Revamping My Dating Habits

Man and Woman Drinking at Bar

I have a friend, we’ll call her Michelle, who loves getting to know new people. When you talk to her, she’s so engaging that she makes you feel as if everything you said is the most interesting thing she’s ever heard. She’s confident, not cocky, and has the ridiculous ability to connect with people she just met. Not surprisingly, this girl has no problem in situations where she doesn’t know anyone. Her congeniality and charisma has gained her a great group of friends and helped her receive an offer for every job she’s ever interviewed for. But arguably more impressive, this girl has never had a bad first date.

I know.

Granted, it’s not like Michelle has a revolving door of men in and out of her life, but I would think even hitting 5-6 first dates and they’ve all been good is pretty damn impressive.

I have to admit, I held onto a little contempt for her since I’ve had my fair share of bad dates. But then I started thinking about some of the reasons she gave for why she thinks that they usually go so well, and admittedly, I realized there are a few things that I could be doing to make my dates better too.

One thing I learned I need to work on is giving people the benefit of the doubt. Everyone wants to put on their best impression during a first date. But there are plenty of things that could cause people to be off their game on a first date. Of course there are nerves, but sometimes, there are other things that might be making them uneasy. For example, my co-worker once told me that he had to leave a date early because he had horrible gas after eating a Fiber One bar. Apparently these things are no joke. There’s even a message board dedicated to the topic on My Fitness Pal, and the comments span over three years. The poor guy had no idea the bars caused such “unpleasant” side effects. He simply couldn’t stand it any longer, and had to cut the date short. His date left thinking he was a squirming weirdo and declined his invitation for a rain check.

When your date seems to be a little on edge (hopefully from nerves, not gas), Michelle says she’s tries to reassure them by saying something along the lines of “I was a little nervous but I’m having a great time!” or she compliments them on their restaurant choice or wardrobe.

And it’s not just Michelle that thinks it’s a smart idea.  A blogger over at “Adam and Eve” said that, “Most ladies will try and make an anxious date feel more comfortable,” in a recently shared dating guide for guys blog post. I tend to be more passive and I suppose I usually just absent-mindedly hope that the guy will make me feel more comfortable. I guess I figured that because he asked me out, he was confident and didn’t need reassurance. Now I’ll be more conscious about being just as complimentary to the guy as he is to me.

She also said that if her date’s nerves seem to be getting the best of them, she tries to take the reigns a little throughout the night. To engage her date, she asks them questions about things that they’re passionate about. She’ll also suggest something fun to do that won’t interrupt the night, like stopping for ice cream or popping into an interesting shop that they pass. Not only does it help take the pressure off of the other person, but it also gives you a sense of responsibility for having a good time throughout the night.

Finally Michelle said she always tries to keep an open mind. There are plenty of guys that turned out to be amazing once she got some one-on-one time with them. Even now she’s dating one such guy, and is still great friends with another. Obviously a lot of men and women are guilty of not giving the other the time of day if they don’t feel that “spark” right away. It seems like a waste of time when you don’t feel anything from the get go. But like the “Huffington Post” says, if you’re still single, it’s obvious that your past type hasn’t been working for you.” You’ll never know if there’s something better out there for you unless you give someone new a shot.

Maybe I won’t have a spotless dating record like Michelle, but by changing my own behavior, hopefully I’ll set myself up for some better first dates in the future.

lyf40

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The One That Won’t Go Away

Some people cannot take a hint.  Guy A from this post is one of those people.

I didn’t go into details about all of the things wrong with this guy, so I’ll elaborate slightly.  He felt that I should cancel/change plans so we could go out.  He felt that I should respond to text messages IMMEDIATELY after he sent one.  He was jealous and insecure (oh, I think I mentioned that in my previous post).  After I didn’t respond to a text message quick enough on my way to church one Sunday, he sent a snarky reply.   That is when I told him to lose my number and have a nice life.  (Oh, he still sent me a message on G-Chat that afternoon; I quickly blocked him.)

