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Wednesday, April 24, 2013

College dating advice has a grain of truth

I wish I had found my future husband while I was still in college.  I might have had some boys interested in me, but the majority didn't make it very clear.  See, I wasn't a hookup kind of girl.  I went to church.  I tried to hang out with nice boys.  But in terms of dating, either nothing felt right that did happen or nothing happened.

My first college dating experience was very bad.  The guy was 25, I was 18.  He was a late starter or late finisher and had a pattern of dating freshman girls.  I didn't know.  I met him through a college fellowship group and it was downhill from there.  Next thing I knew some girl was talking about going out with him even though she had a boyfriend and saying how sophisticated he was.  He also went out with two of my friends.  It taught me that not all Christians are good.

I met a guy through church.  He was 36 and I was 18.  He was nice enough and everything, but 18 years older was too much older ofr me.  He was already thinking about marriage and the rumor was that he "just wants to get married" and would essentially "marry anyone."  It was too much too soon and his eagerness was overwhelming.  I had just been in a bad situation and needed time to get over it.

I joined ROTC and met a few guys through that, but some went about things in a way that didn't speak to me.  One guy got my phone number off of my application.  If he'd asked me directly for my number and permission to call he might have had it, but he went about it in a way that I found offensive.

Another guy I spent some time hanging out with in ROTC one day asked me when we were going to start dating.  I turned him down because church was telling me that Catholics weren't true Christians.  This part was mistaken.  However, becoming reacquainted with him later in life, he described how often he's cheated on his wife.  He wanted to make me his side dish and I turned him down again.  This was depressing.  Post-college dating is hard, but I'm certainly not going to settle for an affair.

There was a guy who I really liked but I didn't know he liked me.  He made me banana bread and invited me over to hang out in the summer.  I realized later that he probably had one of his friends over because they were trying to figure out through friendship if I was wife material.  I had no clue.  I tried to play tennis with him even though I was awful.  He never actually asked me out probably because I never expressed interest in being a missionary.  The girl he actually went out with said she wanted to do missions.  The woman he married went with him to a Muslim country.  Yes, I was Christian, but I'm not exactly a spiritual giant, so I lost out.  I really liked him but I just didn't get what he wanted.  I think he liked me, but I'll never be completely sure.  The one thing I am sure of is that I would have been an awful missionary.

Another guy friend of mine hung out with me to the point that I finally had to tell him I didn't want to keep going out with him as friends.  He had a girlfriend and even though it was fun, people were going to talk and it might make it difficult for me to find someone for myself.  It was for the best, but it was very emotional to send him packing as he was a dear friend.

When I finally had a boyfriend, it was difficult because he wasn't a Christian.  And then I started going out with a friend of his after we broke up.  But he was moving far away and didn't want to have long distance relationship because he went through that when he went to college.  She waited only 3 weeks before she started seeing someone else without officially breaking up with him.  When he moved north and that was then end of us - his choice not mine.  I would have been faithful.  In fact I didn't even have a date for almost a year.  Another friend Rob also wanted to go out with me, but I went for Jim.  Rob might have been a better choice.  Hindsight is 20/20.

I had a huge crush on a guy who I spent a great deal of time with in college.  We sang together in quite a few productions and choirs.  Then he became angry with me and misbehaved when I invited him to stay at my parent's place and have lunch with my family, catching a ride with him for the visit.  He thought I was presenting him as husband material.  I did have a crush on him, but I didn't think it was a big deal because they had always known all of my friends and always met my dates in high school before we actually went out.  I guess I had a hard time understanding that most people conduct their dating lives in secret and aren't that open with their parents.  We had a falling out after that.  Incidentally, my parents couldn't stand him and told me so immediately.  Years later I found out that he was/is gay.  He still acted like he hated me when we ran into each other.  I can't imagine what I actually did that was wrong.

There was a guy who I really liked, but he kept suggesting another guy to me.  But that guy never came out and said he liked me.  He might have really really liked me, but I couldn't tell.  We spent time together, but he never liked to participate in witty repartee, so when I teased him it fell flat.  Maybe he thought I was cute, but if he had actually said something to me, things might have turned out differently.  I hate to be all maudlin, but he died of cancer 10 years after college.  I could have been his widow.

With my college roommates we invited some guy friends over who we liked but there was zero chemistry and they were like brothers to us.  I spend time with these guys post college, but nothing ever happened.  I didn't feel it and I guess they didn't either.  It was nice to have brotherly men who treated me like a sister.  I had guy friends who took me to do things like see rated G Disney movies. I guess they got some amusement out of me singing the soundtracks but I was very clearly little sister and not girlfriend material.  And I certainly wasn't wife material since I wasn't the missionary type.

I got engaged to a guy I met while working on my teaching credential.  It lasted a year.  We weren't suited to each other.  He told the same jokes all the time.  He was rather unkind about my wish to wait until we got married.  When we stayed at his aunt's house he was angry with me because I asked to stay in a separate bedroom.  He was also quite flirtatious with other women.  When I mentioned it to him, he said I was "just jealous."  I wasn't.  He started dating one of these women and then married her.  But leopards don't change their spots.  I heard from his students that he tells the same jokes all the time and chases after the young teachers.  Good riddance.

While I'm happy with the man I am with now, I can't help but wonder why I could have met him sooner or why I couldn't have met someone suitable sooner and why it couldn't have clicked sooner.  If there are guys reading these, it's time to speak up if you like a girl.  She probably has no clue that you like her and she might give you a chance.  I think many girls do want to meet a man early.  But it just doesn't seem to work out very well for us all the time.  And we certainly want a man who encourages us to follow our dreams and share these dreams together.

