General Dating Questions/Help please!!
I am 23 and originally from a larger metropolitan area, but in August I moved a few hours away to a small town for my first job. I am an elementary teacher. I adore my students and work with some fabulous people, but my dating life completely sucks. I NEED some testosterone in my life ASAP, or I am going to go crazy! The only people of the male species that I see on a regular basis are students, a few parents, and some of my coworkers' husbands. It's kind of pathetic and embarrassing.
The town that I live in is quite small, so it's not like there are tons of single men in my age group floating around, but even if there were I don't know how to meet them anyway. When I moved here I didn't know anyone, and even now I really just know the people that I work with. There is one other new teacher my age that I spend a lot of time with, and we hang out with another teacher and her husband pretty frequently, but that's about it. Literally everyone else that I work with is at least 30-35, female, married, and has children #or grandchildren#. This place is not exactly a Mecca for young single men! Hell, there really aren't many youngish females to hang out with here either. I am pretty independent and don't mind going out on my own to do things, but I don't even know where to start. Again, I LOVE my students and most of the people I work with, and I feel very blessed to even have a job working in my field... but in some ways, this sucks.
I have considered online dating as a way to connect with people, however that just sounds miserable. I feel like I am way too young to have to resort to that. But I guess I would be willing to try if I have to. UGH. Help, please???
Unfortunately, internet dating is one of the 3 worst ways there are to meet someone. The reality is; you need very specialized skills to do well online but that isn't going to be a great experience by any stretch.
Your local town is small but you didn't tell me how far you are away from other areas. Consider this: if you meet someone who is an hour or more away from you that makes them a long-distance relationship and (equally unfortunate) LDR's simply don't work out. If you are closer than an hour away from another city you can consider that to be part of your "extended target area" but how to meet someone there?
The key to meeting someone within your target area is "networking". You actually have a lot of ways of doing this you probably don't even realize. Let me give you a few to get you started but be creative and add to this list. If you really consider your options (and opportunities) I'll bet you'll be amazed at just how many there are - even for small-town girl!
First, let your friends, family and co-workers know you'd like to meet someone! Most people don't do this and assume that; if you're single, your friends must know you're looking. In fact, people get busy with their own lives and don't often consider others - even their friends or family. Even in a small town your friends and family know people you don't. If they are aware you're looking to meet someone, it'll turn on that part of their brains to think about possibilities.
Of course, when they suggest you meet someone don't pre-judge anyone. It's just as important to go out on dates (and thus, learn that skill) as it is to find the right person. The first person you meet might not be the guy you wind up in a relationship with, but then again, maybe he will be. As well, if he isn't the guy, he may KNOW the guy! Think possibilities.
Next, consider your industry. As a teacher there are many opportunities to meet others in your industry who are looking to meet someone too. Maybe your immediate circle of contacts aren't options but an extended circle likely will be. Thus, get involved. Go to conferences and participate with not just your local school but other schools within your district and even other districts. Keep reaching out to expand your "sphere of influence" and as that bubble grows so will your opportunities.
Another option are peripheral industries and even non-peripheral industries. By those I mean other outside networks that may or may not be directly related to the school district. For example, there are vendor organizations that provide products and services to the district. These have lots of people within them as well and act as another network you have access to.
For outside or non-peripheral industries; consider businesses that cater to the local government rather than the school district itself. There are many of these organizations as well with tons of great people in them.
Next, look at other non-school related organizations. Do you have any hobbies? If not, why not!? There are tons and tons of great, fun things to do and explore. Every single fun thing you can think of has outside organizations that help connect like-minded people - another source of single guys.
What about local civic groups? Every city and town in America has groups like Lions, Kiwanis, Rotary, Chambers of Commerce and others who support the needs of the community. Many people believe that these are business-only organizations. Not so! Anyone can join them, get involved, start building a better community for everyone - and meet some great people in the process.
Consider too that there are even online organizations that aren't "dating sites" yet help single people to connect. One example is meetup.com. This organization has tons and tons of groups dedicated to just about everything you can imagine: travel, dancing, hiking, astronomy, philosophy, etc., etc. They are FULL of single people just like you who share a common interest. There are others as well that you can find with just a little searching online.
Well Kat, there you go - maybe 10 or more different opportunities to meet someone. The one thing we both know is that the "someone" you're looking for isn't right there in your living room and that means you need to expand up were you are and what you're doing. If you do that however, with a little creativity, you're going to meet a TON of eligible bachelors just as interested in meeting a great girl as you are in meeting a great guy.
Think possibilities. Think opportunities. They're out there.
Dr. Dennis W. Neder
Producers: "BAM! TV" and “Love and Sex”
Publishers: "Being a Man in a Woman's World I, II & III”