That weekend is when DC was hit by Hurricane Sandy.  Two days later, he sent me a text to “check on me” and “make sure I was ok”, to which he got no response.  A week later, because I deleted his number, I answered a call from him.  He totally heard the shock in my voice.  After that call, I saved his number as DNA (Do Not Answer).

A year and a half later, he has popped back up.  A few months ago, he sent me a request to connect on LinkedIn.  And just this week he requested to follow me on Twitter (on my private account).  You would think that after not speaking with someone in almost two years and making it PAINFULLY obvious that you have no desire to speak with or be involved with a person, he would go on his merry little way…but alas, that is not the case in this situation.  In 2012, TyAnthony made sure to ask me if he knew where I lived, to which I was all too happy to state “no” and that he had never been to my house.

So what do you in this situation?  Do you continue to ignore this person that won’t go away?  Do you reach out and once again state to leave you alone?  (I won’t be doing that.)  On the flip side, what makes someone not go away?  What keeps making him reach out?  To see what I’m doing?  To try to make sure he stays in the forefront?  In any event, I wish he would crawl back into the hole he went in in 2012…and stay there.  Until next time, I’m just a Southern girl…in the city.

On The Come Up

Earlier last week, my friend…we’ll call her Miss Chi-Town and I were having a discussion about men and women and babies.  Specifically, we were talking about men that get women pregnant on purpose.   Because we live in a “man’s world”, every bad thing that happens is the fault of women.  And I have heard ad nauseum about women who get pregnant on purpose to trap a man.  But what about men that get women pregnant on purpose?

Let’s be honest.  I live in a city where people are educated and have pretty good jobs, or they are on their way to getting a pretty good job.   But, just as there are women doing well, there are men that are looking for a come up, which essentially means they would like to find a woman to take care of them.  Or least lay up in her house for a while.  And what seems to be a surefire way to make that happen is to have a baby.

After reading this article about Omarion, where he got his girlfriend pregnant on purpose, it really just brought this to life for me even more.

If  can be transparent for a minute, I recently met a guy who seemed like he’s cool.  He’s in his late 20’s, divorced, and is a dad.  But, he seems as is if he has no real ambition.  He works at a bar, where we met, 3 days a week.  When I asked him what he does when he’s not working, his response was, “Chill”.  -_- Say what now?  You all may be thinking I’m jumping the gun a little and should give this dude the benefit of the doubt but…I don’t think so.  And I’ll tell you why.  A few weekends ago, homeboy (let’s call him A.J.) asked if I had any plans.  I told him I was free until around 6 pm.  He stated he and his homeboy wanted to watch the Wizards game.  I asked where they were trying to go, thinking he wanted to meet and hang out with me.  He said, “We wanted to come to your place.”  SAY WHAT NOW?  Now, A.J. and I had yet to go out (due to my going home for a few weeks), and we’ve only talked on the phone.  Not to mention I’m not letting two strangers know where I live.  Not mention I care about my safety.  I told him, “Yeah…I don’t let just anyone come to the Batcave.”

Needless to say, A.J. and I never did have that first date…and we may not ever have it.

I totally think men use women for come-uppance ALL the time.  I think it was shown on “Being Mary Jane” with Avery and Andre, and I have read stories about this happening in real life.   So, to all of you in this crazy dating world, good luck to you!  And be wary of people looking to use you to advance themselves but not offering to bring anything to the table.  Until next time, I’m just a Southern girl…in the city!

