So the date didn’t go well. There simply wasn’t a connection.
So the date turned into a tragic story. One you may retell for years to come.
Why do you feel sad that this date didn’t turn out?
The easy answer is because expectations weren’t met. You had hoped he/she would be this different type of person.
The fearful answer is you blame yourself. You think something is wrong with you. Your expectations were assumed wrong about this person. (You gave a good character person a chance! Brave you!) Instead of seeing this bad date for simply what it is—a bad date–you start contorting yourself like maybe something was wrong with you. With the deeper fear that you are not loveable.
Stop contorting yourself. You got a gift. Your discerner (part-brain, part-instinct, and part-Holy-Spirit) is working. You can trust yourself more.
Dr. Henry Cloud (big fan here) shared these symptoms of what happens to you when you are in a bad match:
“Clinical symptoms: Discouragement, guilt, shame, anger and resentment, feelings of inferiority, hopelessness, depression, loss of energy, anxiety and fear, approval-seeking, hyper-vigilance. The fear of making a mistake. A high concern around incurring this person’s anger or disapproval. Driven to the temptation to self-medicate.
“Relational symptoms: People-pleasing dominates your mind. You feel controlled by this person. You experience anger and resentment in the relationship, as well as gossip and a lack of real intimacy. A breakdown of direct communication. Avoidance of the person either passively or actively. The good moments are more times of relief or momentary “approval” than real connection.
“Performance symptoms: Not performing well because of the pressure you feel, an inordinate focus on avoiding a mistakes, perfectionistic obsessions. You have lost the big picture and the motivation to dream and be creative. And others as well.” –Dr. Henry Cloud, daily email, October 24, 2019
Do you see the gift that you were given? You were spared all of this. You have been given opportunity to use your time to find a better match instead of wasting time on this bad match.
A failed date does not define you. That failed date becomes a “so what.” A story. Maybe a humorous story.
You are okay to be rejected by that bad date. You got a gift because your brave decisions are defining you—which makes you a pretty great person to match with.
(Photo by Vidal Balielo Jr. from Pexels)