Dear Aunty Em: Dating losers
‘I keep dating total losers and then getting dumped. What the hell is wrong with me?’ – Losing at love
Dear Losing at love,
Oh boy. I can relate. There was a time when I was dating the used Bandaids from the bottom of the gene pool. There was the biter – who at least had teeth – and then there was the guy with no teeth. Yes, no front teeth. He was too broke to get his dentures replaced after standing on them and went out into the world, proudly gappy.
This gem of a bloke had an overflowing ashtray next to his pillow, was tattooed head-to-toe, and worked in a call centre selling death insurance. He was also a rare South African/cockney combo that is as attractive as it sounds.
At that time, my life was properly sh*t. I was living in a share house full of couples, I had lost most of my belongings in a house fire and Tony Abbott had won the election. I was also flat broke from paying off an enormous tax bill.
So I was down. So far down that getting kicked seemed normal.
I met this guy online, we hung out a bit, and within two weeks, I was smitten.
Looking back, I can see that I was just trying to distract myself from how far off piste I had wandered.
This guy dumped me and went back to his cheating ex, breaking my heart and creating a wonderful diversion that meant I could drink and cry as much as I wanted to.
But why was I really crying?
My dear Losing at love, are you happy with your life? Are things going well at work, with your finances, with your family and friends? Or are things a bit crappy? Why are you dating in the first place? Are you looking for true love or are you filling up time and mental space because you don’t like what’s happening in your head when you’re not dating losers?
My point is that dating losers is a great distraction, and getting dumped is an even better one.
My bet is that you know what you are looking for in a partner, and it doesn’t take you long to figure out these guys are not it. So why are you engaging? Why is it getting to the point where they have the power to dump you?
Are you trying to make yourself feel bad?
I would venture that you already feel bad and that this dynamic reinforces something that is already in play.
Step out of this pattern. Sit and think about what you don’t like about your life. And then put all your energy and intelligence into fixing that.
And if what you don’t like about your life is that you are single? Change tack. Write a list of what you love about yourself as though you are your best friend – all the truly noble, gorgeous things – and when you are on a date, objectively ask yourself, ‘Does this guy deserve that woman?’. If the answer is no – and you know you know – walk away quickly.