Is it normal for the guy to do all of the work?

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lems2 asks:

Is it normal for the guy to do all of the work? 

Girls never text me unless I text them first. All of the dates I’ve been on happened because I set them up. Is this normal? Are these women just using me for free meals or what?


Demetrius says:

What have I said about absolutes in dating? Remind me, because I always seem to forget. Oh right, it’s that there are rarely any absolutes in dating. Sorry, I’m getting forgetful in my old age.

To answer your questions:

  • Is it normal for the guy to do all of the work? NO
  • Are these women just using you for free meals or what? Maybe

Sadly, there exists no Lorax for women, so no one can speak for all women. With that said, I think it’s fair to say that all though I can’t speak for all women, I can say with 100% certainty that it’s not normal for a guy to do all of the work, nor do I think that every woman you date is in it for free meals.

Chances are good that the women that you are dating are at best, kind of into you, but not necessarily head over heels for you. The reason that I guess this is because no matter how socially inept a person is, if they are interested in you, eventually they’ll plan a date with you. The fact that your complaint seems to be centered around “girls” instead of “a girl” leads me to believe that you’re dating a lot of women. If that’s the case, odds are good that none of them have liked you enough to want to make things monogamous, so that’s why you’re putting in all the work. If a girl is interested in seeing you seriously, she’ll send a text and ask you out. If she feels sort of “meh” about a date with you, she’ll go on a date with you if you ask her, but she isn’t going to put much effort into planning things with you. It’s not normal for guys, or anyone, to do all the work if the person they are dating is interested in them, but it is normal for someone to put in all the effort if the people they date aren’t all that into them. What is “normal” is the expectation that the guy will make the first move. If you’re online dating, generally women expect you to send the first message. If you’re meeting someone in public, the expectation is generally on the guy to initiate the conversation. There are always exceptions, but for the most part, the initial contact requirement is usually on the guy. Beyond that, a lack of initiation is usually a sign that the person isn’t that interested in you.

As to whether or not the women you date are using you for a free meal, again, I’m not the Lorax for Women or anything but I’m guessing that most people don’t date you for free food. However, it’s possible (but not probable) that at least one person has gone on a date with you for a free meal. I’m not saying that all women would go on a date with you for a free meal, but I’m sure at least one girl has agreed to go on a date with you and thought to herself “Screw it I’m not into him, but free drinks and dinner”. It sounds like your main issue here is the cost of dating and the return on investment on that cost. It’s a perfectly natural feeling to have, especially when you consider that the average date costs a pretty significant amount. The thing is, you’ll never know for sure if someone is trying to take advantage of you on a date, so I’d suggest dating differently. For starters, avoid restaurants on first dates. One rule of mine is to never, ever, do dinner on a first date. It has less to do with the cost of a date so much as the cost of my time. What if I sit down to my date and we don’t really click? Now I’m stuck at a dinner table with someone for 2-3 courses and I wouldn’t even want to get more than one drink with them. Doing a date that isn’t a 1 to 2 hour commitment means that you spend less money (your primary concern) and you’re not committed to a bad date for a set amount of time. In addition to avoid dinner dates on the first date, you might want to make clear that you prefer a certain type of spending pattern when you date someone. If the expectation is that you will pay for the first date (not my rule, but it’s a very common expectation), maybe you should suggest that she pay for part of or all of the second date. Yes, you’ll discourage a lot of women from dating you, but if it’s an issue where you feel taken advantage of, wouldn’t you rather have money in your pocket and lose out on a 2nd date versus paying for the 1st, 2nd, or 3rd date?

Ultimately, I think that you’re letting your mindset screw up your odds of meeting someone. If you go into dating with a mindset that you’re starting off in a negative position (i.e. I do all the work and get taken advantage of) you’ll either continue to date people who help fulfill your mindset, or you discourage people who aren’t like that from dating you. You can’t read the minds of the people you date, but you can take the clues they give you and make educated decisions. If you’re putting in all the work after 2 or more dates, it’s time to either move on, or tell them to change their behavior. If you’re feeling like your wallet is being taken for a ride, go on cheaper dates and avoid dinner dates.

You could be wrong, and it could all be in your head, but instead of focusing on what other daters do that dissatisfies you, focus on what you can do to make your dating life much happier.

Good Luck Out There.

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