For some, one way of moving on from a previous relationship is to start dating someone new. While there is some disagreement on how advisable or effective a method of moving on this is, there are still countless people who cast themselves back into the deep end and resume dating. The question for these brave souls is: how many dates does it take before they can feel they’ve moved on?
Besides this core question, we’ll also take a look at some other issues surrounding the idea of “dating to move on” and whether or not it’s really a good idea for most people.
What Does “Move On” Really Mean?
Let’s start with a clearer definition of what we mean when we say “move on.” This can mean different things to different people, and the degree to which one moves on in any given time or in any situation can vary greatly. So, when we say “move on” we are largely referring to that state of mind when you can do all of the following:
- Not allow the pain and emotion of a previous breakup govern or control one’s life/actions
- Feel comfortable and ready to be in an intimate relationship with someone new
- Abandon previous negative emotions and obsessions with a previous relationship
In our view, if you can satisfy these 3 basic criteria, then you have “moved on” from a previous split.
Using Dating as a Way to Move On
In a previous blog we talked about whether or not using dating to move on was a good and effective method, or if it was perhaps ill-advised. Our conclusion in the end was that for those who have taken the proper time to process the raw emotion left behind at the end of a breakup, it could be a good way to move on, as long as such dating activities weren’t being used for some petty personal end such as revenge on an ex.
One way to get started with dating as a means to moving on, is by signing up for a dating site. We’ve done the heavy lifting and compiled a list of the best dating sites currently available.
With that in mind, and for those who are perhaps in a favorable position to use dating to move on, how many dates will it take? How many dates will it take to move past an ex and find joy and hope for the future with someone new? We’ll look at some different scenarios below:
Dating Someone You’ve Already Been Crushing On
In this scenario, you might be dating someone new that you’ve already admired from a distance for some time, or that you met recently and instantly felt a connection with and have been crushing on since. In this situation where there is a strong and mutual attraction, we would say that even in just a few dates — 3 or 4 at the most — you’d be in a position where you felt quite ready to move on.
Having a genuine connection and attraction to someone that isn’t related in any way to a previous person you had a relationship with is a good way to be sure of moving on in a healthy and happy way. It also means that no one involved is likely to get hurt, which can easily happen in those situations where people are using dating merely as a weapon against an ex.
Going on a Blind Date
Let’s now consider a situation where a friend, colleague or family member has set you up on a date with someone new to you. Can this work? Sure! Going on a blind date can be the first step into something really exciting and new. When it works, it serves as a kind of pleasant surprise as you realize that you can indeed see and date other people without being consumed with thoughts about your ex and your previous relationship.
Let’s say you go on a blind date with someone new, who you like but you don’t really hit it off with romantically, then a single date can be enough as a way of moving on from a previous relationship. That’s the magic and power of a blind date when one is wallowing in the past. It doesn’t even have to go well as a romantic exercise for it to have positive effects in our lives.
If you do like your blind date and you continue seeing them, then if you get to 4-5 dates, you should have reached a point where you can say that you’ve moved on from your previous relationship.
Dating Someone New Who You Weren’t Immediately Attracted To
Another scenario that can sometimes emerge after a breakup is that people “reconsider” those others in their lives whose advances they’d previously rejected, or with whom they previously felt no romantic attraction. It can emerge as the result of self-reflection, especially if you’ve had a string of break-ups with the same types of people, forcing yourself to wonder if you should change your entire approach to dating.
If you have genuine and well-reasoned motives for dating someone like this, then give yourself the green light and see how things go. However, we predict that it might take a bit longer than the above scenarios when it comes to getting past a previous relationship. You will likely have to allow for additional time for you to get to know the individual, and then discover (or not) something more profound you like about them.
In all, it will likely take at least 5-6 dates with this person for it to become something that can eclipse the feelings of a previous relationship. But, it can and does happen, and can be a very rewarding experience for those who have the patience and open mind necessary to benefit from it.
Above All, Ask Yourself: Is Dating to Move On Right For Me?
When thinking about using any kind of dating scenario as a part of a wider plan to move past a previous relationship, you should proceed with caution. Only those who have properly processed the raw feelings left by a breakup, and have had time to really consider what they want are likely good candidates for “dating to move on.” For these people, it might only take a few dates for them to really feel as though they have turned a corner.
Should any negative feelings be lurking in one’s motivations for seeking dates to move on from a previous relationship, then those people need to stop and reflect. Making your ex feel bad, or “scoring points” against your ex in any way is absolutely not a good reason for dating someone, and will leave both you and your date worse off for the experience.