Most people know that good dating etiquette involves some give and take. You ask questions about him, and he asks questions about you. It’s a balancing act; you don’t want to be asking all of the questions, but you don’t want to be caught just talking about yourself either. It’s amazing how many people don’t know this basic rule of not only dating but just conversation in general.
Just the other night I was sitting with a group, and a guy talked to me about all of his investments and his dog the entire time. Never once did he ask me about myself, my dogs, or my dreams of investing in one of the new cupcake ATMs. Listening to someone talk about themselves ad nauseam can be exhausting and cause the listener to tell you they need to go shovel their driveway because it’s more pleasant than talking to you.
One of my girlfriends has dated a guy off and on for many years. They’ve been “off” for the last eight years. When they got back together, all the guy did was talk about all of the drama he’s been through. In six dates and numerous phone calls and texts, never once did he ask what she had been doing for the last eight years.
To further my point, she miserably watches football with him without uttering a single complaint, but he won’t go to the ballet with her. She spent two days making him a thoughtful Valentine’s Day gift; he sent her a four-word text. She goes to his house, but he has never been to hers. He’s super handy and does projects on his house but never offers to help her with projects on her house. Lastly, let’s just say she makes sure he walks away with a kick in his step, but he doesn’t make sure she walks away with the same kick.
When did a person that my friend was once so in love with become so broken that he can’t even think of anyone but himself? When did everything start to revolve around his needs and not their needs? Is this irreparable damage, or is there some secret solution? Is there a point in life that we just become so irreparably broken that we become unlovable? Have we, as a society, become so isolated that we can do nothing but talk about ourselves when around others?
When I think about it, maybe people toot their own horn because they feel insecure. Maybe they think the other person is boring or does nothing, so why bother asking what’s new with them?
Maybe my friend’s on-again-off-again boyfriend doesn’t really love her. When you love someone, you like doing things that they like, you tell them you love them, you would help her with her projects, and, above all, you would make sure she walks away with a kick in her step.
Maybe the guy with the investments and the dog was trying to impress me. Needless to say, I’m far more impressed by someone with good manners that can balance the conversation and show some interest in my life. I mean, really, if he wants to invest in something, what could be better than a cupcake ATM?
May you all show interest in others, and may you all have a kick in your step.