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Even if you’ve been burned repeatedly or have a poor track record when it comes to dating, these tips can help you to keep things in perspective and put you on the path to finding a loving relationship that lasts.

When you’re having trouble finding a love connection, it’s all too easy to become discouraged or buy into the destructive myths out there about dating and relationships.

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Or maybe your dating history consists only of brief flings and you don't know how to make a relationship last.

You could be attracted to the wrong type of person or keep making the same bad choices over and over, due to an unresolved issue from your past.

But both men and women experience the same core emotions such as sadness, anger, fear, and joy. Fact: Love is rarely static, but that doesn’t mean love or physical attraction is doomed to fade over time.

As we age, both men and women have fewer sexual hormones, but emotion often influences passion more than hormones, and sexual passion can become stronger over time.

Myth: I didn’t feel close to my parents, so intimacy is always going to be uncomfortable for me.

Fact: It’s never too late to change any pattern of behavior.

By shedding all pretense, you’ll encourage the other person to do the same, which can lead to an honest, more fulfilling relationship. It’s only natural to worry about how you’ll come across and whether or not your date will like you.

But no matter how shy or socially awkward you feel, you can overcome your nerves and self-consciousness and forge a great connection. To combat first-date nerves, focus your attention on what your date is saying and doing and what’s going on around you, rather than on your internal thoughts.

When we start looking for a long-term partner or enter into a romantic relationship, many of us do so with a predetermined set of (often unrealistic) expectations—such as how the person should look and behave, how the relationship should progress, and the roles each partner should fulfill.

These expectations may be based on your family history, influence of your peer group, your past experiences, or even ideals portrayed in movies and TV shows. Wants include things like occupation, intellect, and physical attributes such as height, weight, and hair color.

These are probably not the things you can find out about a person by eyeing them on the street, reading their profile on a dating site, or sharing a quick cocktail at a bar before last call.