Dating in today’s world can be stressful. The way we interact with each other is constantly changing, and technology is aiding in the demise of many relationships before they even get started. Check out this article to see if you’re up to speed with today’s dating etiquette.
Text messaging, online dating, Facebook chatting – all these innovations forever changed the way in which people meet, date, and fall in love. While it’s now much easier to learn everything about a prospective partner by simply Google-ing their name, this also robs us of the thrill of getting to know them one on one. People are so dependent on technology that they barely know how to communicate with potential lovers face-to-face. Doing it through the cold touch of a keyboard may be less stressful, but it’s also less exciting.
My now ex-boyfriend was older than me and not as technology-savvy. He didn’t even have a Facebook profile, which, I must admit, almost felt like a deal-breaker after our first date. Looking back, I can’t believe how silly my thinking used to be. He taught me how wonderful it is to connect with someone face-to-face, how fun it can be to call instead of text, how much more meaningful words feel when they’re said in person. Unfortunately, there is no formality to dating anymore, so everyone is treating their prospective partners with the same casualness they would a friend. He didn’t do that; instead, he allowed me to understand that relying so heavily on technology to communicate can rob you of some spectacular moments it’s much more fun to experience when you’re cheek to cheek.
Before you embark on a quest to find Mr. or Ms. Right, I’ve listed a few dating etiquette tips below we should all live by even in the modern world.
1. Avoid Exaggerations
When it comes to online dating, we all tend to expose our best selves on the Internet. However, make sure you don’t exaggerate too much or, worse, lie. There’s no use to tell someone you go to the gym five times per week when, in fact, you haven’t been on a treadmill for ages. If you ever do decide to go on a date, you’re only setting yourself up for failure. Be honest – this way, your chances of meeting someone with whom you’re actually compatible significantly increase.
2. Don’t Facebook-Friend Too Quickly
It might be tempting to Facebook-friend your potential partner after the first date, but this might come off as creepy, so contain yourself. They might think you’ve been stalking them online and run in the opposite direction. Wait two-three dates until you push the “Add as friend” button.
3. Don’t Break Up Via Text
I’m baffled every time I hear that people still do this. It’s not OK. Have the decency to look the other person in the eye and explain why you’re ending the relationship. Never break up via text, email, or instant message. This basically says “I’m too much of a coward to face you,” while simultaneously suggesting that you couldn’t care less about your significant other. Not cool.
On the same note, never express feelings via text or instant message. Always do it in person. It’s a thousand times better.
4. Respect Their (Cyber) Privacy
Don’t snoop through their online accounts; trust me, no good can come of this. On the same note, never post anything online that your partner isn’t comfortable with – whether we’re talking about their deep love for steamy novels from Ravenous Romance or their dysfunctional relationship with their family. No matter how small you think the detail you want to share with your online buddies may be, you never know what may upset your partner. Always double-check with them to make sure they’re OK with you sharing that piece of information.
5. Watch Your Tone
When you’re face-to-face, your partner gets to read your body language and sense your tone of voice. There’s no such thing when you’re communicating online. Emojis may help, but they’re still not enough. Always be specific about what you mean and don’t let your partner guessing – unless you want them to stress over what your current mood is for the rest of the day.
Dating etiquette is constantly evolving. The important thing to remember is to treat your partner with respect and never to make public anything they wouldn’t like to see online. Keep something for just the two of you and away from the rest of the world. You will appreciate it more this way.