Oh, geez. I’m gonna be honest. I’m really, really tired of watching my friends have crappy love lives. I mean, you may wonder who I am to judge crappy love lives, considering I’m perpetually single. I’ll answer that like this: if I wanted a guy that badly, I could have one. In fact, I could probably have at least two or three. But I have– and here’s the key– high standards. Either way, I’m really tired of watching girls I know date* d bags. Or even just nice guys in misunderstandings. Whatever. In lieu of watching this for so long, I’ve devised a few dating rules that I live by that might help. Might being the key word. Remember, this is all me and my opinion. Also, keep in mind that, if you follow these rules, they may not even work for you. Also, if they do work, you may be alone a little longer before you find a nice guy. Just saying.

Rules of Dating Happily

  1. HAVE STANDARDS. Make them high. Very high. Don’t even think about settling for less. Loneliness is not a good excuse for lowering your expectations. Like I said, if it were, I wouldn’t be single right now.
  2. If you’re going to have sex, do NOT (notice the bold, italics, and capitalization for emphasis) give it up within a week (or even a few weeks) of knowing the guy and expect him to stick around. If you just let him have it, why should he stick around and try? Hold yourself to a higher standard than that, ladies.
  3. Don’t ever, ever, ever date a guy who says he’s single but has any kind of weird “attachments.” For example, if he’s “on a break,” he’s still taken. If it comes down to it, he’ll probably pick the girl he already has. Or if he has girls writing all over his Facebook calling him “baby” or saying they “miss” him or anything remotely affection and they’re not his mom, sister, aunt, etc., turn around and RUN. He’s bad news.
  4. Ladies, we’re all pretty intelligent here. Don’t date idiots. This should speak for itself, but if you’re dating a guy who’s less intelligent than you, be prepared for a lot of “But I don’t understand! What did I do wrong?” Even if it’s blatantly wrong, and everyone sees it, the dumb ones just don’t. I’ve watched it happen. Trust me.

Okay, so there are only four, but trust me. I date by those rules. It makes dating harder, but it also makes it more rewarding. You spend more time single, but the times you spend in relationships are much more special and mean a lot more in the end. You get hurt less, and when you do get hurt, sometimes it might even be worth it. I speak from experience. And I’m not saying I make perfect decisions in dating. I make very imperfect decisions about guys a lot of the time, but I’ve watched this stuff happen. When you see your friends hurt over and over because they make certain bad decisions time and again, you start to see some solutions. I just hope this keeps some of you from getting hurt.

*I use the word “date” very loosely here. I’m aware that dating isn’t always as cut and dried as I make it sound, and there are a lot of times that people share affection without dating at all (i.e., hookups, friends with benefits, etc.). I don’t really think those things are wise emotionally or anything, but if you enjoy that stuff, by all means, knock yourself out.

**Also, this is my disclaimer: I’m not saying this works flawlessly. You may still get hurt. You may still get screwed over. You may still end up with d bags. This is just what works for me.