Annoying Texters: Social Epidemic?

by Caryn Alper under Date Night,JDate,Online Dating,Single Life

Hey, wut up!! ;)

Have you ever been annoyed, frustrated, or confused by a text message? If so, you’re certainly not alone. We are in the midst of a texting epidemic that is particularly puzzling and detrimental to new daters! I’m not blaming the concept of texting – it can be very useful in certain situations and definitely has its time and place (ever tried to locate a friend at a loud bar or concert?). However, it can also produce misconstrued, mysterious messages that cause way more anxiety and analysis than necessary.  I’ll talk more about the problems with texting in a later article, but for now, I present to you a field guide to identify some of the more common types of offenders.  Are you dating or pursuing one?

  1. The Narrators
  • Common texts: “Hey, good morning! How are you? I am feeding my cat. lol” “How was your Tuesday? Work was really busy today b/c I had 2 meetings and met a friend for lunch.” “I am watching house of cards. This show is so awesome.”
  • Also may send pictures of food or pets with no explanation.

In the beginning (and middle) of dating or a relationship, Narrators can get annoying. Unless you both agree you enjoy this constant monologue, most people are too busy to keep up with this stream of consciousness, and even more people are turned off by the lack of intrigue. If you are narrating in an effort to ask someone on a date, forget the chit chat and ask her out!

  1. The Non-Responders
  • Common texts: “ya” or “k” in response to something said an hour ago.

Be wary of non-responders, who are the opposite of narrators. If you are a non-responder, take note that you may come across as indifferent or disinterested, which may or may not be your intention. If you are trying to communicate with a non-responder, stop sending messages and see what happens. If all communication stops, move on.  Yeah, some people are too busy to respond, but non-responders are notoriously just not that in to you.

  1. The Sporadics
  • Common texts: “hey, what are you doing now?”… 3 weeks later… “how r u?”

Sporadics are tolerable under few circumstances. If this behavior doesn’t bother you, then respond as you please. But, know that people who send these kinds of messages are most likely either uninterested in a serious relationship with you, or are keeping you on back burner while they try to date their higher priorities. My suggestion: ignore.

  1. The Pointless Chatters
  • Common texts: “hey, how’s your day?” “how’s it going?” “what are you up to this week?”

I know this is really common banter early on, sometimes even before the first date. If this is an attempt to ask someone out, however, forego the small talk and ask her out! If this is an attempt to flirt, try something actually flirtatious. If this is you being bored or lonely, text a friend, vacuum your house, or organize your sock drawer.

When IS texting appropriate and welcome? To let someone know you are running late or on the way. To tell someone you are thinking about him or looking forward to a date. To send a quick reminder or funny note. But not to say “hey” 11 times a day. And not to engage in real conversations. That’s what tweets are for! Jk jk, lol :p


Differing Expectations

by Caryn Alper under Date Night,JDate,Online Dating,Relationships

I once read that there is a small but noticeable spike in breakups shortly following Valentine’s Day.  Initially, I thought perhaps people were waiting until after Feb. 14 to break things off so they wouldn’t have to be alone on the “holiday.”  But, then I wondered if the timing of these breakups occurred because of residual disappointment. Maybe he forgot to acknowledge the day, but you really wanted him to send you flowers at work. Or maybe he made reservations at an expensive restaurant, but you’re much more comfortable cooking at home.  Particularly in the very early stages of dating, these non-reciprocal expectations (NRE, as the professionals – or really just I – call it) can destroy budding relationships!

Valentine’s Day might be a relatively insignificant example of how non-reciprocal expectations can result in disappointment… or worse.  I’m sure we have all fallen victim to other examples of an NRE-scenario in some way or another:  you paid for dinner and expected a kiss, but she gave you a cold hand shake; you thought he would meet your parents on his day off, but he expected to go out of town, etc.  It sure is disappointing! But why does this happen? Where do expectations come from?

Well, not to get all Freudian, but we form a lot of these expectations in childhood.  Our family of origin, the environment we live in, our own personal experiences – all of these start forming our outlook on the world from a young age, and through trial and error, we learn to harbor certain beliefs and expectations in certain situations.

Because we learn how to develop expectations from a pretty deeply rooted and personal place, it can be jarring to manage your expectations to mesh with someone else’s.  This is true in any relationship, but especially in romantic relationships, which focus on pleasing the other person.  Say you start sending messages back and forth with a seemingly normal guy. You expect that he should ask you out after four messages. You then grow disappointed when he doesn’t do just that. Or, say after several good dates with someone, you expect that she should remove her profile from JDate… but she hasn’t, and you’re concerned.  So what’s a JDater to do?

Other than erasing all expectations from your brain and entering every new situation with a completely blank mental slate, there’s a relatively simple way to identify someone else’s expectations before it’s too late. I’m talking about a radical solution here… you could communicate! You know, like actually talk to the other person and explain what you’re thinking.  I am not saying you should present a list of demands, nor am I suggesting that you remove all spontaneity from your dating life.  And do not verbalize that you expect mediocre conversation and a tentative goodnight kiss. However, do communicate your hopes and intentions!

