I am really honored when people feel comfortable asking my opinion. Like others I want to impact individuals around me! I think people ask my opinion on dating more than most subjects lately. Perhaps it's because summer is close by.
What is it that you look for in dating? It may be to combat loneliness or to have physical interaction. It could also be to find that potential partner in life. Whatever the reason is, I think it's important to first ask ourselves the question "Who am I as a single person?"
Inevitably that will bring up some issues; especially for those in the LGBT community! We tend to promote the lifestyle of being with someone. Whether it is a girlfriend/boyfriend, a date, or a partner; our community likes to cater to the couple.
Being single is not a bad place to be! It can be a time of getting to know yourself and realizing your goals. It can be a fun moment in your life of meeting new people and experiencing fresh opportunities! I myself have been single since October of last year and have had some wonderful quality time with new and longtime friends!
The stigma of being single seems to be that you're not attractive. Nonsense!! Singleness is a reflection of choice and circumstance; not your attractiveness! Choice in that you have not made the decision to connect yourself to any one in a romantic way and circumstance in that you may be at a place or time in your life where you are not ready/able to give of yourself in that way.
Who you are as a single person asks whether or not you are healthy in mind, and body. It asks if you have taken the time to go to the next level in your personal development. It brings into question whether you should rather than could give yourself to a person. For years I always heard from my parents and teachers that you will be no good to anyone until you take time for yourself! It's true! Wouldn't you like to give the next person that you date a whole person? One who is vigorous in thought and health! Who you are as a single person is an honest question that takes time to answer.
Some of you reading this may not be single; to you I encourage that you make moments in your daily life to experience personal growth. My former boyfriend Isaiah (Be sure to read his column Out of The Closet right here on ChicagoPride.com) and I would go as far to schedule time apart in order to cultivate other friendships, spend time by ourselves, and take part in activities of personal interest. It always produced the same response, we appreciated each other more and we were better for the other person. Taking that time to be individuals also allowed us in our post boyfriend relationship to the best of friends we are today!
In closing, you might want to ask yourself some of these questions:
Do I know myself well?
What am I doing today to further my personal growth?
Am I in a good place in my health and mind to be giving myself to someone else?
These questions will help you to make the best difference in your life as well as those you fancy! My opinion on dating is just that; my opinion. Like it or not, I always welcome your thoughts!