Photo Credit: Jewish Press

Dear Dating Coach,

I am dating a nice girl and we really get along. Everything is fine and my family has been pressuring me to get engaged. I’m not sure why I am hesitating, because nothing is wrong. I just always thought I would feel a bit “more” than I do. Is it fine to just feel “fine” about her?

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So So Single

 

Dear So So,

I’m certainly no gourmand. I prefer my toast without the avocado, don’t know why my burger has to be “impossible,” and pick Skippy over almond or cashew butter any day. (Follow me for culinary tips on my blog, Toast Is My Jam. No, don’t do that. There is no blog.) I do, however, draw the line at ready-to-eat meals. I don’t want dinner that has waited for me for months on a shelf, hoping a kind microwave will help it fulfill its destiny. We have a friend that appreciates them, though. Going to a place with hard to access kosher? He is game to grab a couple of boxes to go. Boxed gefilte fish? Done. Shelf stable cholent? No problem! (Engage gag reflex.) Yet, even he, with his iron constitution, will admit that while these are fine on the go, they are not a complete culinary delight. If given the choice, a fresh sizzling steak would usurp his “fine” anytime.

 

I Feel Fine…

Thank you for your letter. While it’s wonderful to meet someone that you get along with so well, it can also be confusing as you measure your progress and connection. Your parents are counting on the time you have spent together as a sign that headway is being made. You agree that nothing is “wrong,” and you like her, but expected to feel “more.” Fine is not bad, your surmise, but is it enough?

 

Might Be Because…

On the dating scale, fine is still a positive. To me it means that you have laid a foundation for growth. You both realize that a connection exists and your hashkafos align. You get along and have not found any distinct deal-breaking flaws in one another. But marrying someone because they are just “fine” is not a kindness to yourself or to them. I think you would be hard-pressed to find any girl who envisions her proposal with, “I guess you are fine. Want to get married?” In the world of marriage and forever, you can do better than fine.

 

I’m Drinking Wine.

Of course, it is possible, that she is simply not the one. Remember then that it is not a gift to marry someone that you are settling for. But before you let go of this very real possibility, give yourself the chance to feel.

More than likely, this means that she is just not the one, yet. Take the time to focus on connection with truly honest conversations, dates created with care, and ways to cultivate a warmer bond. Notice her pretty smile, her laugh, and the care she takes to prepare for your time together. Take note of your feelings and nurture them, as you give her your complete attention when you are together. You may notice that your fine just needed a nudge to get to “spectacular.”

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Henni Halberstam is a Dating and Marriage Coach whose expert advice will help you navigate dating and relationships in order to ensure a successful marriage. You can contact her at hennihalberstam@gmail.com to schedule a phone session.