To help our aforementioned friends in the example above, a simple, “Hey, I think we seem to get along pretty well… want to meet up in person?” or “You know, I enjoy dating you and am not interested in meeting other people – how do you feel?” A simple question or two should do the trick.  Put your expectations and thoughts out there… in the open!  The worst that can happen is that the other person has an incompatible or unreasonable expectation with which you can’t compromise, and you reach an impasse.  But if that’s the case, I expect that relationship to fail, anyway.

 


Safety First

by Haley Plotnik under Date Night,Online Dating,Single Life

I date a lot of guys, and I like to think that I do a pretty good job vetting the guys and assessing their character. However, I’m still pretty wary of first dates. Safety tends to be compromised when people get complacent. If it’s a first date, I meet in daylight and in public. I never let them see where I live: not the neighborhood, street, or building. If I can safely take public transit, I do. If not, I don’t typically go directly home from the date unless it’s more than a 15-minute drive. Call me paranoid, but I know that sexual assault and rape unfortunately happen.

Rewind to last year. I went on a date with a guy who I’ve known since I was 16. I thought him to be an upstanding person. He had just moved into a new house a few hours north of mine. After spending a day together, his mom made us a healthy dinner that we ate with his family. The whole thing seemed very sweet and wholesome. He then took me down a hallway to his new room. I sat on his bed to take off my shoes. My feet were tired and swollen after a long day of walking. Next thing I knew, he had one hand down my pants and the other was reaching into my bra. Since things escalated very quickly, I had to fight him off a bit. He was being very aggressive and his eyes looked mean in a way I’d never seen before. Luckily I nipped things in the bud very quickly, but I was taken aback by what happened. I was heartbroken that someone I had trusted – and someone I had known for years – turned out to be so shady.

My good female friend always says, “If you’re only friends, you have to ask before you stick your hands where the sun doesn’t shine.” Clearly my date didn’t know that. Of the nearly 30 dates I’ve been on, only one has taken a scary turn. However, one is enough. One is too much. And not everyone escapes as lucky as I did. Maybe you spare yourself that one date by being slightly more careful. I think it’s well worth the trouble.

Click here for a full list of safety tips from JDate.


Annoying Affection

by Tamar Caspi under Relationships

At some point in your dating career, you will end up with someone who is annoyingly affectionate. Usually you already have an inkling that this person isn’t “The One” — and so everything they do is annoying, but whether it’s a first date or a one-year anniversary, there are people out there who don’t realize their type of affection is anything but loving.

It’s those people who constantly touch you — regardless of if you’re eating, sleeping, in the midst of a fight, talking, walking, crying, getting ready, cooking, you get the point. Affection is (usually) welcome, as long as its the right amount at the right time. Some people don’t like to be touched when they are doing certain things or feeling a certain way and anyone interested in being with you long-term needs to learn to both read your body language and your moods!


Dating Advice, As Presented By Lil Jon

by Adam under Relationships

Lil Jon was characterized by his excessive use of three exclamations “YEAH!” “OK!” and “WHHAATT” (extra emphasis on the extension of the word “what”) in his songs, as well as his ability to speak incoherently in successive lyrics. While Lil’ Jon was great to dance to as a high school freshman, mine, as well as others’ enjoyment of his booty-shaking songs waned as other rappers, with better command of the English language, and more creativity in their albums, came on the scene.

What does this have to do with dating?

Think about this. 90% of the time (feel free to dispute my facts) guys are attracted to girls (or girls to guys, or guys to guys or girls to girls) based on physical attraction. Period.

Why does it usually end? Someone isn’t interested anymore, or someone cheats.

Why does this usually happen? 90% of the time (again, feel free to dispute this claim) disgruntled parties cite a “lack of communication”.

What is a lack of communication? Most of the time, disinterested parties will answer their partner’s questions with the common answers of “YEAH!” “OK!” and “WHHHAATT?” not providing a succinct answer to question and usually answering in a combative, angry undertone that leads to a long and drawn out fight which may cut into your normal couple time of making vegetarian food and watching Keeping Up With the Kardashians. Which reminds me, I need to go check my DVR.

Do not let your dating life and relationship crumble like Lil Jon’s popularity. Communicate, and you will see positive results.


You’re Hot Then You’re Cold

by Tamar Caspi under Relationships

Temperature can mean a lot of things in a relationship but whichever definition you use, you want your mate’s temperature to complement yours. Whenever I’m freezing, my husband luckily isn’t and he can lend me his jacket. My hubby and I both kick our feet out from under the sheets while we sleep. And when I’m feeling down he peps me up. But when you’re dating and you’re still looking for that person you will find that you won’t always balance out.