He Hasn’t Called…Yet (An Update)

A hard head makes a soft behind…

After speaking with a good friend of mine, who has gotten married and had a baby within the last two years, I decided to follow-up on Jonathan.  Hey, following up with a potential suitor worked out great for her.  Anywho…

On Saturday, I called my groom-to-be friend-let’s call him Brad.  After getting the pleasantries out of the way, I asked Brad what was up with his friend Jonathan.   Brad had read last week’s post but had NO clue I was talking about his brunch.  (SMH, men…) Well, Brad said Jonathan was a good guy, and it was ironic that I called him because he and Jonathan had plans later that night.  So he had no problem asking Jonathan what he thought about me.  During our discussion, Brad mentioned we were ALL feeling happy during the brunch (there were unlimited mimosas, and our waitress may have been a little heavy handed) and that might be attributed to why Jonathan asked for my number-because we were all feeling a little friendly.  Possibly Jonathan hasn’t had a chance to call me due to a busy schedule. Or maybe he didn’t think of me in an “I’m interested” way but maybe in an “Elle is cool people” way.  I told Brad NOT to embarass me, which he assured me he would not do.  We even discussed doing a follow-up post, regardless of Jonathan’s response.  So I’m sure you all are wondering what happened…

Turns out, Jonathan is not interested in Elle; he got my number just to increase his contacts/make connections in DC, so is the reason Brad told me.  And I believe him.  Because if Jonathan WERE interested, he would have called a LONG time ago.  Oh, and he still hasn’t reached out.  But I’m ok with that.  Honestly, as I said to Brad during our conversation, my life is about to get so crazy now that I probably won’t have the time to seriously date anyone.

If, and that’s a BIG if, Jonathan calls, I’ll chat with him.  Besides, every girl needs someone that she can call on to be a Go To Guy.  Until next time, I’m just a Southern girl…in the city!

 

He Hasn’t Called…Yet

Two Sundays ago, I went to the engagement brunch of a couple of which I’m friendly with both parties, but I met the groom-to-be first and am somewhat a closer friend to him than the bride-to-be. I knew NO ONE else at the brunch. But, as luck would have it, I ended up sitting with some fellow South Carolinians, and as more luck would have it, we knew a few of the same people. One young lady and I are from the same (small) city. There was a guy I ended up sitting next to-let’s call him Jonathan. Though there were about 5 of us that kept conversing throughout the brunch, there were times Jonathan and I would have our own private conversations, most of which were initiated by him.

It started to snow (darn you, DC winter!), so everyone starts to scramble to pay their bills and get home before the weather gets bad. After I took a picture with the happy couple (I had to post the good news on Instagram), Jonathan asks for my number. He pulls out his phone, types in my number, AND asks for my last name. Jonathan’s cute, is tall, and has a deep voice, so I’m kinda excited he’s interested. And I can only gather that he’s interested, because HE asked for my number AND went through the trouble of saving it in his phone AND asked for my last name. I mean, that means he’s interested in me, right?

Well, it’s been almost two weeks, and I haven’t heard from Jonathan. Because I overanalyze everything, I begin to think he’s not interested and he’s not gonna call. Or maybe all of his contacts got erased from his phone and he lost my number. Or maybe I should stop tripping and ask for somebody to decipher the guy code. So what do I do? Of course I go to TyAnthony. I give him the scenario and ask why he wouldn’t call. He let me know that sometimes guys ask for a number for sport. He also said he may call-just to give him 2 weeks. My response is, “So he’s not interested? And what am I supposed to do after two weeks?” Ty said he would not have asked for my number if he wasn’t interested; he just may not be as interested as I want him to be. And not to do anything after 2 weeks; I shouldn’t be chasing dudes. Honestly, I swear he must be able to read my mind, because I was seriously thinking about going to my friend and asking about Jonathan. But based on the advice I received, I’ll let it go.

If it’s meant to be, he’ll call. If not, it’s back to the drawing board. Until next time, I’m just a Southern girl…in the city.

