For your consideration:
- Meeting people.
- Pre-date communication.
- The “Wait 3 Days Rule.”
- The first date — the beginning.
- The first date — the end.
- Early relationship.
- Meeting friends/family.
- Meeting people. I’ve been hearing both of these since I broke up with my boyfriend of 6.5 years over 2 years ago: “It’s going to happen when you least expect it.” “You need to try harder.” Both are frustrating to hear as someone who does not prioritize getting married and having children, and from people who think I’m just lying about that and am secretly bitter and envious of their lives. Then, since I started dating Johnny Army again, these have been added to my friends’ repertoires: “There are so many great guys out there.” “You can do better.” “You’re not looking hard enough.” “Are you really putting yourself out there?” Again, as someone who has never had marriage and children as goals, I am honestly putting in as little effort as possible. I know there are great guys out there — I’m friends with several of them but that doesn’t mean that we’d work in a relationship. And Johnny Army may not be perfect but neither am I, and whatever it is that we’re doing right now works for me right now. Also, while my time and energy seemed boundless in my 20s, I value it much more now and am generally been a proponent of “if it happens, that’s great, but it’s OK if it doesn’t.”
- Pre-date communication. Aren’t all of us already in constant communication? I vote just enough to decide on a time and place to meet, and a confirmation text/e-mail/phone call the day before.
- The “Wait 3 Days Rule.” Much like the “1/2 your age + 7 years Rule” is arbitrary so is waiting 3 days. At least unlike the “1/2 your age + 7 years Rule,” it’s not still potentially creepy as well. Anecdotally, when Johnny Army said he would call the next day and then actually did, I was pleasantly surprised, especially as I figured he would text if anything at all. Meanwhile, here’s what games were like in the ’90s:
- The first date — the beginning. A set time and place for drinks in the early evening seems to be ideal for many people I know. This way, neither party is committed to a whole meal in case the date is not going well. I suggested this to a male friend of mine who has found himself in the position of picking up the dinner checks on several first dates when he already knows half-way through that there will be no second date. He said he tried asking girls out for just drinks but they then ask him if they should eat first. I asked him who these entitled girls are he is asking out who are clearly angling for a free meal. Apparently, these are “normal” girls?
- Paying. I have written about this previously, but in sum, I am an adult who has been buying herself drinks and food for years. I am not a feminazi and you are not a cheapskate. Let’s just agree to split the check and not judge each other for it, OK?
- The first date — the end. How far to go on the first date is only an issue for women, as far as I can tell. Are there even revenge porn sites for men? Slutshaming exists because women still feel ashamed about sex instead of just owning it as an individual choice the same men can and do. So, make the first move if you want. Handshake? Chaste peck? Making out? Wildest night of your life? Go as far as you want and don’t feel pressured to do anything you don’t want to [this extends into the relationship].
- Early relationship. If you like each other, go nuts! See each other as much as you can! If you burn out fast, so be it, but at least it was fun while it lasted.
- Meeting friends/family. I have somehow always been wrong about this one. Maybe it’s always and never a good time.
Basically, why are there still “rules” beyond common courtesy and consideration?