College dating is hard for girls like me, but post-college dating is even harder.  At no other time in life will people be able to hang out and "get to know each other" for endless hours to "talk" about "life" or whatever.  Maybe if I had been bolder about liking boys I might have had a boyfriend sooner.  The only time it was easy was when I went to coffee with my tutor and asked him if he wanted to be my boyfriend.  It didn't last, but hey, I finally had a boyfriend. 

Comments all agree that making friends and meeting people as adults is much more difficult than it is in college.  The man I am with now had great difficulty meeting someone, too.  He wasn't shy with girls, but when you are a nice guy you go to work and go to martial arts classes or maybe try online dating.  And in martial arts, like your engineering job, you mostly meet other dudes.  Girls often take on girly jobs like teaching or fashion.  Just try meeting a man among the teachers - though the chances are better teaching high school.  The only man you'll meet in the fashion industry is a gay bestie.

Here is the article which could be good advice for so many, but harder to follow than anyone thinks.

Susan Patton Told the Truth: Meet the feminist pioneer today's feminists hate.

Thanks for reading! Please leave a comment! Commenting is now open to everyone! (Write to me for advice! SavvySingleChristian@yahoo.com)


Clarence Lumpy Rutherford said...

This is pure gold.
Pertinent and wonderful advice that any single man should here.

Particularly those never-been-in-a-relationship guys in their late 20s, 30s & 40s who seem timid or "scared" of approaching women.

Guys, if you see a gal who you could see a future with, express some interest EARLY ON & take some initiative. The time to act is NOW.

That's what I had to do in my late 20s if I didn't want to remain alone for another decade.

I finally awoke and realized I couldn't only rely on God to send me a spouse.

It's not wrong for a Christian man to speak-up & act a bit more forward. If you don't, some other guy will, the wrong type of guy who won't care so much about her Christian morality, which gives Christian women many regrets.
The internet is full of those stories of regrets.

I read some of them and now kind of suspect some of those "good Christian women" passed me over and only had eyes for the "bad guys."

Because I was a shy and unconfident guy through most of my 20s, I didn't speak-up and therefore lost my place in line.

This part is appropo:
"...If there are guys reading these, it's time to speak up if you like a girl. She probably had no clue that you like her and she might give you a chance..."

Your comments on how much easier it is in college to meet members of the opposite sex are also spot-on.

Once you get into the land of the cubicles, you'll find many married people and it can be difficult meeting other singles.
Boy, is that a regret of mine, not trying harder in college, though I did try and like many other guys, flopped and found it difficult to get 2nd or 3rd dates or even first dates!!!

Good work. I wish I'd seen such advice when I was single in my 20s during the 1980s.

SavvyD said...

Thanks for reading. The only other thing I can think of is that there was a guy in one of my classes who asked me out but her had never really spoken to me, I barely knew him, and I felt uncomfortable. I felt bad turning him down, but I couldn't shake my feelings of discomfort and I would have had a bad time because of it.

Kevin Sanders said...

This post reminds me of my college years--I really lacked confidence with women back in those days (guess I still hadn't gotten over high school).

And you make a very good point: meeting eligible, sane singles seems to get more difficult over time.

SavvyD said...

This is the only article which has beat out "Biblical Ways of Knowing She's The One" which is still my favorite article I ever wrote.

Joël Cuerrier said...

As a Catholic man, I was sort of offended you don't consider her christian. But that's fine, you're heretical to our side, so it all pan out just fine.

Anyway, some good tips there. I don't really seek out women no more, most of them are just too despicable human beings to talk to. I think our society is doomed and women are overwhelmingly to blame for the downfall of western civilization. So I let them keep destroying themselves, destroying us all, another culture will take over and we'll have a millennium of chaos, epidemics and wars.

Multiculturalism is the future, in that it will dwarf us all to be a minority in our own countries... and of course, you'll have been responsible for most of it. At this point, I'm so reactionary, I think the first mistake was giving woman the right to vote, it all went downhill from there.

I don't hate women, not at all, I just despise what they have become. Don't get me wrong, that doesn't make me bitter or anything, it's just the fatality, it's realist pessimism. Women won and they'll keep winning, but by doing so, they are just vanishing from the face of the earth. Basically, the whole world will be like Vermont. Lovely little Progressive place, but they have to shut down schools cause there's no one to attend them. Almost the whitest State in America, all women stopped having children, so they are FREE for a generation or two, then it's bye bye birdie. Who's the woman that's going to be left standing to fight for your cause?

SavvyD said...

Joel, if you'll note carefully I said church was telling me that Catholics weren't Christians. I don't agree with that anymore. The man I was engaged to was actually Catholic. Neither of them were the right man for me. I've known Catholics over time who I consider to be more devout and holy than the average protestant.

In terms of attitudes, you might want to try accepting the fact that society has changed and it wasn't all women's fault that society changed. If you want to blame the "nanny state" for some of our problems, look no further than the increase in lawyers who constantly work to limit liability forcing the legal system to work overtime and laws to be re-written.

The woman who is "on your side" is the one who you have a great friendship with as well as an attraction. Sometimes it takes years to find. There are men I had an OK time with, but it didn't turn into a relationship. The man in my life had long periods of being single because he was involved in guy-oriented activities and a guy-oriented job.

If you disdain women because you find them despicable and "hate what they've become", that attitude is keeping you from having a relationship. Your heart sounds very closed.

Thanks for reading.

Audrey Mackay said...

Such dating advice are needed for those singles.

Joseph Russo said...

Thanks for posting this article. I find it very interesting and informative. I can't wait to read lots of your posts dating blog