If you’ve been hurt in the past (you’re human, right?), and you haven’t worked through your pain and fear in dating and relationships, it will be almost impossible for you to find lasting love.
I know many people who have stopped dating, because they’re afraid of getting hurt again. How about you? Maybe the mere thought of dating makes you break out in hives. Or perhaps you are actively dating, but you’re never attracted to anyone. You find fault in all your dates. That’s not because most people are unattractive and deeply flawed. It’s because of fear. When you date through the lens of fear, the world of dating can seem bleak and hopeless.
A fearful guarded heart shuts love out. You could meet the love of your life, but you would probably subconsciously push him/her away. Most fears are imagined, or False Expectations Appearing Real. If they go unchecked, they will keep you from the intimate relationship that could rock your world.
Without pain there is no true love
In my TEDx talk, I spoke about the “tootsie pop” layers that used to surround my heart. I thought they’d keep me safe from pain. I developed those guards because of past heartbreak and failed relationships. I learned the wrong lessons; when you get hurt, it’s best to stay safe and guard your heart. That way, you won’t get hurt again. This couldn’t be further from the truth.
The fear of getting hurt again was the main reason I married ‘safe’, a decision that turned out to be far from the ‘safe’ loving relationship I yearned for.
Guarding my heart kept me from fully experiencing the joy of a loving partnership, from choosing a man with whom I’d experience the full gamut of love’s emotions; the ups, the downs, the pain and the absolute joy of true love.
15 of the greatest fears in dating and relationship
I polled my private Facebook group of over 700 single women over 40, and here are their top 15 dating and relationship fears.
- Getting a disease.
- Never finding the ‘one’.
- Having my heart ripped out of my chest (not literally).
- Finding and KEEPING the relationship I want. I am so willing to put in the work to find love, and keep hearing that he is out there, but sometimes I really wonder if it is all BS!!
- The unknown. Taking the first step, then the second…like falling off a cliff and hoping someone catches you. But, the possible risks are all worth the possible reward.
- Giving up my independence.
- Getting involved with an asshole I then have trouble getting rid of.
- Want to avoid divorce at all costs and would prefer not to spend the second half of my life without a loving partner, but will be on my own until the right one shows up.
- Getting stuck in a situation or with someone that I cannot get out of. I remember when I was younger and dating, my mom NEVER gave me a curfew (I was the good little girl and really did not have that many dates). There were so many times I had wished she gave me a curfew! It’s not nearly as bad now, because I’ve learned that it’s MY life and I can say goodbye whenever I wish.
- Breach of trust, lying.
- Repeating unhealthy patterns.
- Getting involved with another sociopath. Connecting to the wrong person, because as time passes, his true identity is revealed.
- That I will not open my heart fully for fear of being hurt.
- That I won’t be accepted for who I am, food allergies and all.
Is fear keeping you from love? If you’d like to overcome your fears, I have a wonderful low-cost mini course about how to overcome fears in dating and relationships. You’ll learn how to work through fear of emotional intimacy, and how to date again after a breakup or divorce. You’ll discover the top fears when dating in midlife and how to overcome them, and you’ll learn how to un-guard your heart and attract the love you deserve. Click here to learn more.
Please share your top fears in dating and relationships.
Photo: Flickr/Thomassin Mickaël