Looking to Date?

Published by | 12 Comments |

140104238379569743_GnBf0umg_bFrom time to time, friends will send me articles that relate to my blog. I love when this happens! Makes my job a whole lot easier:) My friend Bree sent me this one she found through her friend Lesley. (Lesley has a wonderful blog called barefooton45th.com that you should check out!)

The article is from the NY Times and is called “The End of Courtship?” Click Here to read the whole thing. The basic message is that times have changed and dating as we know it is a thing of the past. Hanging out, hooking up, and ambiguous texts have replaced phone calls, dinners, and grown-up conversations about being exclusive.

In one interview, the article quotes a 30 something woman who says, “The word ‘date’ should almost be stricken from the dictionary. Dating culture has evolved to a cycle of text messages, each one requiring the code-breaking skills of a cold war spy to interpret. It’s one step below a date, and one step above a high-five,” she added. “Dinner at a romantic new bistro? Forget it.”

The article goes on to interview The Gaggle, a dating advice business founded by two women living in New York. I recommend reading this article on them. Thy advise women to start looking at little things like texts, Facebook messages, and group hangouts as real romance gestures and opportunities, not blow offs. Every era has its rules and culture, and ours has changed. Adjust your standards and then you won’t be disappointed.


I’d love to hear what you think about this idea. I have my opinions, as usual, but I thought it would be interesting to discuss. Is it time to change what we expect in dating? Is a male initiated dinner date a thing of the past?

My initial response while reading was “This is absolutely ridiculous! I go on real dates!” But, wanting to keep an open mind, I sat on it for a few days. I could be wrong. Times have changed, especially when it comes to how we communicate with each other. Here is where I’m at with it:

We Get What We Expect

Women will get what they put up with. If we expect tons of confusing texts, endless group hangouts, and the run around, that’s what we’ll get. I don’t think it’s too much to expect a guy to initiate a proper first date in a reasonable window of time if he’s interested. If he doesn’t, I assume he’s not in to me, or I lose interest in him in the meantime. Post college, I’ve never found myself in the middle of some lengthy ambiguous mess of hang outs. I can’t remember ever audibly communicating my expectations, I only know my experience has been that they were met. I say hold out for the real deal…or die alone…which may still be preferable.

Men Don’t Like to Fail

Logically, the idea that men want to disappoint and frustrate a girl they are interested in, as a way to woo her, makes no sense. If he truly likes her, why would he want to go about it the wrong way? Unless it’s a long distance thing, he must a) not like the girl enough b) not want to date someone at the moment, or c) not have the courage to make it happen. Either way, as the girl, don’t you kind of know all you need to know at this point? If he’s dragging you around, …he’s dragging you around.


Men Haven’t Changed

I think the article sold men short. The underlying assumption is that guys can’t or wont initiate dating, mentioning book “The End of Men.” I’ll admit, I had my unpleasant phase of thinking there were no real men on the planet. I’d worry guys were growing up babies and doing anything and everything they could to avoid responsibility and all that. Yes, some are this way, but I don’t think they represent the majority. I’m happy to admit I was wrong. My blog has led to honest conversations with males I wouldn’t otherwise have had, and what I’m learning is that good guys do want to be men, they just don’t always know how to go about it.

When it comes to dating specifically, I can see how it would be hard to know what we want from them. One male friend recently admitted he worries about coming on too strong, seeming creepy, or sending the wrong message. He and his friends worry a girl will think a real date = marriage. Which is when I kindly encouraged him to get over himself, that’s not how we think. (at least those of us who are moderately sane.)

My impression is men want to play by the rules, they just don’t know what they are anymore. As women, we set the rules based on what we’ll entertain.

This is the point where I get to tell you how Steve Harvey confirmed my opinions on the matter.


Yes, Steve Harvey. His talk show to be more embarrassingly exact.

To be fair, I was in a waiting room and that’s the ONLY reason I was watching it. Promise.

Anywhooo… a woman from the audience asked how to become exclusive with a guy given our culture of friends with benefits, hook ups, etc. Tyler Perry looked at her with a dumbfounded face, put his hands on his head and shouted, “Why do you women not get this? Why do you still not understand that you have all the power? Men can only hook up with you, hang out with you, text you IF YOU LET THEM. Men are the same everywhere all over the world…we all want the cookie jar…and you hold the cookie jar!”

What do you think? Ladies, do you think texts and facebook is enough? Guys, do you still ask girls out? You can tell me I’m wrong…happens all the time;)

Share this post:
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • email

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

12 responses to “Looking to Date?”

  1. jenni says:

    I absolutely agree with you on this. Text dating is chicken sh*t and silly. Call me old fashion but if I were single I definitely would be turned off by the texter but it wouldn’t necessarily be a deal breaker. Some guys just need to be coached a bit. I would have no problem telling a guy that he is turning me off by texting and that he and needs to grow a pair or I am not interested. Don’t get me wrong, I love texting! It is all I do now but if I was looking to be pursued by a guy then texting is out. I 100% agree with Tyler Perry. Girls do hold the power but there are too many girls out there ruining that power for the rest. Guys only want one thing and if you keep giving it to them then you have lost all control! It really is that simple:)

    • yes! Chicken sh*t! hahaha, you know my brothers, can’t be bringing that home:) Texting isn’t my favorite way of being pursued, but not a deal breaker. just depends on the situation. And I agree, it’s sad that girls feel they need to go around chasing and giving everything out at once…it confuses everything when it is simple:)

  2. Jenny Dong says:

    I gotta say that this post really hit home for me. Jake and I were talking the other day about how “out of the norm” it was that he asked me out in person, face to face. In the past, I had guys ask me out over email, facebook and text. It was so frustrating!! I get that we are living in a new era technology-wise, but I think that if we get too swept up in it, we miss a lot of things–despite how awkward a guy may feel asking a girl out in person, to me the fact that he is putting himself out there is already a point FOR him. Girls want to be “wooed” sometimes and it is hard to do that over facebook :(

    • Way to go Jake!;) I love what you said about a point FOR him. It’s so true, if only guys knew how much asking face to face helps them get what they want in the first place, maybe it would be less scary??

