We are happy to feature a guest blogger this week, The Dating Girl in Florida, to discuss your dating standards.
Friends shouldn’t let friends go on bad dates
It is tough out there being single. Dating is something that constantly evolves and changes with time. You learn as you go, and you try to do your best. Some dates are good, while others are not so good… Either way, you always like to talk to your friends about them, and many times you get their advice, whether you ask for it or not. We all know your friends and family want what is best for you, and they are giving you the advice that they think will be of help. The problem is, many of them haven’t been in the dating world for years, or, they may not be in tune with what is best for you, and what qualities you are looking for in a person. Sometimes friends do get you out of your shell and get you to consider some people you may not have considered before. Other times, they push to go on dates, that you shouldn’t be going on in the first place.
I like to chat on the phone before meeting someone. Yet some people could argue that many people aren't good on the phone. But no, I am going to disagree with that, as it pertains to me. If I want an outgoing and talkative person, they are going to be good on the phone. The conversation will flow. I want someone who is my best friend, who I can talk to. Any of my friends can hold a phone conversation. Yes, even the guys.
On Plenty of Fish, I had a guy in his late 30s, in advertising, from South Beach who liked me. When I read his profile, I saw that he was looking for casual dating. I emailed him thanking him for his interest, but explained that I was looking for something more serious. He explained that he was looking to date, but would want something serious if he found the right girl.
When you think about it, unless you are one of those girls that needs to be married yesterday, most people are like that (except if you are looking for casual sex). If you are looking to date that leads to a relationship, you need to say that.
I gave him the benefit of the doubt and continued the conversation. He asked to meet and I said that I wanted to get to know him a bit first. I gave him my number and said that he could call me.
He said he would call me that weekend, which he didn't. He called me on Tuesday. Eee, that was about a 7-8 day lag time. He left a message and I didn't return his call since he was not impressing me at all with his mediocre effort. Then he called again the next night. Ok, that was a bit better on the effort scale.
I called him back a short bit after he left a voicemail (the second day/time), but got his voicemail, so I didn't leave a message. He texted me the next day that he was sorry he had missed my call (I am sure you are already bored reading this, since it wasn't that exciting going through it either). I explained in a text that I was turned off with him taking so long to call. He explained that he was really busy with work but would still like to meet up. I declined, explaining that I still want to have a phone conversation because personality is significant. I went on to say that someone's word is very important to me. I understand that people get busy, but with technology today there is no excuse for not telling someone what is going on. He agreed. I said I was busy for the next two weeks but could possibly do something after. He was OK with that, and said he hoped to meet me in two weeks.
Ten days later I checked in with him. He answered my text immediately. He called me the next day and the conversation was just OK. Some pauses, but just a basic conversation. He did happen to know some of the comedians I liked, so I thought back to this idea...When discussing with some (a tad older and married) friends this story. They brought up that sometimes people aren't good on the phone. However, it has been my experience in online dating, that 100% of the time, if the phone conversation isn't good, it won't be better in person. But, I felt open minded and decided to give him a chance. Maybe he just hadn't found a girl he wanted to make more effort with? He did like some of the comedians I liked, so maybe he would be better in person than over the phone?
We discussed the plans via text. He asked if we could meet halfway and I suggested the Village at Gulfstream. He didn't really give me much to go on, so I had to ask the time and what we were doing. He said we could meet at 8pm for dinner and appetizers.
I didn't hear from him the next day at all. (Many times if someone is interested they will reach out each day. And if there is a date on the agenda, they will say they are looking forward to it.)
The day of the date he texts me at 5:30pm suggesting to meet at the Yard House. I said, "Sure," to which he immediately responded that he was going to be 30 minutes late, asking if 8:30pm was cool with me. This was a Thursday night, so we were pushing it a bit late, but I really didn't have much of an option, did I?
As I got there at 8:30pm, he texted me saying he was going to be 10 minutes late. All I could think of was how I was right about my call of not being interested due to his weak courtship efforts and phone conversation. But, I was here, might as well get it over with.
My waitress was a total sweetheart so I was having a laugh with her explaining that I was waiting for a bad first date. Before she felt too sorry for me I told her not to, that in the very least, it was going to make for some great material on my dating blog. Of course, she wanted to read my blog. ;)
I am always happy to snag a possible blog follower and make someone else laugh at any downhill disaster I am embarking on. I looked at my phone and it was 8:52pm. Whoa!!! Screw that. If he didn't show by 9pm, I was gone. I decided to give him one last chance texting, "Ok. It's 8:52...." and he responds with, "I here." Three minutes later he sat down. And surprise surprise, the date was just as dull as the phone conversation. He didn't seem very apologetic or concerned that he showed up an hour later than our original date, let alone kept me waiting for half an hour.
When I asked what happened, he explained that he was helping a friend move his couch in Midtown Miami. Wow, he totally knows how to make a girl feel special, right? I thought to myself how there I was on a bad date, whom I could care less about. Hmm, I could get rude or say anything I want to see how he reacts? Ok, I am not that daring yet.
I did have fun exchanging glances with the waitress about how we both knew this date was going poorly. But, I was able to feel much more comfortable than in the past, taking the lead towards ending the date. When he ordered his third glass of beer, I asked for the check. (I had half a glass of wine.)
The best part was, the waitress gave me a piece of paper in a "bill case/folder" so I could secretly write my blog down for her. That was a very smart call on her part and totally made me smile!When I looked up, I saw he had already paid the bill. He wanted to keep talking but I just said that it was past my bedtime (yes, 10pm on a Thursday) and moved us up and out.
I asked where he parked, and he motioned in the opposite direction where I was. (Phew!!!) I rushed in saying it was great meeting him and thanked him for the drinks. I gave him a hug and was gone. He barely had a chance to say anything but goodbye.
I like to think everything and anything is a learning experience. I learned that you really need to trust your instincts and guidelines that work for you when it comes to dating. Sure, some people might be bad on the phone, but that person is just not right for me. Yes, I appreciate that my friends really are trying to do the best they can with giving me advice because they want me to be happy. But, I still need to heavily weigh my experiences and insight along with it. And yes, I will always listen to them, because they may have a different side that I never thought of.
Their hearts are in the right place, because they want to believe that dating can be good natured and you need to give people the benefit of the doubt.
You have to learn to take people as they are, and not what they could be. If they are not doing a great job in the beginning, it will not be getting better anytime soon. So if you have a friend that is single, please encourage them to take off the rose-colored glasses and see their potential date as they really are. Look for good core values, similar interests, and a personality that fits them.
In the past I have complained that I never knew how to move dates along. That night I learned how you can take the lead to hurry a date along. And, if you really don't care about the guy, you can be a lot stronger with the direction of the date.
A special thank you to our guest blogger, The Dating Girl in Florida, from Great Adventures in Dating.