Donna’s Diary: Dating – a new chapter

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Donna Air is a 31 year old actress and TV presenter. Donna started out as a child actor in Byker Grove and later presented iconic show The Big Breakfast, as well as acting in various TV shows and films. This is her first foray into writing. Donna lives in London and is currently single and dating.

Dating has been very much on my mind these past few years so needless to say I jumped at the chance when eHarmony asked me to share with you some of my experiences (yes, often comical) in a series of blogs to coincide with their new book “Dating the second time round”.

I’ve done a lot of dating since the breakdown of my long term relationship four and half years ago. Like millions of other women I found myself single having to start the whole thing all over again. After almost a decade out of the dating world, had it changed?

Oh yes, it would be fair to say an awful lot had changed. For a start, I was no longer the party-loving teenager who could happily stay out all night. I was a grown woman with a totally different awareness of life, responsibilities, and a career I was working hard on.

I had a new home to build, an ex to deal with, and guess what, this time around, shock horror, I’m a mother! Yes, more importantly than anything, I had wanted to be there for our little girl. How the hell was I going to find the time, let alone the energy to start a new relationship? Did I even want one? I was terrified.

So much had changed my side of the things, but what had changed out there in this dating jungle? It certainly feels like one, with all this access to social media and the internet. It was faster, more instant (yup, really handy when a girl wants to “take things slowly”), and everyone seemed so impatient! I’m the official queen of impatience and so for me to say that things must have really sped up.

I remember one of my first nights out as a ‘single lass’. You know, we all do it – get dragged along to a night club once we’re officially single for a night with the girls. I was approached by a rather good looking guy (my friends later tell me he was an Argentinean polo player). I thought he was going to ask if I’d like a drink, or maybe if I liked the music, but instead he said “Hey – would you like to have sex?”

Oh my god! What do you say to that? I just meekly replied… “I need to find my friends”.

“And what is the problem exactly?” some of my friends joked, but it really was not the best chat up line for a woman who was still basically in post break-up trauma. Offering me a cup of tea and a biscuit may have been more appropriate. Yes, anyone who’s been through a divorce of sorts will tell you that for the first year at least you walk around like a car crash victim in shock, going through the motions of what you should be doing but without being truly connected in any way.

Of course I see the humour in such occasions now, now that I feel happy and confident (most of the time). I am truly enjoying dating and all it brings. Over the next eight weeks I will be sharing my experiences because, as we all know, dating, at whatever age or stage we are in life is one of those things that threads us all. We are all united in the search for the right mate. Right?


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