Discouraged by Dating: How Do I Keep My Spirits Up?

Dear Sherry,

I don't seem to be very good at this dating thing. I have been single for over a year. Every time I fall for a guy, it turns bad, and the rejection is never from my side. The problem is I'm starting to think it's me. After getting burned twice in the past year, I feel as though I'm never going to find a Mr. Right who really likes me too. And while I can handle being single, I hate feeling so down on myself. If I'm not happy with me, how am I supposed to ever be happy with someone else?

--from lynnsey01

Question:

Dear lynnsey01,

You are absolutely right. Until you are happy with yourself you can't be happy with anyone else. That means before you even start looking for a new guy, you need to find a way to love and value yourself. A woman who can't do this is more likely to fall under the spell of a man who will treat her badly.

I don't know what went wrong in your failed relationships, but if you don't want to pick the same type of guy again, write a relationship resume. Start from your first relationship. Write out the details of three or four of your failed romances. This exercise will help you figure out what you've done wrong (and right) in the past so you can make wiser choices in the future.

When you finish your romantic resume, look for patterns. Do you keep picking men who can't commit? Are they usually people who need a challenge? Also, look for patterns in your behavior. Ask yourself, "What are the ways in which I'm not meeting a partner's needs?" By writing this out, you'll see clearly what you got out of the relationships, what you didn't get out of them, and how they affected you. This assignment will help you realize your romantic strengths and also how to overcome our romantic weaknesses.

Good luck,
Sherry


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