The Pattern: You lock eyes across a crowded room and feel magnetically drawn to him. Your heart races, your breath catches in your chest, and all you want to do is rip his clothes off. Or, on your first date, you already feel like you’ve known him forever. You’re so comfortable, and giddy that at last you’ve found a guy who you can really be yourself with. He laughs at your jokes! He hangs on your every word! He thinks you’re charming and adorable! There is never a lull in the conversation; you could talk for hours and hours so you do, and your date extends from a having one drink into the night and maybe even the next day. This is it! you think. He’s The One!
How To Break It: The problem with this pattern is that while emotional intensity and physical attraction are electrifying, they’re not love and definitely don’t mean that this person is your one and only soul mate. All this excitement and attraction can blind you from seeing red flags that could be popping up all over the place. Also, guys who come on really strong at the beginning tend to be the ones who shortly thereafter, disappear altogether. As good as it feels to have someone adore you, he doesn’t actually know you yet. And as for marathon dates: don’t have them. Keep your first few dates confined to a shorter period of time so as to avoid that We talked all night! high, followed by the Where the fuck did he go? low. Remind yourself that sex isn’t love, emotional intensity isn’t even love, and love at first sight is for rom-coms. You need to slow down and really get to know this person. And that, unfortunately, takes time.