What to do if you over-romanticise potential relationships

Paisley Gilmour
·4-min read

From Cosmopolitan

If you're the kind of person who goes on one date with someone and starts planning your future together, imagining the holidays you'll go on, the home you'll live in together and the many laughs and shags you'll have in years to come, you're not alone. Fantasising about our future relationships is normal and fine, as long as we don't let it cause us emotional harm down the line. People who over-romanticise potential relationships - for example, when they're at the messaging stage before they've even met the person - are sharing their struggles and how they've learned to not do this, and to ultimately protect themselves.

1. "It's a very easy trap to fall into. Unfortunately, it can lead to a lot of unnecessary pain and suffering. I stopped doing this by simply enjoying the current stage of my relationship. I had to learn that its OK to just have fun and see where things go. Every guy I meet isn't going to be the Romeo to my Juliet, and that's OK. Just sit back and enjoy the ride." [via]

2. "Easier said than done, but try to stay in the present moment. If you’re in a fantasy about the future, how can you fully enjoy the momentary moments with your love interest?" [via]

Photo credit: Oscar Wong
Photo credit: Oscar Wong

3. "Diversify your portfolio. I broke that cycle by casually dating multiple people at once (up to five at one point). Between all the dates, hookups, and text conversations I had to be extremely in the moment so as not to mix up the different people I was talking to, and I never had time to get overly attached to any of them and invent crazy fantasy futures with them. It made for much healthier relationships than I had ever had before. And, bonus: one of them turned into the happiest healthiest relationship I've ever had." [via]

4. "It's fine to think about this, but you have to keep in mind that the person in your mind and the person in real life might not be the same. Be wary of falling in love with the image you have of someone, rather than the actual person themselves. This can be the case if you don't see the other much and you rely more on chatting. I usually snap out of it the moment I see them again. If I don't immediately feel the same butterflies IRL as when chatting with them, I love the image of them and not the actual person." [via]

5. "It’s normal to fantasise, but try not to give people credit they haven’t earned yet. Reality > potential." [via]

Photo credit: ljubaphoto
Photo credit: ljubaphoto

6. "Just remember everyone puts their best foot forward at first so sometimes you get a version of the person that has little to do with their real self. It takes time to get to know someone. Familiarise yourself with, and don’t dismiss, red flags." [via]

7. "This is something I still work on every day. My tendency to over-romanticise potential relationships was inherently tied to my lack of self worth, and my constant need to chase volatility. My attachment style was previously rather anxious, so over-romanticising potential relationships/getting lost in the fantasy early on was an escape for my feelings of unworthiness. The thing that catalysed me changing was going to therapy and counselling. Through therapy I learned some very key things: My perception of myself was very negative and hurtful. Securely attached people don't not feel sad when a potential relationship fails. They also don't not fantasise. The difference, is that securely attached people don't connect a breakup to their feelings of self worth.

Photo credit: FoxysGraphic
Photo credit: FoxysGraphic

8. "I started to become very less anxiously attached to potential new partners. I wasn't hanging off of their every text, I wasn't becoming as emotionally hyped and shattered, and I was able to just let people go. And it feels incredible. I feel like I now see people for who they are, and I've been able to take the rose tinted glasses off. I am now able to be excited by a potential new date, while not using it to escape something else I'm feeling." [via]

9. "I have you haven't ever watched the show Crazy Ex Girlfriend, watch it. You won’t feel like a weirdo anymore. I feel like a lot of people can actually relate to the main character (except she’s extreme)." [via]

10. "I implement boundaries and open discussion about expectations very early on. It has worked with helping me anyway." [via]

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