Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Extending reach

I had lunch with Hula the other day. She asked me how the dating is going. I told her about my recent, dead-end dates and fruitless e-mail exchanges. While she racked her brains for suggestions about how to improve my interactions, she mentioned something that I think might have been part of the problem with my dates last week.

It's probably part of my personality. I'm a very fact-based person and probably ask question in that manner. To engage people in conversation, I need to state questions in a form that generates an opportunity for the other person to share their opinion, not just spew information. For example, rather than just discuss cars, I could ask his opinon on the attitude of American versus Japanese carmakers towards innovation and who will survive. The next skill I need to develop is how to direct those questions into answers that will tell me something about the guy's values, beliefs, and how he thinks. That's what will help both of us determine whether we're compatible.

It's a challenge for me because it's not obvious how to do this. This would be good for me to learn how to do in many social situations, not just dating. I think part of the problem is that I've built up this notion in my head that questions that probe more might be perceived as nosy or too personal.


Lately, I have received some requests for contact from guys who live outside of the state. I know I should keep an open mind, but it's just so far... .

It's one thing to decided to date someone who you've previously known through friends. At least you have a sense of them. But to start communicating with someone who is hundreds of miles away and whom you know nothing about makes me uncomfortable. Perhaps I'm just too jaded, but the back of my mind questions whether these guys are living double lives. How do I know that they're really who they say they are? How would I know if they're married or have girlfriends?

If they seem interesting and look decent, I'd probably reply. I'm just not thrilled at the idea of trying to get to know someone remotely. I considered it once but quickly realized that I wasn't comfortable with it.

1 comment:

zerodoll said...

i personally would not ever start a long-distance romance with someone in another state. i wanted someone nearby, that i could see every day if i wanted to. i was willing to expand my admittedly small radius if it wasn't letting me meet people, but face-to-face interaction counts for sooooo much.