Serial daters have been around since Casanova, but just because something has been around a while doesn’t mean that it is a particularly helpful presence. In the case of serial dating, it has a destructive influence on both the serial dater as well as the people that he or she is dating.
As Apostolics, we understand that it is essential to find God’s plan for your life, and dating is no exception to that rule. There are several key ways that serial dating undermines this principle.
It Makes Commitment Difficult
At first glance, it is easy to see that serial dating makes committing to one person difficult. However, it is easy to fall into this trap, particularly where online dating is concerned. Dating online is unique in the fact that it perpetually inundates you with pictures of great looking people. Naturally, this might make you more inclined to date them. However, great pictures do not necessarily mean that you have found a great match.
What tends to happen in online dating if your instincts are left unchecked is that you will find yourself in a “dating roulette” game of sorts. Living in New York, I know plenty of men that have their Mondays through Fridays booked solid with first dates, all thanks to popular dating sites.
Apostolics, however, understand that this dating lifestyle is destructive for you and the people you date. For starters, the men or women you are dating will be yet another in your dating pipeline, making it hard for you to discern God’s best for you. As a result, you might just go through the motions, particularly if you have two more dates lined up with people you are “more excited” about seeing.
For the people you are dating, you are inevitably playing with many of their emotions, increasing the likelihood that they will wind up hurt or rejected. The serial dater, on the other hand, will experience no such thing because they are widely playing the field. Not only does this go against Apostolic principles, it just plain goes against the values of being a decent person.
As Apostolics, it is plain to see that serial dating hurts both you and the people you date due to the lack of commitment serial dating entails. However, there are even more ways serial dating is harmful to you and others.
Serial Dating Is an Addiction
Whether it is a dating app where you swipe or a more traditional dating app, serial dating can become addicting. Living in a worldly place such as New York City, I have seen several examples of people that have treated online dating as their social outlet. Instead of spending time with church friends and healthy influences, they spend all of their time dating.
Of course, this is not to say that prudent dating is bad. On the contrary, Apostolics are advised to seek out Christian dating as an option for finding God’s best. The point, here, is that everything needs to have balance. Serial dating tips the scales in such a way that the dating process is an all-consuming one, making it an unsustainable and unhealthy lifestyle.
You’ll Get Used to Making Empty Promises
Serial dating also increases the likelihood of dishonesty. For example, imagine that you have a few dates lined up for your week, including a date on Thursday with a person you have seen a few times. At the same time, you have also been messaging plenty of new women on your dating website. Then, imagine someone that caught your eye being free to have dinner on the Thursday that you are already “booked” for a date (serial dating really can become a job in this manner).
While it would be easy to say that you would do the right thing, the reality is not simple. As previously addressed, serial dating becomes addicting, and part of the thrill of serial dating comes from dating new and exciting people. It should come as no surprise that many serial daters, then, are also extreme flakes.
Serial daters will often make plans, knowing that if something more exciting comes along, they can either make something up or be vague about “something” coming up that requires canceling the plans for the evening.
Serial dating leads to empty promises, and this makes the serial dater an untrustworthy person. Further, it leads to more hurt for the people that a serial dater is seeing. For Apostolics, honesty is a fundamental aspect of living, and this of course extends to dating as well.
How to Overcome Serial Dating
If you find yourself firmly in the serial dater camp or at risk of becoming one, there is one easy tip you can use to date with a more measured and Godly approach. You simply need to know what you are looking for in a potential spouse. Admittedly, this is harder than it sounds, so if you do not know what you are looking for, it is best to wait for God’s timing. You simply are not ready to be dating seriously yet, and there is nothing wrong with that!
However, there are plenty of people that are ready and know what they are looking for, so dating them when you lack the same intentions is both ungodly and disingenuous. Knowing who you truly are, what you are looking for and why you are looking will stop serial dating in its tracks.
For starters, you will have specific criteria in mind for your future spouse, and that automatically eliminates many of the serial dater’s dating pool. Moreover, establishing why you are looking will help you narrow your options further, removing people that are looking for something entirely different or are simply in a different stage of life. Simply put, know yourself and know what you want, and you can overcome the pitfall of serial dating.