Find Your Love in the New Year with Match.com!

http://blog.match.com/

The new year is upon us.  Hopefully you’ve made your New Year’s resolutions.  If you’re single, you may have told yourself that this year is THE year you find love!  And if it is, I’m sure you’ve thought of online dating.   As a matter of fact, in a recent poll,  Match.com found that 51% of singles’ New Year’s resolutions will be to socialize more and focus on finding that special someone, making the desire to connect with someone a driving force for singles’ to get online after the holidays.   And that’s  a pretty significant number.  So Match.com is helping all of the single folks out with a 3 day date pass!  Did you know that Match.com’s peak season, the site’s busiest time of year, kicked off New Year’s Day and spans all the way through Valentine’s Day, where Match will see a 25-30% increase in registrations to the site.  That seems like a great time to join and possibly meet the love of your life!  Simply log onto http://www.match.com/datepass to claim your 3-days free offer. 

Who knows, you could get lucky in love like this Match.com couple — have you seen their proposal?

So what are you waiting for?  Don’t let love wait!  Sign up for Match.com’s 3-day date pass today!  You have nothing to lose, but you have LOVE to gain!  Until next time, I’m just a Southern girl…in the city!

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*This is a sponsored post for Match.com*

It’s Good for the Gander

Based on conversations I’ve had with my dad recently, I think I already know the answer.  Not because we’ve discussed this topic in particular but because we’ve discussed other things, and I believe those topics have given me the answer.  I’m one smart cookie.  🙂

We live in a patriarchal society.  Since the beginning of time, women have been thought of as the weaker, lesser gender.  Some women (and men) have been brought up and raised to believe that men are stronger, smarter, wiser, and just all around the better gender.  During the Feminist Movement until today, women have had to prove that we are just as good as, if not better than, men.  We have to prove we’re tougher, smarter, wiser.  But when it comes to relationships and dating, things get a little tricky.  In our professional careers, we have to be strong and tenacious.  In our personal lives, we have to be demure and ladylike.  But, we also have to show we don’t NEED a man.  That we can take care of ourselves.  What happens when we want companionship and someone to come home to and someone to encourage us?  It’s not always easy out in these streets for a single girl.  There may come a time where we have to weigh our options…see what’s out there.  So we may date two or three lads at once.  And there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that.

“Anything you can do, I can do better! I can do anything better than you!”

I don’t remember what commercial that was from, but I do remember there was a guy and a girl having various competitions over…stuff.  Men have been known to date and pursue multiple women at the same time.  And women were taught to just sit back and wait until the man decided if he wanted you or not.  Well, as I have gotten older, I have decided that there is nothing wrong with a woman keeping her options open.  Meaning, if she wants to date multiple men at the same time, she should have at it!  Now, she should NOT have sex with all these people.  That’s way too much going on.  But, if she’s single, she should enjoy her single life-until one of her suitors decides he wants to be with her exclusively and have a relationship.  And that’s if she wants to be with him exclusively.  Now, IMHO, I don’t think she should volunteer this information to all of the men that she’s dating.  But if he asks her if she’s seeing anyone else, she should be honest.  A few years back, a guy that I had just started seeing, like on the first date, asked me if I was seeing anyone else.  I told him “yes”.  Then he proceeded to ask questions and wanted to know about ol’ boy.  I had to shut that down.  You’re getting to know ME-not the other dude I’m dating.

It also seems as if this phenomenon is a little…shall we say not accepted, when it comes to Black men.  I don’t like to generalize, but I’m sure if I took a poll-and they were honest-Black men would say they would not appreciate it or like it if the woman they were dating was seeing someone else, even if he were dating other women. 

But putting race aside, why is women dating multiple men not looked upon favorably?  Scroll back to the top of this post… Yep, that’s right.  We live in a patriarchal society.  Meaning everything is headed by, led by, and is about MEN!  What benefits the man-what makes the man feel comfortable-what is “better” for the man.  Well, in 2014 and this world of equality, I say if men can date multiple women until he finds The One, then women can, too.  What’s good for the goose is good for the gander.  Until next time, I’m just a Southern girl…in the city!