As you’ve probably noticed from the influx of adverts, January is a BIG month for the dating industry. Singles all over the world get through Christmas alone, and having spent another NYE with no one to kiss at midnight, suddenly turn to apps, websites and events for help to find ‘the One’.
I know I’ve been there. Christmas is one of the times of the year when you can feel most single, and it can be easy to jump online and assume all your troubles will be over in a matter of weeks … maybe just in time for Valentines Day. But before you leap into something new this new year, it’s certainly worth having a good think about what you need. Not just in a person, but in the relationship as a whole.
This past six weeks, I’ve been backpacking around Australia and New Zealand, visiting friends all around both countries. Along the way, I’ve stayed with several different couples – some I knew before, others are friends with new partners, and some were just new people I met along the way. And the interesting thing, when you become a fly on the wall of a partnership for a few days, is just how much you can learn about yourself and your own expectations for a relationship.
Often we need to witness firsthand the things we really don’t like in a relationship, in order to understand what we do or don’t need. And it’s a lot easier to appreciate the bad stuff by seeing it with others, than by suffering through it yourself. The thing is, often others won’t see the ‘bad’ things as bad. We all have different expectations and thresholds.
However, as you embark on the early stages of a relationship, and try to work out what you want, it’s important to look beyond the simple ‘six foot, brown hair, athletic …’ requirements. Yes, the subjective stuff is important at the start, but you could meet the man or woman of your dreams, and still turn out to be a match made in Hell.
Over the past six weeks, I’ve watched heaps of different relationship dynamics. I’ve seen couples bicker, relationships where one partner does everything for the other, and matches so good it’s as if they are puzzle pieces. I’ve stayed with people who have moved across the world to be with their partner, ones who make breakfast and lunch for each other in the morning, and relationships where two people live almost completely separate lives. I’ve witnessed relationships I would love to replicate, and ones which would be my idea of Hell. But that’s the thing about relationships – we’re all different. We all have different expectations, and different areas which we’re prepared to compromise on.
So next time you fill out an online dating form, and tick through the various requirements in a partner, have a proper think about what is important to you in a relationship. Do you need someone who takes the lead? Someone who can fend for himself in a social situation? Do you prefer to keep your friends very separate to your love life? Should a partner share all your hobbies? Are you attracted to more submissive personalities? How far are you prepared to adapt for love?
Happy New Year!
Miss Twenty-Nine xxx