Rule # 4 Avoid the Knight in Shining Armor in the Dating Jungle

Today is Valentine’s Day. February 14th, 2023. It’s the day to celebrate the love your life. To honor your love for each other. However, for many people, it’s not all puppy dog tails and rainbows. Instead it’s full of broken hearts, empty promises and lonely nights. I know all this too well. After my divorce, I spent 10 years on dating sites searching for my perfect match and was instead met with fake profiles, wasted time on guys who never actually read my profile and only looked at my pics and just wanted to get laid. It was just one disaster after the other. The only thing it did do was give me tons of content to write my Dating Jungle Book Series. My very first book I published way back in 2012 and was the platform that helped me launch my publishing house years later.

Writing your pains is very therapeutic and how I help my authors in their journey. It assists you in the healing process, in order to move on and also help others on their journey. As I wrote about all of my bad dating experiences it helped me become a more emotional stable person to not bring those past wounds into the next relationship. So I could finally find my happy ever after. Which I did. I am now engaged to be married to the love of my life in just two short months, April 29th 2023.

We took a nice cruise just a few weeks ago to destress from the holidays because we are both business owners and the holidays are actually busier for us. What I did not expect to encounter on this cruise was Rule #4 from my first book I published. We were a few days into our cruise, sitting in the formal dinning room. I with my back to the wall and Pete looking at me. I got up to go to the bathroom, came back and I got the feeling a woman was starring at me from across the room. I looked in her direction and was like hmmm.. this stranger keeps starring at me. Why? I know my hair looks amazing… It took me awhile to notice the man sitting next to her. Because he isn’t very special. You know some people’s auras just don’t pop, they blend into space like they don’t exist. Or they shouldn’t exist, for humanity’s sake. Then it hit me like a ton of bricks. OMG it’s Rule #4 from my book. HOLY SHIT. I literally thought this man would have been in prison. Well, he had been in prison, before I met him.

My mouth probably hit the table. Pete, my current fiancé, had no idea what was going on. He kept asking me, “What happened? What is it?” Yet it felt distant, like a far away echo as my mind spun and memories from 20 years ago started to play like a movie in my head.

I finally found the muscles in my mouth to respond, “So you are not going to believe this story….” And I dove into my past that I had completely forgotten about so long ago.


I was 25 years old. After living in Florida for about a year, I was working at a dead-end job with a mean boss that I hated. It didn’t pay that well and I was stressed out, but didn’t know what to do. I had to continue going to the office and taking the torture because I had to pay my bills. I was stuck in one of those ruts that a lot people get trapped in. Sometimes reality isn’t fun, but you have to do what you have to do.

I was single at the time and didn’t have a whole lot of time for dating since I was working to death at my horrible job. I could barely drag myself out of bed in the mornings because I was dreading the day ahead of me. I somehow made it through the 8 hours of my boss yelling and screaming at me all day, to just sit in rush hour traffic at the end of the day, drag myself up 22 stairs, make a TV dinner, sip a couple glasses of wine, and fall asleep early. The next day, I got up and did it all over again.

I eventually starting dating again and met a man I really liked. We started spending every day together. I told him how much I hated my job and he said I should quit. That he would take care of me. He wanted to move into my condo within the first month so he could pay the bills and I wouldn’t have to work. He wanted to get married and have children. He wanted a wife he could take care of. He was a strong, sexy man in his paramedic uniform, going out and saving lives every day. I knew moving in with someone so soon wasn’t the best idea, though I thought maybe he could save me, too. It’s hard to resist a man in uniform. I really wanted out of my current situation and this seemed like the perfect solution.

After moving in together, his car needed a new stick shift. He said he didn’t have the money or a credit card to put it on because the limit wouldn’t allow it. If I put it on my card, he would pay the monthly bill. He was desperate because he depended on his car to get back and forth to work. Since we were already living together and there was talk of marriage, I figured it wasn’t a big deal. Plus, he was paying most of the bills since I wasn’t working any longer. He assured me he would pay it back. No problem.

I had never lived with anyone prior to this. I was excited to play house with a man. It all happened very quickly, but I was excited. I was the good little wifey, ironing and starching his shirts, packing his lunch while he would go out in the world and rescue the civilians. After his long days, he would tell me his heroic stories of what happened that day over a home-cooked meal. 

Pretty soon he proposed to me and we were going to be married. I was ecstatic! I started planning the wedding and figuring out the details. He was paying the bills and asked for all my pertinent bank account info. I gave it over easily, since we were engaged and going to get married. That’s what you do, combine bank account info, right?

