What does “Dating” even mean in Twenty Fifteen?
In today’s day world, the word “dating” has become a term that has quite a loose meaning. It can either imply that your are exclusive or simply getting to know someone or getting know multiple people
“Whoever tells a lie is not pure of heart, and such a person can not cook a clean soup.” ”
— Ludwig van Beethoven
Now let’s take a moment to actually look at the dictionary meaning of “Dating” …Date- go out with (someone in whom one is romantically or sexually interested in). Which basically states to go out with someone who you have an interest in but this does not imply any form of exclusivity. Today we have added that clause to the term dependent on how it conveniences the situation. And if you look at the urban dictionary, which I still can’t believe is a pretty official thing, the term dating means of a couple, to be in the early stages of a relationship where they go out on dates to find out what each other is like, as a prelude to actually being a fully-fledged couple. Which implies a sense of exclusivity.
Generally speaking, people lean towards one or the other but now we have entered an era where we no longer can just stick to the term’s actual basic meaning we need to add sub-categories, “exclusively dating” “just dating” “we are in a relationship dating” “we are just messing around dating” “prelude to actually being an official couple dating.” We also have a percentage of people who just don’t believe in dating. This loosely defined term has caused some serious, confusion, damage and just absolute miscommunication amongst us who are seeking.
And for those who don’t believe in dating, technically speaking those first few meet-ups over coffee technically are dates which means you were at some point dating…I’m just saying technically speaking.
“We live such fast past city lives that keeping something or someone stuck in limbo will eventually slow you down…”
So how did we get to this point? Where does the rule of thumb lay on this?
Let’s look at a very common scenario, two people meet they each have an initial mutual interest. One of them then verbally express interest in continuing to get to know one another and the other person agrees. And so they continue to meet-up, enjoy each others company. Then one day you come to find out…possibly on Facebook and/or Instagram… that the other person is also “dating” other people. You confront them and they say in reply “well, I thought we were just dating.” The other person then feels cheated, cheated out of a fair chance, cheated from not being given undivided attention. While the other person may either consciously or unconsciously be thinking, there is someone better…possibly someone better.
The idea of possibly finding someone better is a common dilemma that even I am guilty of, it’s scary how automatic this thought comes. We meet someone who we have some level of interest in but believe that we can find someone who we can have a deeper, better connection with until shown otherwise… Guilty until proven innocent.
Back to the example, so now we have this person who feels cheated out of a fair chance and someone who believes there is something better which, in other words, is #FOMO fear of missing out. This basically creates a lose, lose situation for both parties because ultimately that person who feels cheated will eventually stop taking the risk in putting themselves out there and the person with #FOMO Good Luck! because you’ll wake up one day and wonder why you are still single #ImJustSayin. In words of Amy Winehouse, “Love is a losing game.”
Why not just be honest from the beginning? Why not just establish the terms of exclusivity from the beginning? Why not just lay it all up front?
Many of us crave this old style of where it just a mutual understanding, a common knowledge. We have yet to adapted to how we need to approach dating today. Some may find it too much to handle to just “lay it all up front” or we feel that it will just be a “turn off” to the other person if you just say “Hey, I like you, can we exclusively get to know one another?” In my opinion that whole saying way too much too early is us running from A. our fear of rejection and B. projection of our own insecurity/doubt in this possibility. FYI…You are not saying let’s go to “Town Hall and get married”. And of course, some of us just want to live this “secret life.” which fine, you feel, how you feel and you live how you want live. But ultimately someone is paying some sort of price for this other than you and yes you are also paying the price too.
So what is one to do you ask?
In today’s dating world, it has become essential to state as much as you can upfront. This is not only for the person who want to express interest and exclusivity, but those who define dating in a more loose way. Stop beating around the bush and wasting time and let that person make the decision for themselves as to whether or not it’s a condition they want to be a part of. So, if you are only about getting to know one person at a time and don’t believe dating more than one person that’s fine and If you are one who dates multiple people at once that”s fine too just say so!…for me personally dating another man would be me trying to fit another outfit into an already overstuffed suitcase.
Yes, I know some of us fear to expose our own self, but I truly believe the more direct you are on how you define dating the better chance you have of dating someone who has similar if not the same exact views.
We live such fast past city lives that keeping something or someone stuck in limbo will eventually slow you down if it hasn’t already. We now live in an era in which everyone has become comfortable with leaving their options open but want monogamy at the same time. In a city which has everything in it, monogamy has become too much to ask for. And many of us go so far out on the limb we don’t even realize that we are standing there alone.