A few weeks ago, I made the first move. And it was glorious. A perfect "wait, you too?!" moment. What ensued was two weeks worth of flirty texts and two-hour phone calls during road trips that make you remember just how fun it is to get the butterflies. And then.
Last night, after a week's worth of radio silence, I sent out an SOS. A flirty, "to hell with it, I'll never see you again" text to check the waters again. Today (a full 24 hours later), I heard back from the fellow for the first time in over a week.
"Sorry for being absent. Been hectic l8ly."
My first reaction (besides thinking who the eff still texts using numbers to abbreviate?) was to text a quick "Oh you're fine, you don't need to apologize for anything." But then, I stopped. Did he owe me an apology? Was he fine? The fact is, everything had been going great and then radio silence....so was it really "fine"? If I was being honest, what would I say?
But really, what would I say? We are taught that a woman who cuts all communication after a break-up or failed one night stand is "handling it with grace" and "cutting her losses." A woman who holds the man accountable and asks for an explanation or dares tell them that their action was rude/deusch-y/etc is "having trouble moving on." Who picked those descriptors? Who decided that not speaking your mind was "graceful" and "tactful"? Shouldn't we be encouraging people to speak their mind, good or bad?
My blog is most often found by typing into Google "dating disasters comedy blog." But my reaction to his text today made me think, am I setting myself up for a dating disaster? If I tell him it's fine, that he has nothing to apologize for, I'm really giving him a free pass. Granted, this is someone I've just been texting with so it's not life or death. But, I think this same thing is applicable to more serious relationships. If you tell your significant other that "it's fine," they really are getting a free pass to go on about their life and keep repeating that bad behavior. How often have you been out with your girlfriends and told some dating disaster story and their response is a sympathetic "oh he totally knows better, what a dick." Does he? What if we're all running around saying "he knows better," but he doesn't actually know better because no one has told him? We're all assuming someone did, or will, but no one actually does say "that was a dick move, don't do it again."If we continue to run around the dating pool without speaking up for ourselves and just assuming that some girl some where at some time told him what we're really dying to tell him, are we setting ourselves up for a dating disaster? And how can we ever break this cycle if a woman who cuts all communication with a bad date/relationship is deemed "tactful" and "graceful" and someone who doesn't is met with a raised eyebrow and a "hot mess" label?
If I look at my life for evidence, I would have to admit that the idea I sometimes set myself up for dating disasters is true. I'm trying to lose weight and make a healthy lifestyle, and I brought a box of cupcakes home from work. I want to be a nonprofit executive director, but I procrastinate signing the paperwork that would be the next step in making that happen. Examples are endless. I'm setting myself up (potentially) for disaster.
How would dating change if we were all completely honest? No, it's not fine. Yes, you do owe me an explanation. Explanation received? Cool. No hard feelings. But, if you're hoping to find a long-term significant other in the near future I encourage you to stop that annoying action.
What do you think? Are we setting ourselves up for dating disasters by not being honest? When did being honest become synonymous with being negatively critical? Would you rather date a completely honest person, or does the thought of potential "harsh honesty" scare you?
Oh, and I still haven't said anything back. Because I don't know what to say. Society taught me to make excuses for people and say "oh you're fine, you don't need to apologize." But maybe I don't want to make excuses for people anymore.
Move over, Carrie. There's a new single girl in town.