Lately I often go out to Christmas parties with colleagues and friends. While I enjoyed it for part of the night, I’ve been feeling overwhelmed for the past few hours. People get rowdy, and there’s a lot of swapping phone numbers or kissing. I’ve been single for almost a year and would love to date again, but the thoughts of that make me a bit discouraged. My friends are a lot more confident than I am and have no problem striking up a conversation with someone in a bar and then telling us about it the next time they drink, but I’m too shy for that. . We all talk bad about it and I don’t want them to start criticizing me. I feel lonely and want to meet someone, but I feel like I’m really not in the habit of meeting and talking to strangers. The longer I’ve been single, the more I feel this way. None of my friends are in long-term relationships so there are just a lot of casual relationships or one-night stands. I feel stuck but at the same time don’t know how to change my situation for the better, especially when it comes to dating.
Dr West replied: It seems that wherever we look, there is no bad news about war, cost of living crisis, housing crisis, and combined with the impact of the pandemic, it is no wonder that many people are saying they feel exhausted and anxious. . This especially applies to face-to-face situations where we are expected to be ‘on’ and active. For those who are more comfortable communicating behind screens or at their own pace through voice notes, falling back into these real-life social interactions can be frustrating. It’s not like it’s only been a few weeks – we’ve all suffered years of stress like this. So please don’t feel like you’re the only one who feels this way. If more people are honest about it, they can admit to feeling the same way to some extent. This openness can lead to more compassion for others who are struggling.
Your friends may feel the same way but are covering it up with insults. They may not want to kiss strangers but do it because of peer pressure or their emotional state. Research is showing that Gen Z is having less sex than older generations. This is due to obvious factors like the housing crisis, but also because they are prioritizing authentic relationships over intimacy for its sake. Try talking to them and see if you’re all really on the same page under bravery. That way, you can explore different ways to hang out together and support each other.
Dating is an even more intense form of socialization. We date and have sex for many reasons – because we’re excited, because we’re lonely, because we’re drunk, etc. If we don’t really feel like ourselves, we might dating for reassurance, comfort, or at least a temporary state of euphoria and relief from other stressors. This can prove to be a very worrying situation as in this case you may feel like you have no stable support.
Expand your ideas of what dating should be like — perhaps a trip to an art gallery, coffee shop, or brunch might be more comfortable locations for you. We can miss some red flags if we are drunk to meet someone and understand more about the situations that we may often find ourselves in.
Pause for a moment and sit back with the feelings you have around dating and sex right now. Is there something unresolved from previous experiences, or are some emotions emerging below the surface? This can make you feel insecure and needs to be addressed. The longer it goes unresolved, the more it will persist with the potential to influence your dating decisions. It’s hard to look back on painful memories, but they contain lessons that we can learn and apply to future relationships. The reward for this hard work is healthier relationships – whether it’s a friendship or a romantic relationship.
It is also possible that you have changed your dating style before. Many people meet in bars and go on to have successful relationships, however they determine it, but it is not a comfortable scenario for others. Expand your ideas of what dating should be like — perhaps a trip to an art gallery, coffee shop, or brunch might be more comfortable locations for you. We can miss some red flags if we are drunk to meet someone and understand more about the situations that we may often find ourselves in. Dating during the day and staying sober is increasingly becoming the norm and allowing people to keep their heads clear when dating. Aesthetically, upgrade your dating wardrobe to clothes that work for you now and make you feel confident. Meeting people in a bar with your friends watching and commenting on it both during and after will make a lot of people uncomfortable – let’s talk about the pressure! If you date just you and one other person, you’ll feel a lot calmer.
Think about what you really want from dating. Are you looking to settle down, or have a few one-night stands? Ask yourself what you bring to a relationship, how you communicate, and how you resolve disagreements and differences in values and goals. This work will help you expand your emotional maturity and emotional intelligence, which will also help your future relationships. It’s also an opportunity to re-examine your sexuality and desires, as finding out what turns you on and off will be helpful if you choose to have sex with your partner.
You don’t have to copy your friends and remember, they may not have a good time in reality. Even if they are extremely happy, what works for them doesn’t necessarily work for you; You are who you are with your own relationship needs and desires. Live your life and show compassion as you take your first steps towards authentic dating.
Dr. West is a sex educator and host of the podcast Glow West, which focuses on sex. Send your question to firstname.lastname@example.org. Dr. West regrets that she cannot answer questions privately
Video of the day
https://www.independent.ie/style/sex-relationships/asking-for-a-friend-i-want-to-date-but-its-just-one-night-stands-in-my-circle-of-friends-what-should-i-do-42222412.html Ask for a friend: I want to go on a date but it’s just a one-night stand in my circle of friends. What should I do?