I’ve lost track of the number of times senior men and women have told me they felt it was okay to lie about age in their online dating profiles. If I had to give a percentage to seniors who believe...
6 Reasons To Open Your Heart To Love
By Ken Solin
Senior daters live in a cynical world in which open hearted dating might seem too risky. After all, what right-minded senior would be foolish enough to date with an open heart and risk getting hurt? The answer is every senior who is smart enough and strong enough to know that the no risk no reward paradigm applies to dating.
When you decide to begin dating again, you truly need to open your heart. Here are 6 reasons why:
A relationship that isn’t openhearted won’t last for longer than it takes for paint to dry. It’s impossible for someone to get to know someone else intimately if his or her heart is closed off. That’s a brand of defensive dating that results in a lose-lose situation. But should you open your heart to every person that shows up at your doorstep? Absolutely not, that would be foolish, but if you meet someone you feel has real partner potential, it’s all right to start slowly sharing your feelings with him or her. Just keep in mind that sharing too much too soon can easily overwhelm someone. My point is that letting someone into your life and sharing your thoughts is not easy, but essential for the relationship to grow. Learn the dynamics of the relationship and be open-hearted at your own pace, as long as you are willing to do so.
An open heart is giving someone a passkey to take a deep look inside to determine how he or she feels about your potential. Looking under the hood of a car is an apt metaphor. There’s no halfway measure. You’re either willing to be openhearted or you’re not, and if you’re not you’re wasting your time and your dates’ time as well.
An open-heart means becoming vulnerable, which for many seniors, and men in particular, is so off-putting and frightening it feels impossible. Being vulnerable with a man or woman you’re getting to know does involve some risk. If that person is emotionally unconscious or inexperienced and doesn’t respect the value of what you share they might use what you shared in a vulnerable moment against you. Of course that’s a serious betrayal that no senior should risk repeating with that person. For that reason, you should only be open-hearted when you feel like the partner is able to understand, support and be sensitive about what you share.
It’s smart to let a love interest take a tour of your soul. Let them see the real you, the good and the bad, the pride and the shame, your victories and your failures, and your strengths and your weaknesses. This open-heartedness is the only manner in which someone can evaluate your potential and know you on a deep enough level to want to embrace you, either because of or in spite of your issues. At the end of the day, you are looking for a partner who you will be able to feel comfortable around, a partner who will accept you for who you really are. So let them have a look of what that actually means.
4. Create Trust
Long-term relationships depend on a couple’s ability to remain openhearted through the typical ups and downs every relationship experiences. How can couples accomplish this? The answer is trust.
If both partners honor each other’s open hearts by listening to each other’s feelings without judgments or opinions about them, the relationship will remain an openhearted, trusting one. What’s acceptable when hearing a partner’s feelings that cause you some amount of pain is letting him or her know how what they shared makes you feel, which isn’t the same as judging their feelings.
5. Break The Logjam
Being openhearted isn’t second nature for some seniors, many of whom didn’t grow up in homes where being emotionally open was acceptable. This is a stumbling block in the beginning for some seniors who might still feel the sting inflicted when they tried to talk about their feelings as young boys or girls. For these seniors in particular becoming openhearted is a slower, but certainly doable process. Letting go of past, negative feelings is critical for opening your heart.
6. Allay Fears
Fear stands in the way of open-heartedness, fear of rejection if a partner considers what you share too difficult to handle, fear of appearing weak, fear of sharing too much or too little, and other fears too numerous to list. Fear can be paralyzing and prevent peoples from trusting each other enough to be emotionally honest.
But facing our fears together in a relationship brings a couple closer if they’re able to accept each other’s trepidations around it rather than judge it. When one partner shares their fear about something that’s occurring in a relationship and the other partner says they can feel that person’s fear and respect them for sharing it, both partners will feel safe about remaining open-hearted and honest.
Respect, honor, trust, and vulnerability, play equal parts in creating an open-hearted relationship. When both partners behave in a manner conducive to continued open-heartedness a relationship can grow into something special, something that will give us peace and comfort that we’ve have a partner for our life journey.
Ready to open your heart to love? Get started by choosing a senior online dating site that will help you find your best match and enjoy your dating experience.