No matter how much of a gamer you are, let’s face it, after a while all of us can get tired of the games.  It is exhausting to always have your guard up, to always feel like you are on the hunt, and to always be negotiating for the best terms possible while you are trading assets.  Unfortunately, the more tired you become, the more tempted you might be to lower your standards. And once you do that, let me just warn you, it’s a very easy ride down a very slippery slope, and the slow incremental decline might go unnoticed for a while until sadly one day you realize you truly have hit rock bottom.
We have all dated someone that has left us wondering in the end, “WTF, how did I let things get so bad?”  And I know it sucks at the moment, but let me just say this is actually a good thing– because hopefully it will force you to take a break, regroup, and have you ponder (1) what do you truly need? and (2) what are things you absolutely won’t negotiate away in the future?
The clearer you are about what your own agenda is in life and love, the greater your chances of obtaining your goals.  It is all about knowing what you want, and then being your own best advocate for what you believe you deserve.  Personally, I believe there are some basic minimum standards we should all be able to agree are necessary in a life partner: (1) trust-worthy; (2) respectful; (3) kind; (4) generous; (5) able to give and receive love.   Of course there are many other factors that each of us might need but that is simply a matter of personal preferences, which can vary greatly, and over time you may find your preferences will change without ever trading off on those bare minimum standards.
So, if you find you’ve really hit the bottom of the barrel in the dating world, don’t despair.  It is a very polluted pool to swim in, and sometimes for your own sanity, you will need to get out and detox.  This could take 3-9 months, at least that is my pattern, and just make sure you use it wisely.  It’s not about having a drawn out pity party at home– rather it is about using the time to reflect on your vision for the future and the kind of person you want to share it with going forward.
We can all make a conscious choice to not repeat certain behaviors, and make a commitment to ourselves to less of a gamer if we want a serious and meaningful relationship.  The key is to think about the kind of person you really want to attract first before you head out on your quest for Mr. or Mrs. Right.
By Regina A. DeMeo, Esq.