Dating Mistakes: Don’t Be The Hero

I was sitting in my therapist cool office in Bellevue, Washington. I literally flew there to see her in person, because I was living in Texas at the time. The office was perfectly decorated with art that can only be interesting to a psychologist, the light was dim, and I paused as I tried to decide whether to sit on the couch, the comfy chair, or lay in the floor in the fetal position. I went with the couch, because it offered me the opportunity to do all the above! I love my therapist, she isn’t one of those, “tell me how you feel” shrinks. She is a “Let me set your ass straight therapist,” but she is able to do it in a way that you thank her after shelling out $200 an hour.

In this session I realized that one of the mistakes I’ve made in dating for many years is that I want to be the hero! We went back to the first girl I fell for in 7th or 8th grade, and worked our way forward. Let me give you a rundown:

  • Her mother and father were separated, and honestly dad was not a great man!
  • Her mother (who was precious) died of cancer
  • My senior year of high school…she was absolutely hot and no issues. So I eventually moved on!
  • Her father cheated on her mother like it was his job! He didn’t even live in the house.
  • Fell for a lady who was the poster child for “daddy issues”
  • Fell for a lady who’s father had died when she was young.
  • Long relationship with a lady who’s father left the family when she was 13 years-old.
  • Last relationship was with a woman who’s husbands cheated several times.

In one of my last serious relationships I remember thinking, “I am going to show this lady what it means to be fully loved, and I will never hurt her.” And while I think that is admirable…it is not my job to save her, and to show her that all men don’t suck! It is my job to offer a wonderful, fulfilling, and loving relationship. Yes, I’m am to be committed, but I am not going to be her hero. In fact, she isn’t likely looking for a hero!

The same is true for you ladies! You meet men who are broke, busted, and disgusted. Some of them have also been cheated on and left with heartbreak and financial issues. There is nothing wrong with being loving and kind, but they don’t need you to bail them out or be there to meet their every need. We aren’t that different than you when it comes to one thing…we want you to need us, but not have to have us. When you and I are in the hero mode we think we need to be on 24-7 watch. Honestly, its as much about us is it is them, because we wan’t to save the day. We want to be admired and adored, which is simply called what? Insecurity. Side note ladies, if a man takes one step toward asking you to bail them out financially…run!

When you or I want to be the hero and show them what it means to be loved, nurtured, or adored then we often times come across as clingy. And when they push back we are amazed, because we know who they dated or married in the past! How can they not see our greatness? They see it, but it is just too much. Don’t be the hero…be the one who makes them laugh or smile. Yes, show them what it means to be loved and cherished, but don’t be dramatic as if you are riding in on a horse to save the day.

If you are a person who tends to want to rush in and be Mr or Ms Everything to someone then I suggest getting a hobby, and more than one! It is okay to fall for people who need a hero, but they don’t want to be your reason for living. Don’t be the Jason Bourne of dating…focused solely on saving them from another bad relationship. Every time they turn around there you are trying to save the day! Just be consistent, honest, and follow through on your promises. You don’t need to build a moat around them.

I want to end by saying to both the men and women reading this that be very careful when running from the hero. There is a very good chance they do adore you, and will give you what you’ve always desired. If they are “too much” then sit down with them and say, “I don’t need a hero!” Communicate that what you do need is a little space, but you appreciate the effort. Make it clear that you are looking for a partner who brings you laughter and love…not someone who is constantly looking for ways to earn your love through heroic gifts or acts of service.

In the next couple of days I want to look at “The healer.” Do you always find yourself in relationships with people who are depressed, lost, anxious, or insecure. Do you think you can fix them? Hmmmm

Love ya,



2 responses to “Dating Mistakes: Don’t Be The Hero”

  1. Yikes! This is exactly why I no longer trust myself to date – I always end up trying to be the hero, but as soon as they feel good, back on their feet….its over. And I do not need to be rescued either.


  2. Christine Bernsen

    Nicely written. I believe I used to be like this when I was younger, less experienced in relationships. Experiences and time mature us. Thank God!! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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