Yesterday, I spent time with a colleague I hadn’t seen in a long time. I knew he had been online dating so was interested in an update.
He had decided to run his dating life similarly to how he runs his business. He’d troll for suitable prospects on dating sites, then send an email to each with a link to a 12-page web site outlining every detail of who he is and who he is looking for. This page included much more information than an online profile allowed. In addition to his hobbies, profession, health, food, religion, he included his sexual frequency preference! He says this detailed information eliminated women who aren’t a match.
Recently, a woman responded with a 3.5-page version of her own preferences in his categories. They met within days and she removed her profile within a week of posting it. Although they live a 3-hour drive apart, after a few months dating, they are now engaged.
The missing piece of this story is that this 50-year-old colleague has been married 4 times before. I have no idea how long he dated before marrying, nor how long he was married to each. But based on this whirlwind romance, I’m wondering if he’s repeating a pattern of quickly falling in love, marrying, then finding out what each other is really like, thus divorcing.
A nearly 60-year-old gal pal has been married 5 times. Again, I don’t know how long the courtships or marriages lasted. Her last union was a few years. One could theorize that the marriages ended because they really didn’t know each other and took the plunge too quickly.
In dating, when you meet someone who seems a great match, it’s easy to fall quickly. And it’s easy to ignore the wisdom that you would share with another who was making wedding plans within months of meeting: “Slow down!” When it is you, you argue, “But this is different” or “But he’s the one” or “But I’ve never felt this way before.” So why rush? If he’s the one, he’ll still be the one in 6 or 12 or 24 months, won’t he? So unless you are thinking you want biological children and the clock is ticking, why sprint to the alter?
You’ve heard of hasty marriages lasting a lifetime. But more frequently quickie nuptials crash and burn fast. Remember the hours-long Britney Spears marriage? You want to make sure it is likely to last before tying the knot. Divorces are just too damaging to go through if you can avoid them.
When you find yourself talking about moving in together or marriage within weeks of meeting someone, remember to recite the first line of Simon and Garfunkle‘s “The 59th Street Bridge Song (Feelin’ Groovy)“: “Slow down, you move to fast.” But instead of “You’ve got to make the morning last” how about saying “We’ve got to make sure it will last.”
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