50 Simple Truths About Dating In Your Twenties To Remember When You’re Feeling Discouraged


1. There is no right way to meet someone.

2. Some people will find their person and be married by twenty-three. Others will date around for ten or fifteen years before they find the right person. Neither situation is better or worse than the other.

3. Nobody is perfect, but everyone deserves to be with someone who treats them with respect, care, loyalty, and love.

4. Breakups may happen and they will hurt dearly.

5. But they are also helping to make you into the person you’re meant to become.

6. It’s hard not to let other people’s opinions about your love life clog your brain. But it’s your life to live, not theirs.

7. Soulmates aren’t a thing that happen instantly and magically. Soulmates become soulmates after years and years of commitment, hard work, selflessness, and difficult choices.

8. Weddings are beautiful, sweet, and very special. But they’re also expensive, they last less than twenty-four hours, and they cause a lot of stress. Don’t lose yourself in the quest for a dream wedding, because they don’t exist.

9. Even those whose love lives seem perfect and fairytale-like on social media are facing demons.

10. Treat others how you want to be treated should always be remembered, especially now. If you don’t want to be ghosted, or mistreated, or dumped via text message, don’t do it to anyone else.

11. You will never find someone that embodies every single thing you have on your ‘ideal partner’ checklist.

12. But there is nothing wrong with having standards and believing that you deserve someone wonderful.

13. Don’t drown your own relationship by obsessively comparing it to the relationships of others. You never know what’s happening behind closed doors.

14. In your teenage and college years, your idea of romance probably includes roses, fancy nights out on the town, and a lot of cheesy Pinterest boards.

15. But as you get older, your definition of what’s romantic will change, and that’s okay. Suddenly, them helping you with your taxes, or never letting go of your hand during your grandparent’s funeral, or giving you a pep talk when you have a bad case of Sunday night anxiety is the sweetest thing in the world. Your idea of true love will become more realistic, and more beautiful, as you grow through adulthood.

16. You can’t change someone who doesn’t want to change. You’re better off just letting them go – you’ll save yourself a lot of heartbreak, and time, in the long run.

17. Always trust your gut.

18. Fighting can be good for you and your significant other, if it’s done in a healthy and respectful way.

19. You’re exactly where you’re supposed to be right now.

20. If you don’t like where you are right now, figure out how you can gain a positive out of it, even if that positive is just ‘gaining a new perspective.’ In twenty years from now, you’ll look back at this time in your life and understand why it was necessary for you to be where you currently are.

21. Settling down just for the sake of settling down will only lead to trouble down the road. You are far better off as a single 33-year-old than as an unhappily married 33-year-old who thinks they married the wrong person.

22. Real love is much more complicated, challenging, and difficult than it is on television and in the movies. So there’s no need to be disheartened if your love life feels a lot different than that of  your favorite fictional character.

23. Dating a commitment-phobe is only going to lead to heartache. Run in the opposite direction. If you were going to be the one who broke the spell, it would have happened already.

24. Put love out into the world and you’ll receive it back. It won’t always necessarily be in a romantic form, but you’ll feel it one way or another.

25. If you’re single and sick of it, remember that this is your time to figure out who you are on your own. Better to be alone and certain of who you are, than stuck in a relationship that you don’t know how to get out of (because you’re unsure of who you are without the other person).

26. Being vulnerable and open to rejection, though terrifying, is one of the very best things you can do for yourself.

27. Dating is never, ever easy and it’s perfectly okay to feel frustrated at times, as long as you don’t let that frustration take over your everyday attitude.

28. Finding love isn’t supposed to be simple. If it was, we’d all be married to the first person we laid eyes on after going through puberty.

29. Never underestimate the power of your favorite upbeat song to lift your spirits when you’re feeling crappy about your situation.

30. Everyone inside and outside the dating pool has insecurities – especially the person whom you’d least expect.

31. When you’re having doubts about someone, picture how you feel about them at the end of the day, behind closed doors, when nobody else’s opinion can creep in to touch you guys. That will help give you some perspective.

32. Anyone can fall in love when things are simple, easy, and blissful. But the real person you want to be with is the one you think you can take on a mortgage with, the one who will hold you when you lose your parents someday, and the one who will stick by your side when things are really, really shitty.

33. There’s a difference between being alone and being lonely. Figure out how to enjoy your own company, it’s possible.

34. The person who needs to constantly remind you of how happy they are in their relationship is probably not that happy in their relationship.

35. If you’re going through a rough phase right now, just hang on; you will climb out of it.

36. You do not owe anyone an explanation as to why you are single.

37. The love of your life will help you get through your most difficult moments, but they will never automatically fix all of your problems for you.

38. Being in a relationship does not validate your existence.

39. A date does not have to be expensive to be incredible.

40. Looks will fade. Money can go away in an instant. Pay closest attention to how someone makes you feel.

41. You will not automatically be luckier in love by losing those fifteen pounds you consistently berate yourself for.

42. Jealousy is poison and will get you nowhere.

43. Pinterest wedding boards are a slippery slope, “secret” or not.

44. It helps to think of dating as looking for ‘your partner’ instead of ‘the one.’

45. It’s better to be with someone who can make you smile on a rainy day than it is to be with someone incredibly attractive.

46. Love makes your life better and happier in an infinite number of ways, but it is not the source of ultimate fulfillment.

47. The heart will not heal in a day, but it is capable of healing. Remember that the next time it feels like a breakup is trying to snap you in two.

48. Don’t compare where you stand to where every other person you know stands – there’s too many other factors involved and you will never come out of it with any solid conclusion.

49. Take the advice of your friends and loved ones to heart, but don’t forget that at the end of the day, you are the only one who can make decisions for yourself.

50. Everybody’s love story is going to be different. And nobody wins more than anyone else. Thought Catalog Logo Mark

About the author

Kim Quindlen

I’m a staff writer for Thought Catalog. I like comedy and improv. I live in Chicago. My Uber rating is just okay.

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