How Obsessing over the Small Stuff can ruin your Dating over 40 Experience
Remember Ally McBeal? I loved that show. Yes, her skirts were too short and she was way too skinny and neurotic. But I thought she accurately represented women I knew, including me. She was smart, attractive, accomplished, connected to many friends…and oh so single. She was always trying to find Mr. I Love You or keep her current Mr. I Love You, but it just never worked. (I was rooting for her to end up with Robert Downey, Jr.)
One episode I always remember is this one: She meets this charming and gorgeous lawyer, and he thankfully asks her out. He takes her to a lovely restaurant. At dinner they have stimulating and engaging conversation, sharing big smiles and a few nervous giggles. Ally is falling hard. The love song plays in the background. (You see this guy, la la la la, this guy’s in love with you…)
Uh-oh. Here it comes: a spot of bleu cheese dressing on his chin. Oh no! Not that! Ally takes notice. Ally stares. Ally obsesses. All she sees is the freakin’ bleu cheese. In reality it’s a little dot, but as she becomes more obsessed she starts seeing more and more and MORE bleu cheese! And then, poor gorgeous lawyer man is literally bathed in bleu cheese dressing from head to toe.
Errrrrrk! Music stops playing. Ally takes on the “Oh crap, not another loser” look. She is done with him. B’bye. (You can see part of the scene here at 3.11. They cut the last and best part.)
Oh geez! It was just bleu cheese! In the next scene her dear friend tells her how she seems to find every excuse for it not to work with a man. “You could have just blotted it off,” she tells her. Nope, Ally insists, she has a thing about first impressions. Forevermore, all she will ever see is Mr. Salad Dressing Face.
Okay, I know I don’t have to. But I have to give you my view of the salient Dating over 40 points here.
- Ally is single
- Ally is sitting across from a successful, gorgeous, smart, available, interested man
- What was a dot in reality became a drench in her mind only
- It was just salad dressing!
Honestly, I think Ally is really afraid of intimacy, rejection, ____ (you fill in the blank).
Next week I’ll give you my brilliant advice about how having compassion and realistic expectations (just like a grownup) will change your dating life and bring you closer to happiness. And I have a great tip; you have to know this one.