Newly single, seeking life partner

Start the new year by asking your own relationship/dating/love-in-2021 question. Where do you hope to be in a post-vaccine world? What do you hope will change?

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See you on Tuesday. I hope many of you have a real three-day weekend.

I feel similar to writers who've said it's hard to find love and a committed relationship after a certain age.

I am mature women myself. I am newly single. I was married and recently divorced. I am ready for a relationship again – would even love to be married again. However, that doesn't seem to be what anyone is looking for these days. I've been on several different dating apps and dates. They end up the same – with me still being single. I tried to enjoy it for what it was, but I always wanted more than just a casual relationship.

I want love, romance, and commitment. Someone who wants to be with me for the long haul, even if it's not marriage. How do I find that in today's society, post COVID-19? Guys just aren’t interested in commitment. It's a sad world for people like me. Because I want that partner who will be around until my dying day. Happy, smiling, laughing, and sharing life with me.

– Newly single

First, let's not make sweeping generalizations. When you say "guys just aren't interested in commitment," you mean the men you've met so far ... on a few apps. You can't speak for everyone. Try not to do all-or-nothing thinking.

Second, it's a lot of pressure to go on a date with someone who's looking for a partner for life and death. Yes, you want a companion for all of the big things, but can you let these early dates feel fun and light? You can't replace a long-term spouse with someone who's instantly as serious. A good relationship might feel very casual in the beginning, and if it's working on both sides, you can watch it grow. A better philosophy might be, "I'm open to seeing where this could go."

If you read the column, you know we get many letters from 30-year-olds about dating fatigue – about how difficult it can be to find the right match. It's complicated at any age, and can feel very needle-in-haystack, especially with apps. Please have some patience. Try not to rush the process. People can sense "I'm want this now!' vibes, even through a phone. If you accept that you might be single for a while and find some ways to enjoy that time, dating will feel less stressful, and you might have more success with it.

– Meredith

Readers? How do you find patience with this? Advice for dating when you know you want a serious partner?