Thursday, August 12, 2010


It seems as though everything we do within a society is governed by rules of some sort. Whether they are imposed by a government party, an income source or our own families we, as individuals, must abide by them in order to survive within these types of environments.

Now in everyday life we also make demands upon ourselves in the same kind of sense. They may not be “laws” or “enforceable rules” by an outside party per say, but nevertheless they govern us by our own social and moral standards. These etiquettes, as they are sometimes referred to, can differ from person to person.

Etiquettes can be found virtually anywhere you look. There are dining etiquettes, attire etiquettes and yes even dating etiquettes. Although, many individuals if asked, would tell you that they may not be as well versed in the “dating rules” as they would be say with dining and fashion.

Now let’s stop and think about this for a second, shall we. What would some of these “rules” or etiquettes be when it comes to dating? Are they practiced and held in high regard? Do they differ between genders and situations? Could you name them if asked? Well according to men and women in today’s society they can be absolute deal breakers when it comes to dating or finding the “right mate” for you.

So let us sample of few of these so-called etiquettes for conversational purposes. One of the most talked about etiquette I have found that is in constant discussion today would have to be the way individuals are meeting. Some still hold true to the good old fashioned ways of meeting their potential dates: bars and social parties, while others have found a new way of breaking the ice: internet and speed dating arenas. Some individuals find it “socially unacceptable” to try the newer ways available to find a mate while others think it’s more convenient. Either way there are pros and cons to both methods, as there are to most things in life in general. With respect to the bar scene, many say the same things. You will never find your true soul mate or at least someone you can become potentially serious with in a Bar. The Bar or “the meat market” as it is widely referred to these days, is a place you go to when you are in need of a quick fix or the aka “one night stand”. And whether this is true or not 5 out of 10 people would gladly take their chances in this type of environment verses speed dating a bunch of strangers you barley know have seen, or exchanged two e-mails with. Now the pro to online dating is that the rate of success nowadays proves to be much higher of a possible long term commitment with those individuals who have found their mate this way, than those who meet in a bar or club social scene. The sad part of it all is that the statistics would in all probability be even higher still, if more people would freely admit to having met one another this way; rather than being too embarrassed to divulge such information to friends and family. My view here is simply this: It is hard enough to find someone you love in this world, much less one who is truly compatible in all aspects or areas of your life as it is – so why on earth downplay how one’s soul mate has come to find it’s other half? Does it truly matter? The answer is no! At least it is for me. But then again, I am not really one to be a social show dog or follow in the status quo lines of society either.

The Etiquettes to follow seem to fall into the “Venus verses mars” syndrome. Is one influence more dominant over the other? Let’s find out!

High on the dating scene list would have to be this: When going out on your first date who should pay, the male or female? As a result of some survey studies, most men would agree that on the first initial date, the gentlemanly thing to do is to pay, while others are fine with going “Dutch” (parties putting in equal shares). Now although opinions differed slightly on etiquette of the first or second date, all men agreed that for the dates to follow the lady should at least make an attempt to grab for their wallets to illustrate a “gesture of payment” in some manner or regard. This portrays a level of respect to their male counterparts that they are not just here, in their company, for a free meal. If the gesture on the lady’s part is not made, well then there is little or no hope for a next date. Now the ladies are all over the raider on this one. Some would agree with the men 100% while others would disagree in the same ideal percentage. I think it all stems down to a matter of respect and morals personally, but there is no true written rule in regards to this etiquette. I think generally it should be about what makes each individual comfortable as apposed to what the woman does verses the man. It’s more than that. Women have come such a long way in realms of equality and individualism of rights and yet when it comes to dating many of them revert back to old day mentalities and idealistics.

Now let’s back up for a second and visit etiquettes that date further back than the “first date”. How do people feel about “the first phone call”? Who should approach whom regarding a date? Once again surveys illustrated different answers with relation to gender. Some men would love a woman to take charge, pick up a the phone and make a date with them, while others would rather keep things old fashioned and make the first move themselves. Others went on to state that they find that women who approach men in bars are too pushy and come across as easy and desperate.

When it comes to dating etiquette one has to wonder, are these really valid rules of thumb to follow or is it all a bunch of sexism at it’s finest. I mean think about it for a moment. Does it not sound crazy? There are so many rules to follow to find someone to love. The silly thing is that we are all playing the same game but there are different rules for each player trying to cross the finish line. Men have a set and well the women seem to have their own. At this rate, how can anybody win? Have you ever played a game, any game where someone said, “ok ladies here is your rule book and fellas, here is yours” Would you not look at the score keeper and think “is this person crazy?” Or perhaps we are looking at it all wrong. How can anyone win a game if they don’t know how to play? Or worse, how can you possibly ever think of attaining the prize of the game when you keep hearing or having to study changes to the rulebook every other minute? The answer? Simple, don’t play the game. If it truly were a game complete with rules to follow it should only be: To (1) Always be kind and treat others with the same dignity and respect that you demand for yourself at all times. (2) To always be yourself because no matter what, because let’s face it, no one likes a phony.

Most of you are reading this thinking “what the hell!! What does she mean, don’t play the game? Don’t date? Is that what she’s saying?” No, that is not it at all. Date as you will just do not make it a game. It’s not a game, and the minute one treats it like one, all the rules in the world will not matter or help you at all because you’ve already lost. The biggest mistake that anyone could ever make is to treat dating, and people for that matter, as a game. We as individuals are all unique and marvelous creatures. We are all different in our own way. We look at life differently, we appreciate things differently, we laugh and enjoy certain things in their own ways and most importantly we seek, and love differently too. What we must all try to understand is simply this: make your own rules to your own life. Do what feels right for you. What may work for someone else will not always necessarily work for you. Just be yourself and get out there and have a blast. The most important thing to remember is that no matter what you do you may not always find love behind every dating door. Sometimes it doesn’t matter whether or not you pay for one date or all the dates. Sometimes it won’t make a difference if you call the individual the same night they gave you their number or use the “3 day rule” and wait not to seem too desperate. Sometimes it really doesn’t matter if you brought the lady a flower on your first date…or were too nervous to think of it at all. Some day, despite all you do or don’t do, you will find the one you seek because it is your time. It’s that simple. All the rules in the world will not matter, but rather the one important thing will be evident. That no matter how crazy the dating travels were it was worth the ride and you are truly a better, richer individual for having gone along with the adventure.

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