How to Not Lose Who You Are When You Are Dating Someone
Guest post by Jenni Marlow
Before we start dating someone, we should probably know what our deal breakers, pet peeves, and ideal qualities are for another person. We should probably also know a lot about ourselves as well. We should probably be aware of our own characteristics that attract others or when we compromise who we are for someone else. More often than not, we end up doing these things usually because of infatuation or because it is something new and exciting and then nobody wins.
1. “We Will Talk About it Later” Mentality
Let’s face it- we all have a part of our lives that we are not proud of and there are things we have done that should probably not be talked about on a first date, but there are things that should definitely be discussed before getting serious with someone. For example, my faith is the most important thing to me. That is something I discuss immediately when I’ve met someone I’m interested in, and they are also interested in me. If there is a part of their world that I absolutely have zero desire of living in, I should voice that. I feel strongly about not living with someone before I marry them and so I will talk about that. Communicate. Talk about things. Be honest. Do not be afraid of the truth- the truth sets us free and it will always come out later. It is better to tell the truth now rather than to waste time and money. I have learned that I should never assume that someone is on the same page as me just because we have similar interests, we have good conversation, or even worse- because we are physically attracted to each other.
2. Pay Attention to Your Close Friends
How would my close friends describe me? What would they say about me to someone else or someone that I do not know to separate me from other people? If I am dating someone and my closest friends start saying things like: I am not my usual self around the person I am dating, or they see my personality completely change after I have been around my boyfriend. This could be a red flag that I am not dating the right person. Most of us want to find someone that brings out and accentuates our best qualities. Most of us want to find someone that gets us out of our comfort zones. Most of us do not want to be with someone that questions who we are as a person and most of us do not want to date someone that makes us think that the only way we can keep that person is if we compromise our morals and values just to keep them interested.
3. Time for Yourself, Family, and Friends
Am I noticing that the person I am dating seems to want to spend every single moment with me? I love the idea of spending a lot of time with a great guy that likes me as much as I like him, but I need to have time for myself, friends, and family as well. I cannot put all of my value and worth into another person. They will let me down and I will let them down. We are humans after all. I have to know that my worth and value comes from somewhere else. For me, that is from Christ, so I do not constantly have to search for that validation from others. A big red flag I have seen in finding a mate, is when I see who their closest friends are. If they do not have at least a few close friends that they hangout with regularly, this could be a big deal. If they do not have people that are consistent on showing up in their life to encourage them, sharpen them, and hold them accountable for their actions, who does? I would be concerned because if they do not have that, they could end up making the person they date their everything. What happens if things do not work out? That is way too much pressure and extremely stressful to be someone’s whole world.
If we have a firm grasp on who we are as a person, what we will not settle on, and what our most important values are, we will not be searching for someone to totally rearrange or redefine that for us. If we do not know what we will stand for, then we could fall for anything or even just an attractive face. To me, the biggest thing to know before I start dating someone, is to know and love myself. If I know and love myself, I will know exactly what my deal breakers are and what are just preferences I have. I will know when it is okay to walk away or when to try and make it work with someone. If I did not have these things, I would be walking on shaky ground and someone could easily change the person I have worked so hard to become.
My name is Jenni and I like to write and drink lots of tea or coffee. I am very interested in Asian pop culture, (Asian men are my favorite), and trying to love those around me. My faith is the most important thing to me and it is what makes me who I am. Find me on Instagram.
*The above post is owned by Jenni Marlow and may not be republished or copied without consent from the writer.
My husband and I just talked about this afternoon – having this convo with our daughter who is starting to date. We want to make sure she is grounded in who she is and what she stands for before a guy sweeps her off her feet and compromises those beliefs. I read this to her and it has sparked great conversation. Thank you for sharing!
I’m happy to hear that!
Thank you for the feedback! I am happy for you that you & your daughter have such a good relationship. 🙂
Jenny, great advice and eloquently written. Must read for all new daters.
Thank you so much, my fellow writer! I appreciate the feedback!
good and wise, Jen
Thank you Rosser! I appreciate the feedback!
To me, the most important thing in a relationship to me is spending time with each other & doing things for each other without asking. Faith isn’t important to me in the grand scheme of things. I understand why it’s important to people, but it personally never impacted me in such a way that I make it a priority for myself. What’s important to me is the quality of the people that are in my life. Life’s not worth living if you don’t have people you love to enjoy it with.
When it comes to living with someone before marriage, I personally believe that you should spend time living with them before committing to spending a lifetime with someone. If their lifestyle or way of living doesn’t meld well with yours, finding that out after you’ve married someone would already be too late.
And lastly, I wholeheartedly agree that having time to yourself is equally as important as spending time with your significant other. We are all individuals, and we all have our own hobbies that keep us happy and fulfilled.
Great advice and well written.