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Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Being Single: Dating During Personal Crises

Photo by Roxana Gonzalez
At times in my life when I have experienced personal setbacks, I have considered pulling out of the dating arena until things return to ‘normal’. My friends have always counseled me to continue to date. They state that my circumstances do not define me, and that in those times of high stress, being able to get out and have fun and get that personal boost which dating can bring, could be exactly what I need to keep my morale up.

What I have experienced tells a very different story. I have discovered that in this day and age, people in the dating world are horrifically quick to judge people by their circumstances and by the curve balls life throws at them.

If you are hit with a sudden financial low: you are presumed to be a ‘gold digger’ and a ‘lazy lout’.

If you are hit with struggles with your kids: you are presumed to be a bad parent.

If you are hit with any type of legal woes: you are presumed to be ‘guilty’ and ‘deserving’ of them.

If your way of dealing with difficult people is not the same as your date’s ways: you are presumed to be either a ‘trouble-maker’ or a ‘doormat’.

The list goes on.

Where in the world did society come up with this notion that they are the only ones with valid trials not of their own doing: and everyone else brought theirs upon themselves and ‘deserve’ them?

How did dealing with a normal part of life known as ‘trials’ suddenly become a hallmark of some deeply-rooted character flaw?

People are so very quick to make assumptions based upon what they think they see, they frequently miss the bigger picture; and as a result, the truth. This mistake comes with a heavy price when it comes to relationships and eternity. The scriptures clearly tell us that we will not be found ‘innocent’ when we have been so quick to deem others ‘guilty’.
Luke 6:37
Moroni 7:18

It reminds me of that game I used to see in magazines where a macro view of something was shown, and from that small section, you were supposed to guess what the big picture was. It was a rare occasion when anyone guessed correctly.

DO YOU KNOW WHAT THIS IS? *Answer at end of post. Photo by Chance Agrella

What this all boils down to is the philosophy I adopted previously, and which still applies in this circumstance. People are people and I am not responsible for what they think, feel, say, or do. I am only responsible for what I think, feel, say, and do. This means that I have every right to continue to date and live my life; just as those who feel otherwise or choose to be quick to cast me as something or someone other than I am, are free to do so . . .somewhere outside of the realm of my life.

*ANSWER: The photo is a very close up shot of the petals of a sunflower. As the picture illustrates, seeing one small part of something does not always mean we then know what the 'big picture' really is.

This blog post is one in a series on Being Single. Through the run of this series, please give feedback regarding YOUR experiences with being single and LDS, or ask any questions you may have that I have not addressed.

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