3 min

Learning to date

Growing pains

In most scenarios and situations, I think of myself as quicker than the average pussycat. However, I’ll admit that when it comes to dating, I, Parul Pandya, am a complete dummy. Having recently had this needed but slightly embarrassing awakening, I realized the urgency of taking responsibility for creating my own courtship woes.

It seems that breaking old habits presents a very difficult challenge for me. I have spent the last two years trying to grow into a more stable part of my womanhood. Upon reflection, I realize how much my emotional nature hinders my ability to date smart, and when dating fails, not to fall apart. I get easily caught up in feelings for women I don’t know very well, and I tend to be the first to blurt out words of affection with no hesitations.

It’s good to be bold when it comes to your feelings, but it’s also intelligent to allow someone to work for your affection. I’m trying to remind myself to take things slowly and observe how things go over a period of time. I need to find a woman who can handle all my complexity and blemishes and appreciate my steady, strong heart. I guess I’m trying to get to know a girl before we knot our labias together in happily-ever-after.

One of my main flaws is the muddling of my visceral behaviour with my pressing desire to find a real love, like Ms Mary J Blige. I realize that though I won’t move away from being old-school in my love expectations, I need to gain perspective about each person I see without jumping ahead into the dating-light. This is one hell of a bad pattern I’ve formed.

Patience, I admit, is the virtue I most lack, and this is a devastating blow when it comes to being a capable dater. When I want a woman, I want her wholeheartedly in that instant. I forget to pace myself in the process of falling for her. The butterflies, grinning like a fool, a first kiss, daydreaming — these moments are as special as being committed with someone.

I also have an insatiable need to nurture the women I date. My sister once told me, “If you want to baby someone, then have a baby. You’re nauseating when you’re in relationships. It makes me wanna puke!” Ouch. When my sister said this, it initially annoyed me, though in retrospect I giggle and nod in agreement at her dose of tough love. Looking for an equal partner in the shag-den, in affection, in mindset and in emotional maturity is a huge undertaking. I’m used to being the sole pampering lover in a relationship. Only rarely have I hooked up with someone who pampers me.

In fact, my past is full of tales of hot messes who were far from ideal dating material, either because they were unstable, emotionally unavailable and too busy to make time for me, or simply overshadowed by my big personality. I blame my bad judgment on the fact that I didn’t know better back in them days, but now that I do, I’m no longer willing to settle for the consolation prize of second-best girlfriend.

I want my She-Ra to be the cream of the crop.  When I do find her, I dream about her being chivalrous with me, thoughtful in her actions and sweet with her words.

The past two months I’ve been focused on consuming multiple pints of Magners over many conversations with my closest friends and family.

My insatiable appetite for women doesn’t catch them by surprise, but when I ask for advice on how to date, it’s clear they’re encouraging my new chill-out attitude. They remind me to respect that not everyone wants to quickly move to something bigger and to enjoy getting to know another person more intimately.

My reinvented dating attitude has already led me to meet a few astonishing women. Obviously not all of them have remained in my everyday life, but I still appreciate the shove it’s given me to grow into a more stable dater.

Don’t get me wrong: I’m still anxious to meet the woman of my dreams, but I’m really focusing on all aspects of making myself a better partner for her. My progress continues. No longer am I driven by notions of “everything’s forever.” I am here to amaze and dazzle the lezzie population until my fair maiden someday comes along.

Parul Pandya blogs at