Short summary: Married at 37 with two kids, “The View” cohost Sara Haines is an amazing case study in crushing your marriage vision board, a.k.a. “intentional dating”. Here’s what she did.
“The View” cohost Sara Haines recently spoke to Glamour about her journey to wifedom and motherhood, and how it all took longer than she had envisioned. She got married at 37 and just had her second baby at 40. I found her story to be an amazing case study in crushing your marriage vision board, a.k.a. “intentional dating”.
Sara knew she was getting older, but she wanted marriage and kids in that order, as lots of women do. Since our lives and relationships don’t always turn out the way we want, it makes sense to try and influence the areas we can!
Here are six of the lessons that jumped out:
1- Hone your “long term partner radar”
Sara admits she wasn’t the “healthiest shopper at the time”. She spent big chunks of her 20’s and 30’s with two boyfriends that she really didn’t have a long-term future with. One was adamant about not wanting kids, something she desired. The other wasn’t interested in taking their relationship to the next level. Boo.
The takeaway: You don’t know the future, but your likeliest life partners will want the same general things in life that you do, and want them with you.
2- Put a time limit in cases where you don’t agree on your joint future
This means you’ve got to decide how much time you’re willing to spend in a relationship where you’re not on the same general wavelength about the future. As a woman, I can tell you we’re slow to walk away from anyone once we’re in love. We tend to be overly optimistic about the Power of our Love to make things right. After a while, we can end up trying to justify the time already sunk into him by giving him more and more. Because hope.
Sara doesn’t say at what point she realized these guys didn’t see the future the way she did, but she does say she held on “10 times too many”. Hopeless romantics, listen up: I’ve found that you’ve spoken your truth and given him some time, it’s ok to pull the plug. Sometimes it takes your absence to help clarify what’s important to him too.
The takeaway: Sometimes you need to be the one to cut things off instead of lingering longer, trying to change his mind.
3- Don’t expect to “just know” when you meet him
I think love-at-first-sight stories are heart-warming, but not the norm, and more important, not a guarantee he’s husband material for you. Sara said her friends would ask her after one good date whether she thought he was ‘The One’, but she resisted the expectation she should have an instant verification moment. As your relationship grows, you get more information to help you decide if this is someone you can build a future with-and if that’s even where his mind is at.
The takeaway: Have the patience to let people reveal themselves with time.
4- There is more than one “The One”
Part of why she wasn’t in a rush to ‘call it’ was her belief that there are many people one can choose as a life partners- the operative word being ‘choose’. She and her husband agree that “there’s no one person” for any of us. A great perspective to counter the urge to gloss over serious incompatibilities.
The takeaway: There are thousands of “The Ones”. It’s the One you decide to commit to. – Sara Haines
5- Stay positive, come prepared to do the work-and yeah, some discomfort
Sara accepted she would have to put herself out there time after time in order to find a good fit. Meet some creeps? Yes. Intentionally carve out time for dating whether she wanted to or not? Yes. She knew there was no shortcut around this. Her vision for her future fueled her determination.
It’s the people that scare easily that don’t end up meeting people. -Sara Haines
The takeaway: Dating really is like playing the lottery. No, most of the tickets won’t be winners, but you must participate to win.
6 – Be realistic about human nature
Sara also mentioned something that makes relationships smoother-giving people the space to be human. She said she and her husband still notice attractive people and don’t feel threatened. (They’re respectful about their observations). This is a sign of security in herself and her relationship…as it should be. Some women cut off an interested guy if they discover he’s also talking to someone else. Isn’t the very definition of dating exploring one’s options-until you agree to be a monogamous couple?
The takeaway: Stay off his pages. Secure yourself so you don’t get spooked by people being…people.
Sara’s story is an amazing lesson in going after your heart’s desire-and getting it. Try her intentional dating techniques this year and go for yours!
Tia Truthteller is a wife of 22 years and author of “Dating on Purpose: An Illustrated Guide to Intentional Dating for Commitment-Conscious Millennials“, available in paperback, eBook & audiobook.