Get Ready for a Wild Ride: 4 Things to Know Before Dating an Entrepreneur

Business.com / Strategy / Last Modified: February 22, 2017

The world of an entrepreneur can seem exciting, unstable, insanely intimidating or all of the above depending on what you’ve heard.

There are a lot of blogs and articles out there about being an entrepreneur, but what if you’re just thinking about dating an entrepreneur?

If you’re like most people, you probably have a “normal” job with set hours, a boss, colleagues, and relatively speaking you can leave your work at the office (or wherever you do business.)

Before marrying me, my wife Kristy had some hard decisions to make. 

The world of an entrepreneur can seem exciting, unstable, insanely intimidating or all of the above depending on what you’ve heard or what your potential paramour has told you.

However, there are a few very serious decisions to make before getting serious with an entrepreneur. 

Related Article: The Top 10 Qualities That Define An Entrepreneur

Remember that most startups fail, and since only 13 percent of Americans even consider themselves entrepreneurs, the likelihood of your date getting rich is slim to none.

A more viable goal is to be able to earn a living with their ventures.

Not scared off yet? Here’s what’s in store for you:

You’ll Rarely Come First

Expecting an entrepreneur to regularly put you before their ventures is like asking a parent to put you before their baby.

It’s just not going to happen. A lot of entrepreneurs are serious Type-As and will happily spend 24/7 working on their project.

You may need to remind them about work-life balance, but remember that they’ll never really change. This drive is what may make them successful.

There’s No Such Thing as Vacations

There’s also no such thing as leaving your work at the office, mental health days, bankers hours, or anything else you’re used to.

You may wake up to find your entrepreneur working, come home to them working, and go to sleep before them (because they're still...working.)

To be successful, ungodly hours are required and patience is a must. They’ll (hopefully) carve out time for you, but kiss your weekends or long vacations goodbye.

Even if you do actually convince your entrepreneur partner to go out or take a trip, be prepared for them to pack up their work and office to take along.

It’s kind of like dating a CEO and a bartender all rolled into one in terms of hours at work.

Related Article: There's a Type: Traits of Successful Entrepreneurs That You Can Develop

They Think They Have to Do It All

There’s a dark side to entrepreneurship people don’t talk about. Entrepreneurs think they’re expected to not need sleep, have confidence, be a leader and never show weakness.

This is partly because some people really do “demand” this of them and partly due to the fact that the entrepreneur demands it of him or herself.

You’ll need to support them and listen intently as well as learn to read between the lines. 

However, with entrepreneurs they’re exceptionally good at making everything look “fine.”

Even with this assistance, you will still need to realize that they will continue to think they have to do it all.

This is part of that drive and fire within an entrepreneur. There is also a true difference between going for it and being a "fakepreneur" so be aware of the signs and keep these in mind if you plan on continuing to date them. 

You’ll Be on This Roller Coaster Ride With Them

Ups, downs, twists, turns, surprise endings and some really dismal days are ahead.

It’s never smooth sailing, and, as their partner, you are committed to joining them on this ride. 

This can be exciting, but it tends to be nerve racking for people who crave stability.

It might seem okay when you’re just dating, but what if you want a life partner or plan on starting a family?

Consider what their lifestyle may be down the road and deternine if you will be comfortable with a long-term roller coaster experience.  

Then think about what you want out of life. There may be less emotional and physical support in an entrepreneur partner than you would find with someone else, but it doesn't mean they will love you any less. 

Matching Perspectives and Life Goals

Dating isn’t easy, and dating an entrepreneur makes it even more challenging. Just like it takes a certain type of person to date a doctor, pro-athlete, or writer, it also takes a certain type of person to find happiness with an entrepreneur.

Related Article: Only the Strong Survive: The 3 Signs of a Powerful Entrepreneur

When it does happen, it can be a magical and special experience to love an entrepreneur and share their excitement as you build a business and life together. 

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