Tuesday, July 14, 2009

frustrated

Ezzie has a post up about how people prefer not to date people on the “quieter side,” and he suggests that people not describe others that way, as it could prejudice potential dates against that part of their personality. He makes other good points and so you should hop on over there and read it.

But you know what else is true in dating? People don’t want the really outgoing ones either. People don’t want intensity. They don’t want passion. They want “reasonably outgoing.” Not too shy, but not too loud either. Definitely not someone with opinions, who doesn’t have qualms about putting them out there. People want… I don’t know, cupcakes? Mice? Little sweet girls who just giggle and smile and nod and never say anything? Girls who won’t tell you if they might have a better suggestion for a date place, because Heaven forbid they should actually voice an opinion! Or make -- gasp! -- a decision!

I can be slightly overwhelming. I know that. I can be overly critical and vocal about things. I know that too. And I know that those are qualities that need to be worked on and can sometimes be unpleasant to others. But I just wish people would look past that and see that I’m like that because I care about things, because I’m passionate about the world, because I feel deeply about justice and honesty, instead of just seeing it as “insulting” and “relentless” and “high standards.”

9 comments:

Ezzie said...

Great post, firstly.

People don’t want the really outgoing ones either. People don’t want intensity. They don’t want passion. They want “reasonably outgoing.” Not too shy, but not too loud either.

What's odd is that two completely opposing thoughts occurred to me at this point:

1) So true.
2) That's not true, look at my wife!

This sent me off on a number of thoughts, so I hope I can remember them all...

* There is a difference between the shy and outgoing in terms of issue. Shy is an issue that stops people from getting dates in the first place because of how they're described. Outgoing people are rarely described as "too outgoing", just as "really outgoing" - which people translate as a way of saying "don't worry, she's not quiet!" This means they get the date, but the person is already wary of "is she too outgoing" and actually speaking up will be taken the wrong way. The outgoing issue is more of a date issue - people react very judgmentally on the first few dates, looking for No reasons, and therefore someone who is more outgoing can be viewed as "outspoken" or "overly opinionated" or whatever. I think that ties in very closely with Bad4's post from last week.

* I was trying to remember why I was more interested rather than less interested in Serach considering my sometimes distaste for very outspoken/outgoing people. I don't know that it was her not expressing opinions; I'm reasonably sure that she expressed quite a few (albeit ones I agreed with strongly).

I can be slightly overwhelming. I know that. I can be overly critical and vocal about things. I know that too. And I know that those are qualities that need to be worked on and can sometimes be unpleasant to others. But I just wish people would look past that and see that I’m like that because I care about things, because I’m passionate about the world, because I feel deeply about justice and honesty, instead of just seeing it as “insulting” and “relentless” and “high standards.”

That's a tough one. As with anything, there's the "put your best foot forward" point. Everyone has traits that they're working on, and it's hard not to let those slip out (and I don't think "hiding" them is a solution). At the same time, there's that important need for balance, to make sure that the positive side of those same traits is what comes across strongly. Most "negative" traits come hand in hand with positive ones. Laid back = Lazy. Outgoing = opinionated. Fun = not serious. Funny = immature. Being able to acknowledge how your good traits get you in trouble is a good way of showing that you are aware of what you need to work on, rather than giving the impression of "this is how I am, deal with it". This lets people see past the negative side of those things and understand how those traits give you the aspects the person does like.

Grr. Don't know how all that is coming across vs. what I mean. And I forgot the rest... I'll be back.

הצעיר שלמה בן רפאל לבית שריקי ס"ט said...

Big difference between being "overwhelming" and "overly critical" and voicing an opinion. ..anyway, most of the guys don't have too many opinions themselves..

..anyway, this is less true for Modern Orthodox..

Erachet said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Erachet said...

I'm reasonably sure that she expressed quite a few (albeit ones I agreed with strongly).

Well, that's an important thing right there.

I think people are more turned off by very opinionated people when they disagree with them than when they agree. It's hard to disagree with people who are so passionate about their opinions that they don't even listen and try to understand your own point of view. It's like talking to a brick wall, but one that not only doesn't listen, it also yells back.

הצעיר שלמה בן רפאל לבית שריקי ס"ט said...

Erachet: I never learned what your sceen name means by the way..the only possibility to me right now seems to be an amalgam of the words "era" in English and the letter "chet" in Hebrew..which still makes very little linguistic sense, so..

Josh M. said...

The important thing to bear in mind is that you're not looking for "people", you're looking for a single person. Dating is not a popularity contest.

harry-er than them all said...

the thing about personality is that "when you see it you know it. "

my best dates have been ones that we planned on the go with the girls input. or better yet, the girl planned it.

Diet Dr. Pepper said...

Firstly, just wanted to say that I'm glad to see a new post. I like reading what you have to say.

Secondly, the right guy at the right time. The right guy will appreciate your personality, smarts, and values.

Ariella said...

There's a bit of gender issue here as I observed on http://kallahmagazine.blogspot.com/2009/07/nice-and-not-quiet.html. Girls are expected to be sociable and outgoing but also not to put themselves forward. Boys are given more latitude. That's why studies show that boys get called on more than girls in coed classes and get to speak up more. {Score a point for separate classes aside from religious concerns.) Criticism, in general, though is not welcome.