Zodiac Dating Compatibility: 8 Lessons We've Learned So You Don't Have To

Dating different people in your life so that you learn more about yourself, your preferences, and your relationship goals is pretty sage advice, but the layer to it that's often forgotten is astrology's role in personal growth. The more we date, the more we learn how we interact with folks who belong to other zodiac signs. Perhaps you like dating your own sign, or perhaps you've found a sign or two with whom you simply can't coexist. (We're looking at you, couples consisting of two fire signs.)

Whether Sagittarius is too outgoing, Cancer is too emotional, or Capricorn is too serious for you, not every zodiac sign is ultimately meant for you, leaving trial and error as the best means by which to find your forever partner. (Of course, taking into consideration one's entire birth chart is arguably more important than judging someone solely by their sun sign.) These relationships — these tests — leave you armed with more skills to maneuver dating and love, and to aid you in this quest, we're here to deliver some of our tips and testimonies so you can not only learn from our mistakes but also know you're not alone.

Lindsay Ray learned to bring BEWE (Big Elle Woods Energy)

Do you ever feel you don't identify with your zodiac sign traits? Same. Well, sometimes — and only as it relates to my romantic relationships. See, as a Gemini woman, I relate to most of the characteristics associated with my sign: I'm social, intellectually curious, chatty, indecisive, and a bit moody (don't catch me without my coffee in the a.m.). Geminis are also known to be flighty, easily bored, and one of the zodiac signs most likely to cheat. And, as a long-term relationship girlie, in my best Elle Woods voice, I say: I object.

I've had three long-term relationships in my adult years, two of which were with men I wasn't necessarily astrologically compatible with (Capricorn and Taurus). Guess who did the cheating — not me! Shocking, right? Collectively, I spent seven years with both, through many bumps but loyal as a Leo. Perhaps it makes sense, then, that my rising sign is Leo — a testament that you can feel more in tune with your rising sign, at least sometimes.

Needless to say, my current partner (the one who liked it so much he put a ring on it) is a Cancer, which isn't the most compatible with Gemini, either. However, if there's one thing I learned while dating, it's that people can surprise you, for better or for worse — regardless of their sign. Plus, the odds look a little better when examining Cancer and Leo compatibility, and if my rising sign rules my relationships as my past has proved, then I think we'll be okay.

Vanessa Elle finds the surprise(s) in people

The biggest lesson I've learned from dating different zodiac signs is that, despite everything we know about the signs and their signature personalities, people can still surprise you. One of the worst for me was a Cancer, the zodiac's resident caring, charismatic, and affectionate sign. That's not to say that Cancers can't be those things, or that all Aries are actually dishonest. Rather, it probably means that we shouldn't immediately write people off because the stars say they're not compatible with us — or entertain high hopes because they are.

The patterns that I seem to follow in relationships, however, are everything you'd expect of a Virgo. I can be critical, but this is actually a reflection of the way I am ultra-critical of myself. I am honest to a fault, which can be both a strength and a weakness (and an instigator to land me in some hot water). I am also definitely picky, but isn't that a good thing? I'm happier alone than in a relationship that just isn't right for me.

That said, I seem to be missing the classic Virgo practical mind. On one hand, I know I shouldn't put too much weight on a person's sign, and on the other, I am never dating a Gemini again.

Del Sandeen reflects on the person in addition to the sign

I probably embody some of Sagittarius' best and worst traits: curious, honest to a fault, independent, and occasionally short-tempered. And in typical Sag fashion, I'm optimistic no matter what's going on. While I never chose to date someone based on their zodiac sign, I did consider the astrology aspect, especially whenever something went wrong. I believe each person is an individual and not necessarily a reflection of their sun sign, but at the same time, I couldn't help but think about the negative traits commonly associated with a specific zodiac sign when this person annoyed me.

One thing I noticed is that, although I'm a fairly typical fire sign, I tend to attract water signs (Pisces, Scorpio, and Cancer have all entered the chat). Based on how all of these relationships turned out, I don't think they were the best pairing for me. However, being with someone who's my polar opposite in terms of emotionality has taught me some things, such as how to soften the blow when I'd much rather impatiently blurt out how I feel or how to be more patient, not only with others but also with myself. I believe that each person who comes into our lives, whether they stay for a short period of time or forever, can teach us something. And I've definitely learned some lessons from water signs, as well as that one air sign who was even flakier than I was.

Erica Brooke Gordon finds peace in her partner

When it comes to dating and the zodiac, we tend to connect more with some signs than others. The only sign I can speak of personally is Pisces because the two longest and most serious relationships I've had were both with a Pisces: My husband and my first (and ex) boyfriend are both Pisces, with birthdays a day apart. Weird, right?

