Joanna is the Junior Wellness Lead for SSEDITORIAL Magazine, specialising…
I admit I’m a romantic at heart. In my ideal scenario, dating would be more like in the 90s. You’d go to a coffee shop and get approached by a stranger or start dating someone your friends introduced you to because you share the same interests and enjoy each other’s company. But modern dating drifts too far away from my expectations, and I’m officially exhausted.
As someone who mainly works from home, I have few opportunities to meet people the old-fashioned way. I rely on dating apps as a result. Unfortunately, constantly swiping and talking to new potential partners only to be a part of a number game is mentally draining.
Dating is more like a full-time job now. You have to work hard to find someone who truly wants to get to know you. Then you’ll need to make sure you engage enough to keep their interest. And since most people have no idea what they want (apart from a bit of validation and attention now and then). I’ve realised I no longer know what I want from dating. Just like me, if you’re confused and tired, it might be a sign to step away for a while.
Here are other signs you should take a break from dating:
Dating Is No Longer Fun
Dating is supposed to be fun. But if interacting with people makes you feel bitter and swiping seems like a chore, it’s clear that you’re drained and need to put it on pause. If you continue dating despite not feeling optimistic about it, rejection will sting even more.
It Is A Distraction
Are you exchanging messages but never following through with the plans? Quickly losing interest in everyone you meet in person? It’s a sign that you aren’t interested in getting to know anyone. You need attention to deal with boredom, loneliness or getting over a previous partner. While there’s nothing wrong with casual relationships, it’s better to take a break and let yourself heal first.
It Affects Your Self-esteem
If connecting with a new potential partner makes your day, but finding out you’re incompatible puts you in a bad mood, your mental health might suffer if you continue dating. It’s okay to take dating seriously and feel sad about missing out on a relationship. But placing too much importance isn’t healthy.
You Turn to Reddit
Do you find yourself browsing Reddit and posting new threads that allow you to vent about how modern dating doesn’t work out for you? Yup, guilty of this one. It’s nice to read comments from people who are struggling as much as you do. But overthinking it might also mean that you’re starting to look for faults in yourself. Instead of asking the community what’s wrong with you, uninstall the dating apps.
You Don’t Know What You Want
If one day you feel like having a no-string-attached relationship but want a life partner the other, you might confuse potential partners and yourself. You might also get hurt if it turns out that your friend-with-benefits could actually make a charming boyfriend. But then you remember that he’d told you he wasn’t into monogamy, and you were on board with that.
You Ignore the Dating Red Flags
It might be tempting to turn a blind when someone checks all the boxes apart from one. However, ignoring a red flag is never a good idea. If you find it difficult to let someone go even after showing you a lack of respect, you should say no to dating for the time being.
I’m not a fan of the view that if you want to date, you should focus on yourself first. However, having a bit of a breather can give you some mental clarity and shift your attention somewhere else, and that’s never a bad thing.
Joanna is the Junior Wellness Lead for SSEDITORIAL Magazine, specialising in mental health, wellness and lifestyle. In her spare time, she likes to write scripts and dance.