Dear Dr. Norquist:
I have recently started seeing this man who I think is adorable and things are going really well. My last relationship was a 3-year nightmare that ended a long time before I finally broke it off in July. Everyone keeps saying to follow the rules and take it slow and to be careful because I am on the rebound and it is too soon to get involved. How can I know if what I am feeling is right and if I should just go with the flow? I am still feeling so new at all this stuff and I am often very scared to get hurt again. Please give me some of your advice!
Dr. Norquist responds:
Sometimes it just takes time to know the answer to this question. If you stay centered within yourself, it will be easier to trust your own judgement. You must use your head and your heart to answer this question. Loving someone doesn’t necessarily mean we should be in a committed relationship with that person. Many other factors need to be considered, such as commonality of values, beliefs and goals, each partners ability to sustain intimacy, emotional health, current life situation, etc.
Decide what you want in a relationship, and what is most important to you. Take it slowly. Try not to use this new infatuation as something to “fill-up” on, to make you feel more whole. Remember to listen to everything you are feeling and discovering about this man, not just the part that feels good. Check to make sure you are not making decisions out of fear or insecurities. Move forward with your eyes open, and your heart available, and time will answer your questions for you.
Check out Dr. Norquist’s new blog GrowingThroughParenting.com
(Dr. Sallie Norquist is a licensed psychologist (NJ #2371) in private practice and is director of Chaitanya Counseling Services, a center for upliftment and enlivenment, in Hoboken.) Dr. Norquist and the staff of Chaitanya invite you to write them at Chaitanya Counseling Services, 51 Newark St., Suite 202, Hoboken, NJ 07030 or www.chaitanyacounseling.com or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. Questions can address various topics, including relationships, life’s stresses, difficulties, mysteries and dilemmas, as well as questions related to managing stress or alternative ways of understanding health-related concerns. Ó 2020 Chaitanya Counseling Services