We’re not keen on blind dates so why are we writing about this subject at all? The answers: one, because it doesn’t take rocket science to know what it means going to go on a blind date; two, many people actually find it fun and more exciting; three, there is enough documented experience that dictates the need for open-mindedness and not to look at it with high and mighty expectations.
The fourth reason: your family, friends and colleagues are wondering what you’re doing dragging your feet and not getting hooked yet. They’re starting to think, “is something so very wrong with her” or “is he such a loser that he can’t relate to anyone?”
Some of us have reluctantly agreed to go on blind dates in the past just to please our well-meaning friends. They sell you on the subject - “this just one blind date, he’s gorgeous, you’ll thank me for matching you up, and blind-dating is as easy as 1-2-3!”
Okay. Why do a lot of people think blind-dating is as easy as they say it is?
Pros of Going on a Blind Date:
What are some of the pros that people who enjoy blind dates cite?
Element of surprise
This is a no-brainer. People like blind dates because they’re kept guessing up to the umpteenth hour what kind of hair, color of eyes and hair, lips, and degree of chivalry the blind date has. Instead of going out with someone familiar and close to home, you’d much rather go out and spend the night with the perfect stranger – mysterious, alluring and uncommon.
A few days before the blind date, you catch yourself wondering and daydreaming that “this is it, the point of no return.” You ask yourself if you’re finally going to find your true life partner.
No ID check
Who wants to date someone who knows everything about you - your warts, quirks and what you eat for breakfast ? Oh no, you don’t want anyone too close for comfort. The truth is on a blind date you can be yourself 100% without having to pretend or prove anything. It’s the principle of WYSIWYG all over again. Another benefit is you don’t get to be the topic of conversation on campus or in the office’s water cooler on Monday.
If you date a friend in school or someone at the office and find that you have nothing in common after all, it would be embarrassing to say that there won’t be a second date. A feeling of guilt overcomes you every time you cross paths. On the other hand, going on a blind date means you can reject the person on the basis of the “no attraction there” policy and walk away without the slightest feeling of guilt or remorse.
When you’re dating someone you know in school or at work, the conversation tends to gravitate around the things that you have in common: homework and professors if you’re both in school, projects and bosses if you work in the same office. Of course, these are not the only things you talk about – you can talk about your families, hobbies, your favorite books and films and your opinions on the environment and the super bug. On a blind date, however, the slate is clean. It’s like having a brand new chalkboard on which you can write your thoughts. In other words, you’re starting from scratch because you don’t know each other at all. The “getting to know you” process is much more exciting, leading the two of you to a sparkling conversation that can spark “other” things.
Cons of Going on a Blind Date
Despite the advantages of going on a blind date, there are, unfortunately, disadvantages as well. Let’s look at those –
You’ve just met 10 minutes ago and you get this sinking feeling that the rest of the evening is going to be one irreparable disaster. When you introduced each other, a little voice inside you said “oh oh, wrong date.” Should you be polite and bear and grin it, or call it off prematurely?
Trying to put your best foot forward is a difficult juggling act and it can put a bit of stress on the blind date. You’re feeling inadequate because you’re not used to the dating scene and it’s a Herculean effort making small talk. There’s also the chance that your blind date was endowed with a stiff upper lip. What to say?
Stalkers by the dozen
We hate to sound like a doomsayer but with all that we read in the media today, there are harmless stalkers and there are those full of malicious intent. It’s a terrible feeling to experience someone who suddenly latches on to you and calls you with lewd suggestions at odd hours of the morning. One such experience is sufficient to make you vow, “never a blind date again.”
Don’t Build Expectations
Even if the friend who set you up on a blind date assures you that this is the perfect match, take that with a grain of salt. You’re within your rights to ask friends who play cupid how well they know this special somebody. When it comes to the matching game, they all sound like a dating service online: “who knows, this could be the ONE” or else “you’ll never find anyone like him so grab him before somebody does.”
When a friend says, for example, that your blind date drives the latest BMW, don’t automatically think “loaded.” That BMW probably is a loan from a family member or friend, or it could be that he’s neck-deep in debt and is a careless spender.
Cars, fancy schools and smart garb don’t make a blind date a great catch. These are all whistles and bells that adorn a person, you have to know if he’s got a soul to match yours. That’s key.
Also, so as not to be disappointed, don’t start daydreaming about a chivalrous knight in shining armor. Rmind yourself that many men are just not raised to be real gentlemen. To expect that he’ll hold doors for you and pay for everything means you haven’t spent enough time in the dating scene. While there are some men who will foot the bill, there are the “enlightened” ones who’ll ask you to split the bill 50-50 (even if they drank more wine that you did, by the way).
Perhaps you’re a bit tired of the dating game and you’re hoping this one blind date will be your last because he or she will turn out to be the perfect mate. The sad reality is that you may think that on your first and second dates, but you could change your mind when you get to know your blind date more intimately, as in...six months later, he makes your stomach turn.
All we’re saying is: don’t build a powerhouse of expectations. Don’t set yourself up for another major frustration because you could be stung badly. When the bee stings, you never want to socialize anymore and make that connection with another human being. So, tone down those expectations and don’t think a blind date will be THE manna from heaven. Keep an open mind and simply enjoy yourself.
If there’s a connect, well and good; if not, there are as many blind dates as there are fish in the deep blue sea.