I was in the single Catholic community in DC for a few years and during that time, I collected dating tips that I am passing on to you!
I helped coordinate a discussion group about Pope John Paul II's Love and Responsibility for a while at the Catholic Information Center, and through that experience, I was exposed to every Catholic dating book under the sun. Frankly, most of them were for beginners, idealistic, and written by people who had never closed the deal on a real life marriage. While they had some good insights, they sometimes lacked information that was applicable for women who were already established, educated, and maybe even been through a few relationships that did not lead to marriage.
I'll be adding to this quick tips list...so check back soon...
Amy's Quick Tips:
Discern!: Make sure that you make a definitive decision on whether you are called to religious life or married life. Put a reasonable time limit on this process and give yourself parameters if you have been at this for a long time. This process should not take years! I repeat...do not let this process take forever. God only lets us live this life for a limited amount of time, which means that we need to carefully manage our talents, gifts, dreams, and the vocation/life mission He has given each of us.
Take the Initiative: If you want to explore religious life, make an appointment for a retreat with a convent. If you are called to marriage, go to events and consider online dating sites. The point is: don’t just sit around watch TV.
Don’t Be a Perfectionist: If you are called to marriage, that does not mean waiting to find someone who is literally perfect. By being a perfectionist, you waste time, overlook nice guys, and risk missing the point of marriage altogether, which is patience, generosity, and compromise.
Think Outside the Box: If years are going by and you are not finding someone, take out your list of “must haves” and start editing. It doesn’t take that much to form a valid Catholic marriage and have children.