When love works out for us, there is no doubt it is magical – there are few experiences that compare with finding out that someone feels about you the same way you feel about them. The last thing anyone should want to do is discourage you from being open to romance. That may be why, even when Elvis Presley sang “Wise men say only fools rush in…” he was quick to add “…but I can’t help falling in love”.
Let’s be clear here: there is nothing “foolish” about wanting to find love, and being an optimist. However, there can be no doubt that music and TV drama have done little to prepare us for the – sadly inevitable – occasions when dating fails to live up to the image we build up in our minds.
On those occasions when we “rush in”, it’s all too easy to overlook things that can cause a relationship to fall flat later on. Before you get swept up in a new romance, it’s worth thinking about the following things:
Are you both looking for the same thing from a relationship?
Few people want to spoil the early days of a new relationship with “the talk” about where we see the relationship going, but it is important to be honest with yourself – and any new love – about what you are looking for. To avoid those awkward conversations, it helps to look for love in the right places.
For example, if you want to be with someone of faith into old age and beyond, it’s a good idea to look for love on Christian or Muslim dating sites that are focused on long term matches, while there are other options which take account of different priorities. By searching in the right place to begin with, you can be sure you’re on the same page.
Are your lives compatible?
When you start a relationship, it’s inevitable that you will make time to see the new person in your life, and that you won’t even think twice about prioritizing the chance to be with them. That’s great! However, if you’re going to make a real go of this partnership, it needs to be able to survive when real-world commitments such as friends and family get involved. Within a few weeks of the relationship starting, it’s a good idea to start introducing your new love to your friends. This is a good test of how a relationship will survive “real world” conditions.
Do you want to be with this person, or just with “someone”?
Perhaps the most important question you can ask yourself at the beginning of a relationship, and also one of the toughest, is whether you’re rushing into things because you want to be with someone. While there is nothing wrong with dating someone and seeing what it can grow into, it is important not to build it into something more before you both feel ready to take that next step.
It’s all too easy to “fall in love with love”, but that other person is an entire human being with feelings and responsibilities. Pushing a relationship when the connection doesn’t really exist is unfair on them – and, in the long run, on you.
If the time is right, and there is a connection there, a loving relationship with another person is hard to beat – as long as you know what you’re getting into!