There you are. In a coffee shop with a person you’ve met on Tinder . She is attractive and intellectual, but also self-centered, like all the ones you notice.
He talks about the books he has read in the last month when, suddenly, a feeling of familiarity comes over you. You have lived this scene before.
This story hasn’t even started and you know how it’s going to end: like the rosary at dawn. But instead of cutting your losses, there will be a second date. You may even be the one to suggest it.
This is not an isolated case: many people date (and even marry) with totally incompatible profiles. But why does this happen if a priori it doesn’t make sense?
“Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again hoping to get different results,” said the German physicist Albert Einstein. Human beings are attracted to what they already know, even though they know that it is not the best option.
And this phenomenon has a name: dating deja vu , a play on words that refers to the famous French term déjà vu (already seen).
A research at the University of Toronto says that we tend to fall in love with the same type of person over and over again.
The authors of this study carried out with more than 300 people in Germany conclude that, if we have the same problems in one relationship after another, whether stable or temporary, perhaps it is because we choose the same personality traits in our partners and do it in a unconscious, all the time.
On the other hand, we also tend to look for personality traits that we think we are missing, using them to fill emotional gaps. Or toxic personality traits that we grew up with in the early years of our life. Escaping the loop is not easy.
Cristina, a 32-year-old from Madrid, says that she dated the same type of people for a long time. “I was that typical friend who always suffered for the same reasons.
I got to go out with people who had the same hobbies, the same customs, and even the same name, ”says Cristina, now married to the boy she never dreamed of.
“After so many disappointments I decided not to date anyone else for a while. I ended up engaged to a friend, a guy who was totally incompatible with the model of man I always resorted to. He was always there but I never knew how to see him, he was very busy wasting time, “recalls Cristina.
For his part, Raúl, a 29-year-old teacher, remembers how his dates with the girls he met online were like . “I only matched girls who were slimmer and shorter than me.
When I made a match by mistake with a girl that I did not like physically, I would undo it when I realized it. I went out with some of them, but I never got past that first date, we didn’t talk to each other afterwards ”.
Although dating applications such as Tinder, Bumble, OKCupid, Badoo or Facebook Dating allow you to socialize with different types of people, they also require defining certain parameters to find your ideal partner : height, political ideology, hobbies or age.
There’s even a dating app called Hater that lets you connect with people who hate the same things as you.
“In general, people have certain preferences and tastes and we always look for that in the other. Many times we feel insecure in the face of the unknown and we are afraid to break the pattern to meet people with other characteristics, other nationalities, other customs …
We resist leaving our comfort zone and we lose ourselves to know someone different, “he explains Gabriela Paoli, psychologist and author of the book Salud digital.
“Dating apps, for their part, are designed to show you a prototype of the person, the one you are looking for. But this, which is not a bad thing, could nevertheless lead you to make mistakes, ”explains Paoli. “Now imagine, for example, meeting someone who is an athlete.
If you have never practiced any sport, perhaps this meeting would help you to consider a change in habits and do something different. This can happen in many areas.
That is why it is very important to develop that capacity for flexibility and adaptation with others, taking into account that different people can contribute positive things to us. Leaving that comfort zone means taking risks and having self-confidence ”.
What we should not change, according to Paoli, are the values we look for in other people. “There are certain principles that are fundamental and if they are not in the base it is very unlikely that the relationship will advance and consolidate.
We shouldn’t change those ”. To break this pattern of relationships and dating, you have to be honest with yourself, even if it means admitting things you don’t like.
The key to breaking up with déjà vu dating is not clinging to the same types of people, as difficult as it may seem. How many times have we missed a good opportunity by paying attention to something that we knew would not work?
“We have to feel that we are deserving of a good love relationship and that love can come into our lives regardless of whether we leave behind what we want so much but that will inevitably hurt us,” concludes Paoli.