Photo Credit: Jewish Press

Dear Dating Coach,

Now that Pesach is over, I am supposed to start dating. I had discussed this with my parents a few months ago, but I thought I would feel more prepared. I clearly know nothing about dating and just thinking about it makes me nervous. Is it wrong to push off dating until after the summer? Perhaps I will have a better handle on the process then?

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Date Late

 

Dear Late,

There is something special that unites us as a people. A vital component that reminds us that we are more alike than different. Together we honor and cherish this connection. Finally! We have something we truly can all agree on. I know, its obvious. You know of course. We deeply and truly love (and I mean LOVE) the snooze button. (What did you expect me to write?) Something that understands us and our need for just five more minutes (times five). Because everyone knows, “You snooze, you win.”

Any unknown can be scary. Not knowing what to expect or how to achieve in any new area can give us pause. You thought you would be ready to start dating, but now that the time has arrived, you are second-guessing your decision. Time, you believe, is the answer. Perhaps summer will offer you the clarity you need, or maybe after Sukkos? Sure, it might be easier to delay dating, but is it right?

 

A Plan

A plan will offer you a better perspective and will give you the confidence to move forward. Of course, you worry because this is all new to you. A few pointers however, will offer you the guidance you need to get started. Direction, and someone you can trust to confide in and to offer you advice when you date will allow you to date successfully and with purpose.

How you present yourself is key. Both your character and your appearance should be refined to reflect who you are accurately and to your highest standard. Take the time to reflect on how you would like to be perceived and then make sure that this is how others see you.

Dating takes effort. Ensure that the date will be enjoyable for both of you by picking a suitable location, having reliable transportation, and being solicitous throughout. Do not pick her up for a first date and ask her what she wants to do or where she wants to go. Have this planned and arranged so she knows that you have given the date the attention it deserves.

Finally, be fully committed to every date. If you would like, you can think of topics of conversation before you go out, of things you would like to share, and others you would like to know. Then, focus completely on the person you are with and make a full and genuine attempt to get to know her with interest and enthusiasm. This focus and care will encourage your date to connect with you.

Your ability to present yourself well, your effort in planning your dates, and your full commitment are key to dating successfully. No need to snooze, as you are armed now with the knowledge you need to find your bashert.

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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.