From my knowledge of relationship compatibility and the zodiac signs, Aries-Pisces isn't a common match, but they can provide a perfect balance for each other. I've learned from experience that the secret to this connection is that opposites attract. Aries is the first sign of the zodiac, while Pisces is the last. The intuitive Pisces is protective of Aries and provides the balance I need for a healthy relationship. He's the peaceful calm to my more anxious, neurotic self, and our strengths are totally opposite, making for an excellent balance.

The reason two people are compatible is not always obvious on the surface, so keep an open mind, thinking beyond surface-level personality traits and interests, when it comes to dating and the zodiac.

Krystle Vermes never stops learning

All of my relationships with other zodiac signs have ended up helping me gain more insight into my own. As a Taurus sun, I've always known that I function best when I'm in a predictable state of comfort, and that's definitely true in relationships — I crave stability and thrive when I can find it in a partner. I also tend to lean toward others who share a similar appreciation for all things sentimental, as well as old-school romance. 

On the flip side, I've noticed that I often don't do well when paired with another Taurus. I chalk that up to the old trope of being too similar and butting heads. It also doesn't help that Tauruses are adamant about holding their ground — this can sometimes manifest as an unwillingness to compromise and can quickly sink any relationship. I try to remind myself that these aren't necessarily character flaws, but rather things I can be more mindful of for the sake of my own personal growth.

Jackie McGoey trusts in the process more

I am indecisive, conflict-avoidant, and need harmony and order to feel at ease — in other words, a Libra through and through. Almost 15 years ago, I met a cute Aquarius. We had similar upbringings, shared the same values, and could laugh together for hours. But we were also ... very different. He was comfortable in social settings; I was a homebody. He was impulsive — a doer — while I was a planner. He didn't take three hours to decide what to eat for dinner. And while I tended to worry about making everything in my life look, feel, and be "perfect," he, refreshingly, never strived for this.

I married that Aquarian, and what his free-thinking, take-the-world-as-it-comes way of doing life has taught me over the past 12 years is this: You can't pause your life until it's just right. Perfection, flawlessness, idealism — the pursuit of them takes too much time away from what's really important: just living.

Today, I try to live more fully. I take more (calculated) risks, I overthink less, and I trust that whatever is meant to be, will be. Of course, I still have those moments when my thoughts are all over the place worrying about things like if the presentation I gave was well-received or whether or not the housewarming gift I chose was the best choice. But during those times when I am feeling off-kilter, I turn to my Aquarian to ground me and help me find my balance again.

Chandra Price on continuing to work on yourself while dating

Growing up, I was glued to my horoscope in my favorite magazine each month, but I was always hyper-focused on my own zodiac sign: Scorpio. I've never paid too much attention to the signs of a potential love match, but maybe my love matches would align more if the stars were aligned for us.

True to Scorpio, I can be too harsh on myself and think I need to have it all together in order to be with someone else. But, in truth, we are all a work in progress and deserve a companion; we can work on ourselves while in a relationship. Perhaps that's why I need some extra help when it comes to finding a lasting love match. A positive I've learned about myself when dating is how loyal I am in love — and that passion is key for me — although, as I grow older, I realize compromise is also important. And sometimes passion isn't as important as finding a loyal companion.

Preston Smith needed a breath of fresh air

Of the zodiac signs with which I've been romantically tangled, two stand out the most: Cancer and Aquarius. Now, listen, I'm a Capricorn with a Gemini moon sign, so I'm not the easiest person to handle. The seriousness and business-oriented nature of my sun sign contrast with the complicated moodiness of my moon sign in ways that are honestly hard to manage at times, so I'm not innocent in any relationship troubles I've encountered. But the Cancer situation sucked — like, big time.

I shouldn't hold it against all folks who fall under this sign, but being manipulated for half a year made this sign leave a sour taste in my mouth — and I've always preferred sweet. This relationship, which ultimately turned out to be nothing more than a situationship for the other person, helped me learn to put myself first, as I bent over backward for them in ways that are truly unhealthy. I was left in shambles, to be quite honest, but the rebuilding process made me a more resilient and stable person than I ever thought I could be, especially as I'd focused too much on my schooling and career before that relationship/situationship to ever let myself date much.

Cut to today, and I'm nearly three-and-a-half-years into a nourishing relationship with an Aquarius — an eternal breath of fresh air who has helped me be more spontaneous, grounded, and delightfully carefree than ever.