9 Adults Share What They Wish They Knew About Dating When They Were Younger

When you’re first starting to date, it’s easy to overcomplicate things or get super dramatic over small situations, like when bae doesn’t text you back fast enough or you get in a tiny disagreement. That’s why it’s good to get advice from more experienced people who have some much-needed perspective on dating. Of course you’re fully capable of figuring it all out on your own, but let’s face it: those who have been through it just might have some tips you won’t be able to pick up on yet. They can help remind you of the important things, like that you might not end up with your first love, or that all of those glaring flaws you think you have are mostly in your head.

I’ll admit that I made a lot of mistakes when I started dating (which is also how you learn!). I got too swept up in the other person and didn’t maintain enough of my own identify. This made our eventual breakup much harder than it needed to be. Instead of being open to dating other people and finding out what I needed in a partner, I obsessed over my ex and rejected anyone new. If I could go back, I would have approached dating much differently. And maybe, if I had listened to the more experienced people telling me what to do, I would have been better off. But I was stubborn, so I didn’t. Learn from me!

If you’re open to hearing it, here’s some advice from older, more datingexperienced people on this Reddit thread that they wish they could give their younger selves about dating:

There's No Need To Rush

SaracensFlanker: "Don't be so keen to settle down into monogamous relationships, or long-distance relationships, or any kind of serious relationship until you know what you're going to be looking for.

When I was a teenager I could have got with a lot of people who I rejected out of insecurity, or who came along while I was with someone else, or who were simply the right person at the wrong time. Safeguarding your freedom to experiment with whoever you want whenever you want is the most important thing you can do."

Source: iStock

Don't Fear Rejection

djc6535: "If someone is particularly cruel in turning you down, that's okay. It's not a reflection on you, it's a reflection on them. You wouldn't have been happy dating that person anyway."

Some can take rejection very personally, when in reality it has very little to do with you. Knowing that everyone has to deal with rejection and that you'll go through it often in your life makes it less of a big deal.

Source: iStock


BigIrishBalls: "A lot of the time it's just not going to work out, and that's okay. Try to have fun and don't invest too much, especially not quickly. You should take your time dating someone- there's no rush with these things.

Just relax. Enjoy. Don't get too serious so soon, otherwise you might find you have incompatible aspects in the relationship- it's harder to break up when it's serious."

Source: iStock

There Are Two Things You Need

nothrowaway4me: "Relationships are a two step verification, first there must be physical attraction, and second there must be emotional compatibility. If you have the looks but lack the personality compatible with the person in question, the attraction will fade. If you have the personality but not the looks, the attraction won't happen at all."

Too often we settle for one or the other because we're so excited about the concept of being in a relationship. Being truly compatible is more complicated than a simple attraction.

Source: iStock

Focus On Yourself

the_tortfeasor: "I wish I hadn't focused on finding someone who liked me and rather focused on making myself into someone that people liked."

This doesn't mean changing yourself in order for people to be romantically interested in you, it means putting the focus on you. Doing things that make you happy, staying healthy, and feeling good about the way you look should be priorities over just complaining that you can't get into a relationship.

Source: iStock

Don't Overcomplicate It

ShenLo1009: "That all you have to do is go up and ask someone out. That's it. 'Hey, interested in going to a movie?' That's all you have to do."

If you're obsessing over someone and analyzing every little interaction, you're driving yourself crazy for no reason. Just ask the other person out and move on if they say no!

Source: iStock

Stop Obsessing Over Your Body

wallace_waffles: "Don't be so self-conscious about your body!"

I used to be so hard on myself about my body. Looking back, I know that I looked great! I should have been happy with the way I looked instead of constantly trying to hide myself.

Source: iStock

You Are Enough

ElCuloTeAbrocho: "Looking back, I know that there was no 'complex and secret way to behave in front of my crush'- just being myself would have been plenty."

Source: iStock

Hotness Doesn't Equal Good Sex

iggybdawg: "Quality of sex does not correlate strongly with how hot the other person is."

It's easy to only care about looks, but that doesn't necessarily mean that you're going to have a great time in bed.

Source: iStock

Did you find any of this advice helpful? Do you agree? Let me know in the comments below!

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