I Need a Hero(ine)

So I'm bad at casual dating. And it's because there aren't boundaries or checkpoints in casual dating.

That space of time between dates with the same man- how big does that have to get before it goes from 'that space of time between dates' to 'passive-aggressive way of saying I'm not interested in seeing you again'?

And if I, say, want to go on many dates with one of the men I'm seeing, does that mean I'm secretly wanting to date him exclusively? Or just that I enjoy having fun?

Is it in fact a means to an end, namely finding The One, or just a means in itself? And if it's NOT about finding The One, how do you know if you're doing it correctly, or justing wasting your and their time?

These are the things, I kid you not, that keep me up at night. Not all night, because I adore sleep, but late enough that I do start to wonder just how crazy I am in thinking this stuff.

Statistically, I cannot be the only person to contemplate this. And yet, there's no rule book for this stuff. None.

Monogamous, exclusive, one-at-a-time dating? Pop culture is FILLED with society's rules for that. Whatever we didn't learn from parents and siblings and friends, we learned from books, TV, and movies. Even songs! Some of it is pretty common sensical (don't hitch your wagon to someone you dislike), and some of it seems fairly random (play hard to get- but just the right amount). I've never been a master at the dating thing, even though I am an awesome girlfriend, but at least I understand the rules and have a common reference for them.

But show me the movie where a female is casually dating several men for the sake of just having a good time (without, of course, her being the antagonist). Point me to the book that sets up those social rules of do and don't for these sorts of scenarios. Give me some sort of measuring stick against which I can judge whether I am doing this thing right.

Am I having a good time? On the dates, yes.
In the time between the dates, where long silences or seeming lack of interest in future dates makes me twitchy (but I don't want to come across as needy or neurotic), no. And I find myself trying to put my eggs in one basket. A really really great basket who is probably way too classy for me, but still one basket. And if he's doing the casual dating thing, doesn't that mean he doesn't want to be one woman's entire basket? Ok, I've lost the metaphor, but you get my point.

Forget Disney princesses of different ethnicities- I need one that has her life together but is afraid of making the same mistake(s) in romance yet again, and killing her dwindling chances at true love.
(Not one of these chicks can help me out)

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