  3. Alecia says:

    Yep. You get what you expect/accept. So EXPECT/ACCEPT BETTER! You only want in-person invites? Tell him that’s all you accept. Like this: “I only accept dates offered in person or by phone. Quirky, I know, but it’s a something I don’t compromise.” He thinks that’s weird and won’t do it? He’s not your man. It’s doesn’t seem that complicated. Trends are trends because we’ve allowed them to become so. (And yes, easy to say for someone like me who hasn’t had to deal with dating for eons and eons:)

  4. ” Also, these women are in New York. I want to move to the mountains. Maybe these fancy pants girls like these fancy pants guys and don’t mind their fancy pants crap.” loved this part :) it made me laugh. I think this blog is right on. I mean… you discuss all angles and you don’t make sweeping statements… I think the world is one big mess of “we get what we expect” AND guys kind of, sort of, losing their manliness. There are some great catches (they are so rare, and yes, mostly hiding in the mountains in their cute plaid shirts…) and it’s tough. I also think it’s easy for guys to say that “girls have the power” and all that cookie jar cr*p… but I don’t really buy it THAT much. I think that in a way guys really do have a lot of the power when it comes to texting and all that new aged confusing stuff haha Not that they should… but they kind of do. You know? Obviously this blog got me thinking! haha To avoid talking in circles, I’ll stop now :)

    • it is a very complicated world to navigate. And even in my own dating life, every situation is new and has it’s own circumstances that require thought and changing things up. Frankly, I’m not sure how anyone ever gets together:)

  5. Laura says:

    a little late of a reply, but I reference “He’s Just Not That Into You” all.the.time. If he’s not calling, he’s not into you. If a guy is really into you, he will do whatever it takes to spend time with you. Call you, show up on your doorstep, whatever. And if not, mehhh… I lose interest. Because what’s the point? Like the guy on the movie says, “Once, I called 47 Rachels until I found the right one.” It doesn’t have to be a knight in shining armor riding up on a white horse to sweep me off my feet – but an actual date is necessary.

    • Great point, Laura. It can come off cold to have high expectations but you’re right, when guys really like someone, they go the distance. It’s not personal, it’s just the way it is. Thanks for commenting!

  6. Joel Funk says:

    Whoa!!! Cindersss!!! TJ just posted your blog on FB & this is the post I landed on…congrats on the blog & the book deal!!! Good on ya!!! A little male perspective, if I may & it’s not too late, I’m in the mood…this issue has been of some interest to me & I’ve learned much about myself as a guy, as well as the wonderfully mysterious “woman species” by approaching woman in many different contexts & asking them out in the most authentic way possible…over & over & over again. Years ago at Biola when I asked a few girls out it looked like they were going to $#!t their pants!!! It was profoundly awkward…as if dating = marriage. Although, I was not “experienced” in asking woman out at the time so I’m sure my fear played a role in them feeling a the way they did since I’ve learned now that many times feminine beings are like highly sensitive tuning forks & thus resonate & unconsciously reflect back to you what you as a man are feeling in the moment. The more comfortable a guy is with his desire for a woman, & that desire is integrated in his body & heart, & he’s appreciative of her beauty but unattached to the outcome, the more positive the outcome will be, even if she says no. It’s a delicate balance, but when done appropriately, will lift her spirits b/c she has received a genuine complement & he walks away realizing that her “no” didn’t kill him & can go on to live another day & ask out another woman who hopefully reciprocates his sentiment. Outside of the christian bubble, asking woman out is a completely different experience, much more normal, so to speak, if that could ever be.

    One thing woman have to realize is how profoundly difficult it is for some guys to ask woman out. The fear & anxiety I would experience has been paralyzing, it literally felt like I was facing my death, as, in exposing my desire for her, she had the power to kill me. If I chickened out the pain was also enormous. Eventually, through much work on myself, I found a way to embrace the process, so to speak & still move forward. That being said, the guy has to make the move, take the lead, & not hide behind text messages & technology!! The only way I learned was by much trial & error, study, asking questions, practicing with amazing intuitive woman who gave amazing feedback, & geezus christ despite all that it still is crazy hard asking out a woman after all these years!!! Our society does a terrible job of teaching men how to be a True Man & the Church especially does a shit job of shaming men (and woman for that matter) into cutting off from their desire b/c it’s “sinful,” rather than learn how to honor their sexual desire as the profound gift that it is, how to embody it & express it, when appropriate, with integrity & the fullness of their being.

    Keep it up…good to see your rockin’ da $#!t in ways I never expected back in tha day!!!

    • cindyannjohnson says:

      Joel! How the heck are you?! This was one of the best comments I’ve received. Thanks for taking the time and for sharing honestly! It sounds you’ve had your own go of it since college. I’m glad you brought up dating in xtian circles vs. non xtian. I agree that it’s different and often feels simpler and more clear cut outside. We can get to know each other without the assumption or pressure that it is for sure going somewhere. Wish it could be that way with xtians! It would be a lot more fun.

      It must be terrifying to ask someone out..especially if you don’t do it often. I’m glad I don’t have that role! I’d prefer to stay on this side:) The hard part for us is waiting around or trying to “figure out” what is going on. That is the one time I wish I just had the control in the situation. All and all, it’s a miracle anyone makes it work as far as I’m concerned:)

      Thanks again for your comment! Hope you are doing well!

Leave a Reply

Leave a Reply