Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Me, Paranoid?

Should you sense that your date is less than thrilled with you, undoubtedly the question will arise, “Am I right, or am I paranoid?” Good question. Dating is an emotional experience. You’re vulnerable. You’re letting someone you barely know see the real you. Pretty scary stuff. It’s only natural that you might feel a little insecure. You may misread nuances or misinterpret a yawn or a glance at a watch as a sure sign that you’re on the verge of a dating meltdown —especially if you’ve had any dating disasters in the past (who hasn’t?). But this may not be the case at all. Sometimes a yawn really is just insomnia. Glancing at a watch — well, some people need to get up early the next morning, even when they’ve had a great time the night before. So before you write this date off, find out if you really are being paranoid by asking yourself these questions:
  • Was I dreading this date?
  • Did I figure it probably wouldn’t work out before the date even started?
  • Am I trying to decipher the “hidden meaning” in everything my date says?
  • Am I obsessed with how I come off?
  • Does my date keep protesting that he or she was misunderstood?
  • Has anyone ever told me before that I’m oversensitive?
  • Has anyone ever called me “paranoid” before?
  • What’s reality and what’s delusional — do I need a new date or serious medication?
If you answered “yes” to most of the questions, you may need to do a reality check before you dismiss this date. Or you may be too fearful to date at all. See whether the answers you yourself give would make sense if your best friend were telling the story. Would you be calm or dialing for the paramedics? If you wouldn’t see anything all that alarming in these answers if they were your friend’s, you’ve probably passed your own test, and it’s time to shift the focus from you to your date.

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