For the better part of a year, I read and (mostly) followed the advice of a different dating guidebook each month, chronicling what I learned from my misadventures in my memoir, Dating by the Books: One Blundering Singleton’s Search for Love in the Self-Help Aisle.
At home, in my slippers, I absorbed and filtered the advice of various experts, with no connection to the authors themselves. Their printed do’s and don’ts ricocheted around my head, but helped little when I needed to resolve a dating life dilemma in a pinch. It wasn’t until the ninth month that I had the opportunity to meet one of the love gurus live and in-person.
The Turning Point: I ask Dr. Diana to be my Love Mentor
After having the opportunity to encounter Dr. Diana at a book party and tell her of my project, I quickly made the best-selling dating book, Love in 90 Days: The Essential Guide to Finding Your Own True Love my next tome. (Interestingly, I also met a Prime Love Candidate the very next day. Coincidence? Hmm. Not sure!). After learning all about “deadly dating patterns” and DUDs vs. STUDs I asked Dr. Diana if she’d be willing to add some real-time love mentoring to my textbook experiment. To my pleasure, she agreed.
As I continued dating, no more did I have to flip through dog-eared copies of inanimate objects, trying to find answers to my questions. When in doubt, I consulted Dr. Diana. Not only did she help me distinguish my “Diamond Self” and urge me to take action aligned with my most authentic self (inspiring a cathartic hiking trip to Machu Picchu), she was full of nuggets to help me be successful in the crucial early stages with any new beau. In my head, I’d hear her voice chirp:
Wear red! Men love red. Date three guys at a time (but no sex for at least two months). On your second date, tell him you think he’s fabulous. You’re having a wonderful time with him but you’re taking things slowly and dating other people. And remember the praise! You have to praise him.
I Meet Prime Candidate A
As things continued with Prime Love Candidate A, she coached me through my next stage of questions: How soon is too soon to be available last minute? How do I know if he’s pulling away or just getting more comfortable? How do I address bringing stuff over to get ready for work at his place?
Time and again, when I took Dr. Diana’s relationship advice, my boyfriend would respond as she predicted. She helped me figure out how to ask for what I wanted without being demanding. She told me when to leave him alone and when to apologize. As things progressed further, and I wondered how to have “The Talk,” again I sought counsel. “Bring it up when you’re feeling close and with no drama. Whatever he says, repeat it back to him. Self-control is key.” No matter the topic, her words of wisdom helped me successfully navigate my growing relationship through new territory.
And this year, I’m happy to report, Prime Love Candidate A became my husband. If you’re like me, your dating life and relationships probably need outside support to survive. I’m so grateful that some of mine came from a source as experienced and wise as Dr. Diana.
Thank you Sarah for sharing your wonderful journey from a struggling dating life to the joy of being with a terrific guy and having a child. Be sure to read more articles in our Dating Advice for Women Series.
Sarah Showfety is a great stand-up comedian, author and speaker. She can be reached at sarahshowfety.com