The Beauty Behind All My Dating Breakups

On Thursday I came back to writing after taking a blogging hiatus (more or less) for the past few years. In my first blog entry back, I told you about all the breakups I’ve had with women the last few years. Yesterday I told you about the pretty Belgian woman who got me to thinking about what dating has become. So, where were we in that whole discussion?

Oh, that’s right. I had just come back from Europe with a new plan to begin dating with a fresh mindset. I would be committing my full dating efforts to anyone awesome that I met and with whom there was any real potential after just the first date.

In all honesty, what could go wrong with that plan? There I was, in my mid-thirties, and dating certainly wasn’t going great the way I had been doing it. It’s not like dating someone half-heartedly for months would let me know that they’re secretly a serial killer before I finally commit. It’s not like I would discover all of each person’s personal crazy sides before we actually dove into things head-on. And most importantly, it’s not like I wouldn’t be able to just break up with someone if it all backfired.

Yep. I was gonna do it.

Enter girlfriend #1 under my new dating plan.

Dan Pearce with girlfriend

She was an elementary school teacher whom I met while on a trip in Las Vegas. We had an epic first date and I couldn’t deny that we both definitely liked each other a lot by the end of it.

It was so strange instigating that first conversation with her about my new plan to just go for it and basically commit right away when I like someone.

My usual M.O., after all, is playing it cool, not texting too quickly or too eagerly, playing a bit hard to get, and making sure she knows there is plenty of competition, so keep on me, girl! You all know the dastardly game.

Instead, after one date, I told her about my conversation with Belgian woman and told her that’s what I want to start doing.

I expected her to run for the hills and think I was some sort of desperate psycho. Instead, she just nodded, and slowly smiled, and got lost in thought for a moment. She said, “yeah, I’m in! That actually sounds like a pretty nice change.”

No drama. No games. We committed to each other very early on, and we actually had an insanely awesome relationship… While it lasted.

It didn’t last. We broke up for reasons that ain’t none of yo’ business. That was that.

I’ll admit. It was really nice to do it that way, and I decided to do it that way from then on out.

Enter girlfriend #2. She was such a fun human. Our fun sides just clicked so well.

It didn’t last. We broke up really quick for reasons that ain’t none of yo’ business. That was that.

Enter girlfriend #3. She was so sweet all the time, and she laughed sincerely at my jokes, which is like crack to me.

It didn’t last. We broke up for reasons that ain’t none of yo’ business. That was that.

Enter girlfriend #4. The sweetest, most sassy woman I ever met.

Oh, wait. Nope. That’s my grandma. Let’s try that again.

Enter girlfriend #4. If you’re thinking she looks a lot like girlfriend #3 you are absolutely correct. We dated once. Then dated again a year later.

It didn’t last. We broke up for reasons that ain’t none of yo’ business. That was that.

And finally, girlfriend #5. She was the quickest witted woman I’ve ever encountered and worked endlessly to be a better version of herself.

Spoiler alert. It also didn’t last. We broke up just a few weeks ago for reasons that ain’t none of yo’ business. And that was that.

Why share all this with you? Are these women just numbers to me? Why share pictures of us in rapid succession?

I want to ask you something. Do I personally look miserable in any of these photos? Do I look like I did something really stupid and am now stuck with these people for better or worse? Do the women I’m dating look miserable? Do they look like they’re stuck in their own bad decisions?

Obviously, the answer is no. I had amazing times with all of these women. I made amazing memories. I had amazing relationships… While they lasted. They weren’t numbers. They were real people, amazing people, and I had something special with them all in the time I was given with them.

What they all had in common was that with every single one of these amazing people, I met them… I liked them… They liked me… We discussed the story of the Belgian woman… I asked for their thoughts about it… And we just kind of agreed to jump in. There wasn’t ever weeks and weeks or months and months of game playing and dating other people before we committed to be exclusive. There wasn’t the obsession about whether or not we were right for each other. We just liked each other, and we went for it, let the end come if it may.

I have come to believe that we get so caught up in wanting to meet our “forever someones” that we miss out on many of the people who were meant to be “someone for now” in our lives. We strive to know before we ever commit if the people we meet have potential to “be with me until death do we friggin’ part.” But, c’mon. Does waiting and trying to figure that out before ever really committing guarantee that at all?

Sure, in my relationships we had our ups and downs. We had our joys and our sorrows together. We ended up breaking up. It didn’t last for eternity. We broke up for reasons that ain’t none of yo’ business. That was that.

And can’t that just be that? Can’t that be okay? Can’t it be something kind of beautiful and amazing without judgment or declarations of the disposability of romantic partners?

Don’t get me wrong. Living and dating this way will definitely bring more breakups with more people.

It will bring more heartache than it would if you proceed with extreme caution with everyone you meet, I guarantee it.

And do you know what I have learned? I have learned not to fear that, but rather to embrace it.

After all, the human heart can only hurt if something was worth having in the first place. Loss can only be felt if there was something real to lose. Breakups can only happen if two people had a connection enough to join their lives together in the first place.

In other words, it’s always worth it.

I’m such a believer in this now that I am committed to never going back to the old/new way of dating. No more apps full of lists with hundreds of matches. No more dates with other people waiting in the wings just in case. No more games that can’t ever be won.

Will I find my forever someone? Maybe. But it’s something I’m not going to know until I get to the end of my life and someone is just still there, laughing with me about how we jumped right in and went for it all those years before.

Dan Pearce | The Single Dad Laughing Blog