Then there’s the messages you’re receiving – one day your date is interested and the next your date is nowhere to be found. When you speak, your date is present and involved but your texts are never returned. One day your relationship is hot n heavy and the next day your relationship is as cold as a dead fish. This is not a healthy relationship. And if you can recognize this early on then you should move on because you deserve to be desired on a consistent basis. Chemistry is not always physical and sexual, but is also a meshing of two personalities and lives.


Fighting Fair

by Tamar Caspi under Relationships

Getting into a fight with someone you’re dating can be both good and bad. If you’re able to communicate your way out of it and grow from it, then your relationship seems like its on really solid ground and on the right path. But if one person is screaming and yelling, or if one person storms out of the room all the time, or if one person clams up and doesn’t speak, then it may not be the right match. Not to say that it couldn’t work, but fighting is an important part of any relationship and how you fight is more important than how you are when you’re getting along. Don’t call names, don’t make digs, and try to recognize when you’re at fault. And if you’re fighting a little too often, decide if this is really right for you before the relationship goes any farther.


Keep it to Reap it

by Tamar Caspi under Relationships

Every single time I would meet someone I would tell everyone about it. I would talk about how happy I was, how amazing the new guy was, what we were doing, when and where we were going on dates, how much we had in common, the future I imagined us sharing and so on and so forth. The simple fact is that I was excited and hoped time and again that this was the one. Of course, until recently, it never was. And each time there was a break-up I was left having to answer questions and inquiries about the relationship from people who only had good intentions but didn’t know any better.

Another perk to keeping a new love interest to yourself is to keep out the naysayers. Friends of yours who are single and saw the same person on JDate or at a singles event may be jealous. These so-called friends may show support to your face, but they may not be sending as positive of vibes behind your back. When you’re single and putting yourself out there, you don’t need anything to get in your way, and that includes any negativity put out into the universe with your name on it. Until it gets serious, keep it to yourself. It will be more special and more authentic that way.

Guys seem to understand this better than women. Most women like to immediately introduce their newest flame to all their friends, whether to show him off or to see how he meshes with your friends or for a plethora of other reasons. Guys, on the other hand, wait as long as humanly possible before introducing a new girl to their friends. Whether they’re worried about the girl seeing them in their element or not wanting to risk their friends outing them as a player or for whatever the reason, guys tend to wait and it would behoove more women to do the same. Keep it to yourself for as long as possible and you will reap the rewards. And if it doesn’t pan out, there will be fewer people to (unintentionally, of course) rub it in your face and remind you of yet another failed relationship on the road to finding your Beshert.


Is Online Dating Turning Into Twitter?

by jpompey under Online Dating,Relationships

Is online dating turning more into Twitter than ever before?

These days we can access all of our online dating applications through our mobile devices.   What does this mean?  More and more people are no longer taking the time to sit down and actually write well, thought out emails.  Responses are being sent by women while on the go as if they are Twitter updates or responding to text messages.

With each day that passes, I see more emails coming in that are two sentences or fewer.  Many of them barely acknowledge a lot of the information that was written in the previous response, and are just casual, “Twitter-like” responses.

They still show interest.  They still want to talk.  But the effort is not there and they are coming in more brief than ever.

In the fast paced world we live in, is this the future of the way we communicate.  Simple, shallow, rushed responses.  Are we devolving even more than ever?  Will people eventually no longer sit down and write emails? 

I see this as a strong possibility!


Too Soon?

by JeremySpoke under Date Night,JBloggers

I have been on a cold streak (10 years) when it comes to dating. I am really good at meeting my date. I say, “Hello.” and listen to her answer. Then, I conduct myself as a normal human being interacting in a way that employs both my verbal and physical abilities. I listen to her talk and answer accordingly. I laugh when she says something clever and cast sympathetic eyes when she tells me something sad. I sit and hold back my conversation in order to let her speak more about herself. I also offer to pay if we are patronizing a place of business. If she insists, I let her pay for because a.) I have almost no money, and b.) I want to show her that I’m progressive, too. I am so progressive that I’ll let her pay for my entire meal.

Though I think I am handling myself well and carefully, I don’t think that I look and sound like what I think I look and sound like. What, to me, seems like genuine laughter at one of her anecdotes may, in fact, look like a crazy person punching the table and kicking wildly while laughing two octaves higher than most humans can speak. What, to me, seems like pensive thought while she shares something somber, instead, looks like utter confusion and profuse sweating. As I sit and try to listen, I seem to laugh intermittently at just the right moments and at just the right volume. Though, in reality, this looks like a manic seizure that years of therapy and Xanax have not fixed. Though I think that I am being progressive by letting her pay, I am in fact regressing the date back to 1955 when the woman was in charge of feeding her man.

I am now at a point where I feel a strong compulsion to text the girl immediately after every date because I am so afraid that she will never want to see me again. I know I shouldn’t do it, but I feel such a strong urge to do so. Tonight, after another first date that I thought went relatively well, I texted her about twenty minutes after the date. This time, she said she’d like to go out again. I wonder what a second date is like.