Soon, he began working a lot, taking on extra shifts. He was working nights and weekends. Often, he wasn’t making it home for dinner anymore. Then he started not coming home at all and said he was working doubles because he needed to help pay for all of our bills since I wasn’t bringing in any income. Eventually I was spending every night alone, with a bottle of wine and movies on TBS, wondering where he was. 

One day he finally came home in a flight suit and said he got a promotion to be a flight paramedic. It was a big promotion for him and he would be making a lot of money now. However, it meant that he would have to be gone for weeks at a time. I figured it was good for his career. Now I was totally alone and unable to even reach him via cell phone. If I called him, he wouldn’t answer. His excuse would be that he was flying or in another country picking up patients and he didn’t have coverage. (This was way prior to smart phones.) The scenario went from my knight in shining armor saving me, to us being roommates who never saw each other. I became even more miserable and lonely than I was in my dead-end job. Now I was an at home wife-to-be with no one to take care of. I was totally isolated. 

I was checking the mail one day and I got a collection letter from my credit card company. I hadn’t been checking my accounts online because he was supposed to be paying the bills. I immediately went to the computer to check that account, and found he had only made one payment in the last six months. I started looking in other accounts and there were multiple withdrawals and unauthorized charges for stuff I didn’t know about. I started doing more research, and looking up our cell phone bill. When he said he was actually gone off flying, he had been making multiple calls to local phone numbers. When he came back from one of his so called “flights” I checked his phone while he was asleep. I matched the numbers on the bill with his contacts and they were all different women that he was calling daily. Then I rifled through his paramedic jacket and found condoms. We didn’t use condoms because he wanted to have a baby. 

I was furious! I couldn’t believe he was playing me for a fool. I kicked him out of my condo. He really had nothing to say for himself, since he had been caught red-handed. In the following months everything completely unraveled. The sheriff’s department came to my house looking to serve him with contempt of court. Apparently he had a teenage daughter he was paying child support for. That was news to me. I had no idea he had a daughter or was even married before. He had told me all his relatives were dead, and that he had no one. It wasn’t that he didn’t have any friends or family, it was that no one would talk to him because he was a con-artist. I eventually found out that he had been married 6 times before. He was in prison prior to meeting me for almost beating a man to death in a bar fight. The entire flight paramedic was a lie, apparently that didn’t even exist in our area. He made it all up just so he could leave the house for weeks at a time. I didn’t even know where he was or what he was doing. He got the flight suit on eBay.

My knight in shining armor wasn’t looking to save me, he was looking to drain my bank accounts and get whatever he could from me. Thank goodness this entire charade only lasted for about 9 months and I found out before I became his seventh wife. I got out pretty clean besides a few racked up credit cards and a bruised ego. The lesson I learned from this is that no one can just swoop in and save you. If you’re unhappy with things in your life, you need to save yourself. Don’t get caught up in the fantasy. Soon enough reality will come rushing back in and knock you on your butt. Keep yourself grounded. When someone comes into your life and says they can make everything better, watch out. Little red bells should go off in your head. Not just one person is going to wave a magic wand and make life better. Yes, falling in love is great, but when it’s with the right person. Just remember to keep your feet on the ground when your head starts going off into la la land. Make sure you are making the right conscious decisions even though you’re in love. 

Every now and then give yourself a reality check. Remove yourself emotionally from the situation and look at it from a third person perspective. Think, in this situation, what would your girlfriend think about this? Or what would someone else, even a stranger think, about this if you told them the story? It’s so easy to get caught up in the whirlwind of romance. Guys and girls will say anything to charm someone they like, especially the smooth talkers. I know, I’m a sucker to fall in love, too. I fall fast and I fall hard. Sometimes without really taking the time to see if this person is as wonderful as they tell me they are. Actions speak louder than words. Watch out for the little things they do, not the big stories they tell. That is what really sets people apart. Anyone can talk a good line of BS, but what do they actually do about it? 

Excerpt from 10 Rules to Survive the Dating Jungle. Find this and more great stories on Amazon!

So the funny thing is we kept seeing Rule #4 on the cruise after the fact. He kept sweating because he knew I knew the truth about him. He was probably with wife number 34 at this point and time. And I could have blown his cover at any point and time during the cruise. But I am in my happy place in my life now. And his karma will get him. But Pete and I did have fun messing with him. Every time we saw them on the boat we just yelled out really loud, “Where’s my flight suit? Have you seen it? I can’t find it?!” I just feel bad for the lady. But I can’t change their life path. I’m sure he already filled her head with lies. But we all know the truth.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

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