By Kelly Rouba for GalTime.com
Recently, I went to my friend Laurie’s house to watch the season finale of Bachelor Pad. (Yes, for some reason, we enjoy these types of cheesy reality shows.) And while we were watching the heartbreak that ensued on screen between several couples, I asked her how she knew her husband was the one she wanted to marry.
In short, she replied that she knew he genuinely loved her and that he was honest, caring, supportive, and faithful. She also knew he was a family man, and they now have a son they both adore. I guess Laurie’s answer that night was obvious, but hearing it struck a nerve.
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After months of online dating, I was feeling drained from meeting guys who weren’t anything like what they claimed to be on their profiles and many of them had more baggage than I could have ever imagined. However, a couple months ago, I began dating one man who proved to be a complete gentleman and his profile was true to life. Yet even though he was attentive, reliable, and charming (three attributes I look for), I wasn’t sure that special spark was there.
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Because I found him to be a breath of fresh air after many disappointing encounters, I continued to see him. Each time, he won me over a little bit more and my friends and family made it known they were rooting for him. But I still wasn’t sure I felt a romantic connection and then along came another man who just blew me away!
After our first date, I was sure he was Mr. Right. But within no time, Mr. Right quickly became Mr. Wrong. Not long after dating him, I saw a scary side and knew there’d be no future for us. This experience along with Laurie’s words of wisdom opened my eyes quite a bit and suddenly it became clear that the man I had been seeing all along was exactly the type of man I wanted in my life.
Once I realized this, I felt a tremendous sense of contentment and happiness come over me, and I was able to give so much more to the relationship. Shortly after that, we decided to become exclusive and I know that was the right decision.
Although every situation is different when it comes to dating, there are times when it’s worth considering going on a second date with a guy even if he doesn’t quite sweep you off your feet the first time. Stacie Ikka, founder of the dating consultancy Sitting In A Tree (www.sittinginatree.com), agrees.
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“Oftentimes, it takes several dates to forge a connection with someone,” Ikka says, adding, “One of the tips that I give to my clients is to make a concerted effort during a first date to find five attributes that they really like about the person sitting across from them.”