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Dating Triumphs and Tragedies
by Nicole Roberge

To Fearless Daters!
(Meeting People to Date)

The tricky thing about dating is meeting people to date. It’s nice when people approach you and magic happens and you can go from there. Of course there are the people you’d love to approach but sometimes, we just don’t have the guts to do it. Then…there are the people you would never want to approach you, yet, they don’t seem to recognize the terror on your face as they come closer and closer and soon are talking to you and there’s no escape and you come up with more and more excuses to leave in the midst of their cheesy banter, but you can’t. You’re caught. Isn’t there something called boundaries? I’ve heard of them.

It’s a hard thing to figure out, in this dating game, how to meet people—ones you want to at least. It does always seem to be the ones you don’t to you come up to you, and then you just can’t seem to get rid of them, and of course wouldn’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings. You lament how you ogle the one you adore all night, but it’s all the “other” guys who seem to catch the vibe, and then you go home alone with a pile of numbers you will never call, and the guy you liked just slips away…perhaps with someone else.


Well maybe, you’re not getting the message out there. Maybe you’re setting up the wrong boundaries. Of course when getting into the dating scene, you’ll be a little hesitant and on guard. Even if you don’t mean to, those boundaries go up. But they usually go up to protect yourself against the one you might really be interested in, against someone you see potential with. The other goonies, who cares? So they see you as being open and welcoming, no boundaries there. Doors open! Let’s go in fellas! So there you are, stuck with the goons for the night, and you can’t cross the bridge over to whom you really want to meet. Now you have your own boundaries, and all the trolls under the bridge. How will you ever get to the other side?

That sounds mean... I’m not trying to be mean, I’m just using the “guy you’re not interested in” as an example. You know you’ve been in the situation before, as have I, as have been my friends. Your out somewhere, someone catches your eye, and you really want to talk to him. But you’re scared. Why? Your friends try to help you along. "What could be the worst that could happen?", they say. Isn’t that annoying? It’s true, but it can be scary to go up to a stranger and just initiate conversation, and you are likely to put a boundary around yourself because he doesn’t know anything about you either. But you want to get to know him, because who knows where it could lead?

It’s all about altering those boundaries and the signals you send. You need to somehow deflect the cheeseballs and welcome the Mr. Rights. It may sound hard, but it’s really just about opening yourself up to the possibilities, and not closing yourself off to things you might be afraid of. You have to ask yourself if you just like the idea of him, or if you really want to get to know him and see if you want to go on a couple dates and pursue a relationship? If you don’t try, you won’t know. And just because you have that instant click, doesn’t mean that he might not be in the cheesball category as well. For you at least…though he might be a perfect match for one of your girlfriends. So it could still be worth the meet.

I have found, and with much help from my friends, that it’s all about fearlessness. If you really want to get out there and date, you need to put all the jitters aside and just go do it. Your daydreams aren’t going to get you anywhere. And getting out there is one thing. If you’re too nervous and put up that blockade around you, no one’s going to get in and see how great you are. Sometimes you can think you want to meet people, but you’re so afraid about the actual meeting, that others can sense that, and you wind up being a party-of-one for the night. Don’t let that happen. It’s summer. Let’s have fun. So get up. Go out. And be fearless. Break down those boundaries and meet everyone you can. It will be well worth it by the end of the night. And even if none of them work out, at least it was good practice in the dating world. But hopefully, you can say you had fun, and that’s what this is all about.

Dating Triumphs and Tragedies is published every Sunday by Online Dating Magazine columnist Nicole Roberge. She can be reached at

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