Throughout our lives we are always warned about the risks of playing with fire. It’s never more true than in the world of dating where it is easy to see the error of our ways after the fact,when we find ourselves sprawled out on the sofa, trying to heal those third degree burns with tubs of ice cream and copious amounts of gin. It’s also easier to offer good advice when you are slightly removed from the situation – we don’t struggle to tell our friends to stay away from the married man or about the perils of dating a mama’s boy – but when it comes to taking our own advice it’s a tough pill to swallow. But is avoiding trouble really the solution to all of a singletons problems? Or do we all need an element of danger to spice things up in our otherwise boring lives?
Not all of life’s dangers are roaring furnaces, sometimes even the most unsuspecting tea light has the potential to do just as much damage. 20/20 hindsight will make any sensible person question their mental state when they embarked on what we thought could be an epic romance with a married man. As in like really? You wanted to throw everything away at the age of 21 to take care of his kids? Get real. In such situations it’s pretty obvious that things would end in disaster so just put it down to you being young and naïve, then move on.
Then there are those instances when things are bit more complex. There are those situations where you thank the universe because it seems you dodged the bullet. But the thing is those bullets didn’t disappear, they’ll be back to hit you when you least expect it. For example, that bad boy that miraculously develops a conscience and decides to friend/sister/daughter zone you. Fine, it’s a bit of a blow to the ego at first but over time you accept the situation and settle for a ‘flirtationship’. It’s not ideal, but it’s a good ego boost if nothing else.
But you see, the danger in these seemingly innocent interactions is that they really aren’t all that innocent and have a habit of escalating, often without you realising. You can kid yourself all you like by telling yourself that that bad boy is now your BFF and it’s the nicest story to come out of Tinder but the truth is it’s NOT. All you’ve gone and done is invest precious time and energy into something you knew full well wasn’t going to amount to much. You’ll only ever admit that you were playing with fire when eventually the day comes when he arrives at the party with another chick thereby ‘ending’ your flirtationship as you look on and cringe as you see history repeating itself. Of course, you told yourself you were mature enough to handle some light and fluffy banter, but we all know there was more to it and the burn is no less painful.
What’s worse about getting burnt by the flame of a candle is that you can’t even scream and shout, cry or bitch and moan about it without looking totally unhinged. Because after all, technically he did nothing wrong and it was you that overestimated your maturity level. All you can do now is put on a brave face, move on and learn that if you do go down that path again (because inevitably you will) that you’ll manage you expectations better.
As we maneuver our way through the big bad world of dating we will be exposed to a whole host of dangers, some more apparent than others. It’s easy for people who are happily sorted in life (or simply settling for mediocre) to look down their nose at these silly singletons who seem to be continuously playing with fire and making mistakes. But I think it’s important to stop and ask ourselves whether taking these risks are indeed a necessary evil if we are ever to succeed in our mission to find Prince Charming? Hmmm… I wonder. Maybe it’s just me but I’ve always felt attracted to those interactions where there is a spark. It’s just that in most cases those sparks have had a habit of becoming raging bush fires.
Rinsers – Thoughts in the comments section below. Do you think that there are always inherent risks when it comes to matters of the heart? Would life just be a little bit boring if we always went for the safe option without chasing those sparks that sometimes force us to play with fire? Tell us your stories in the comments sections below.