Someone commented on one of my TikTok videos asking me if I felt it was necessary to take a break from dating while they work on themselves.
I responded by telling them that it's a matter of personal preference.
When I first learned about anxious attachment and realised all of my dating faults, I told myself that I'd continue to date and apply what I learned as I went. I carried on that way for over a year.
The upside of dating while going through your self-growth journey is making mistakes and learning from them in real-time.
And if you're dating someone who is emotionally supportive and can help you along your journey, then it's easier to continue dating while trying to figure yourself out.
Unfortunately for me, most of the men I encountered weren't that great. Better than the ones I'd met before, but still not great. I knew something needed to change. That's when I considered taking a break from dating.
When I first decided to take a break from dating, even though I wasn't actively using Hinge, I didn't delete my profile.
So when a match came through, I figured, if God didn't want me to keep dating, he wouldn't send me matches.
My new match and I talked in-app for a few days before exchanging numbers.
We made plans to meet and confirmed said plans a few hours before we were meant to see each other.
He stood me up. I guess it was the devil that sent him and not God after all.
I'd never been stood up before and I'd be lying if I said it didn't bother me. I was more frustrated and confused than angry or hurt. Like, how hard would it have been to just cancel?
Anyway, I took getting stood up as my new sign from God and made a promise to myself that I was going to focus on myself for the next 12 months.
Here's why not dating was the best decision for me.
I had time to make peace with all my poor choices. I honestly think I was a few bad dating experiences away from becoming the jaded, man-hating woman that 20 year old me used to pray I would never become. I was becoming increasingly frustrated with "getting it wrong" and tired of men. The truth of it is that I needed to take responsibility for all the poor choices I made in the past when it came to picking men. When I stopped dating I was able to objectively look at the choices I've made throughout my dating life. There's no shame or anger and that feeling of "why can't I have love too?" is long gone.It's not that I can't have love, it's that the choices I made weren't conducive to me finding it. I understand my past choices, made peace with them and learned what I could from the mistakes that I've made.