Hint: There’s No Such Thing as Soulmates
Tammy from Chino Valley, Arizona asks:
I am a newly out lesbian and have never dated. I seem to come on too strong too quickly and that seems to scare away many women whom I really like. Do you have any tips on how to approach a woman for the first time so she knows I am interested but not to be so overbearing? I am feeling very lost and have possibly messed things up with the one woman that I am very interested in. I am also very serious about being with a woman forever and many are afraid because I have not had that relationship yet.
Greetings, Tammy, and congratulations. Your self-honesty and courage will be a strong foundation for personal liberation as time goes by. Though two women together will have the same dramas, pitfalls and obstacles as any other couple, evidence does suggest that nobody does monogamy better than lesbians with their ability to make deep emotional connections and communication advantages. (If I seem biased as far as emotional monogamy goes, it’s because I am.) And though sexual preference is not a choice, if it’s a long-term, loving relationship you’re looking for, then you have certainly lucked out with the cards you drew.
As for the problems you face finding that relationship to begin with, they would exist regardless. Gay or straight, certain relationship rules just are what they are. It’s true that many gay people think twice about dating someone who has only just come out, but the biggest problem I see here is how you seem to care far more about being loved than you do about loving someone else. This is evident in your desire for a plan… a method… a sure-fire formula… by which just the right mate can be obtained so your happily-ever-after can commence. Being so caught up in the pursuit of the perfect relationship, you have completely lost track of what love actually is; what caring for another is all about. Let me scream this to all people gay or straight: When you are out looking for the “right” match… the perfect fit… you come across as fake and most of the time fake is exactly what you are.
So my advice to you, Tammy, is drop the bull right now and try just being somebody’s friend for a while. Enjoy people for who they are without the expectation of an emotional kickback and you’ll find that a good many of them are really cool to get to know for their own sake. Have your lesbian friends give you some coaching on how to meet people and strike up conversations. If you don’t have any lesbian friends, you’d better make some. They’ll be an invaluable source of guidance and support as you make your way out into a wider world. Go slow, get to know people as people and not the potential providers of all your future happiness and I guarantee you’ll find that relationship soon enough.
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