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Why the ‘talking phase’ isn’t always the best relationship strategy

Something pretty extraordinary happened to me this week everyone. I was asked out on a date. And no the guy was not above the age of 40. The crazy thing is, he came to my door and just asked me, something quite rare from a young adult in this generation.
So this guy, we will call him Colin, has lived down the hall for me all year. It’s also important to tell you that he is British, that’ll be important later in the story. We’ve talked a couple times in passing, and he’s even come to my dorm to ask for fashion advice (As if that wasn’t a dead giveaway). Since we hadn’t talked in a while, I was a little surprised when he woke me up from my nap and knocked on my door today.
He sounded nervous and was stuttering some of his sentences. He asked me about how life was, and a bunch of other small talk then told me he had a serious question to ask me so I invited him in.
He asked me if I would and I quote, “go get coffee or something” with him. My initial reaction is that I thought this was weird and unexpected and that he was kind of creepy for asking me out even though I could count the number of times we’d talked on one hand.
Then it hit me.
I shouldn’t be weirded out; he’s British! They probably do things the old fashioned way across the pond! Then I thought about what I meant by “old fashioned way.”
Millennials go about dating and asking people out in a whole different way than our parent’s generation. Instead of the traditional “swooning phase” where boy meets girl, boy and girl share long sweet stares across cafeteria and then eventually boy works up nerve to ask girl out, we like to take a little bit…longer to get to know each other. Now, it’s like people want to exchange their life story and more, way before even they go on a first date. We call this the “talking phase.” The talking phase can last anywhere from a couple weeks to 10 months and consists entirely of, get ready, texting. That’s right folks, though it has coined the name “talking” there is actually no physical presence needed.
That’s why when Colin decided to skip the talking phase, I was caught a little bit off guard. I was in uncharted territory and didn’t know what to do. I felt like Dorothy looking for Oz and trust me, I definitely was not in Kansas anymore.
The thing is that I’ve always seen myself as the hopeless romantic who’s seen too many romantic comedies but the fact that I was initially creeped out by someone who bothered to work up the nerve to ask me out face to face makes me think I’ve been too susceptible to societal pressures. This honestly has served as a wakeup call to me. We hide behind our phones so that we can skip the awkward pauses that always happen in initial conversations. The thing is you also miss out on the emotional connection you may or may not feel by being physically around a person. An emotional connection even a heart eyed or blushing emoji face can’t make up for.
So the lesson here is maybe there IS one way I wish that I were more like my parents. There is something gutsy about asking someone out in person and even if they turn you down, odds are they’ll respect you a little bit more for it. Or you’ll be like me and get freaked out. But seriously, I wish in the future more people will skip the talking phase and decide to get to know one another in person. Remember that it’s easy to hide behind a screen and putting yourself out there can sometimes really work out in the long run!

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