Dysfunctional Dating Pattern #4: The Fairytale Myth

Posted on June 15, 2010

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You just can’t keep your eyes off this guy.

He walks into the room, full of charisma and charm. He is captivating, intense, passionate and gorgeous. He is looking for his one true love and he proclaims to everyone that nothing will stop him from finding her.

He is willing to ride wild horses across deserts to claim her, to run through crowded airports and wrestle with security to catch the plane she is on that is about to take off ; he is willing to completely forget about his career and personal responsibilities so that he can chase her through almost impossible obstacles in order to proclaim his love!

OF COURSE you can’t keep your eyes off this guy. He’s bigger than life up there on that movie screen.


You’ve gotta hand it to the director, the screen writer and the actors. They’ve kept you captivated for 90 minutes. They’ve taken you through the whole gamut of human emotions in less than two hours. They’ve created an incredible story.

But when the movie’s over, reality awaits. If you stay in the fantasy romance world after the credits are done rolling, you’re going to have some serious problems in the real one.

Now before you go and get all defensive (as so many women do when I talk about this dysfunctional dating pattern), hear me out. I am NOT saying that you should settle. I am not saying that it’s wrong to daydream about the man you’d like to end up with or that you shouldn’t envision your ideal partner.

I AM saying, however, that you need to leave Jerry Maguire at the movies, where he belongs. The fairytale man is a myth. The longer you mistake a man who sweeps you off your feet as your own personal Prince Charming, the longer you are going to participate in this dysfunctional dating pattern.

Quite frankly, if you confuse the relationship drama you see on television with how real relationships work, if you think your dating world should resemble an episode of Sex and the City, you are cooking up a recipe for heartbreak.

Television shows and movies make a profit when they reel us in emotionally. They way they pull us in so effectively is because they create intense emotion and drama.

But in real life, in real relationships, people who are into intense emotion and drama do NOT make good partners. They may be passionate and charismatic, they may be huge thrill-seekers, they may create a show wherever they go, but they are also really unstable.

And unstable men cannot be trusted with your heart. They can’t be trusted to show up at the altar, to help you make the mortgage payments or to pick up the kids from the sitter’s on time.

Romance is fantastic. Passion is great. I’m not saying you should compromise these important parts of a relationship. I’m just saying that it’s time to get leave the unrealistic myth of the fantasy man behind, before you get your heart broken.

If a guy comes into your life who really seems to be too good to be true, if he seems like a man from a fairytale, then there probably is some fiction going on. The kind of fiction that’s going to crush you when the reality of who he really is hits you.

Don’t get me wrong. There are a lot of incredible guys out there. I’m sure the man of your dreams does exist-he may just not come in the package you have envisioned.

That’s why putting the Prince Charming myth behind you is a step in the right direction. You never know who is waiting for you. If you continue to cling to your fairytale fantasies, you may miss him altogether.

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