Ladies, we have a problem. It’s not news that the dating scene has changed in a big way and that modern romance is more of a disaster than ever before. With the rise of online dating, commitment phobias and random hook-ups becoming the predominant way of making connections, it’s time that we start leading the way in making some changes. We have the power to steer things back in the right direction if we start calling men out for these common and problematic behaviors:
- Ghosting. When did we become OK with the fact that a guy can just ignore your very existence as a means of cutting things off? We accept this even though it totally destroys our own self esteem. It’s nice to think that we can be a culture that’s super casual and doesn’t give a crap, but deep down, we actually do. Ask for an ending. Ask for clarification. It’s completely OK to say, “I was having a great time getting to know you, but if you don’t feel the same, please let me know so I’m not left hanging. We’re supposed to be grown-ups.
- Dating multiple women and expecting us to be OK with it. Life isn’t an episode of The Bachelor. You aren’t on a game show being selected by a panel of judges. You’re a human being who deserves a fair chance, and if the guy you’re into isn’t into giving you that respect, walk away and leave the crappy long stem rose behind.
- Late night texting and calling. A lot of women think it’s totally cool when the new guy they’re dating starts calling them after 10 pm to get together on short notice without making any real effort to making a thoughtful plan or asking for their time in advance. We’re trying to be so “go with the flow” that we’re actually sacrificing our own self-worth. Stop it. Don’t pick up. Tell him you’re happy to see him so long as he makes plans in advance. You’re worth more than that.
- Being too busy to respond or plan a date. Everyone is busy, but let’s be real — no one is that busy that they can’t spare 30 seconds to send you a response to your text or make time in their lives to plan when they can see you next. At the very least, you should be kept in the loop. Still, more and more I hear women say, “I understand — he’s just busy.” This is absurd. Everyone makes time for what they want. Stop excusing people from not giving you the time you want with this sad justification.
- The “Netflix and chill” BS. This is not a date. This is what you do with someone you’re totally exclusive with or have been together with for months. If you’ve been dating a week and are already chilling in sweatpants together, then congratulations, you’ve just killed the romance. Remember that you have the power to set the standard on what you want out of a relationship early on, and if what you want is thoughtful and treasured memories for a lifetime, then you have to put the onesie parties on hold until you build that romance.
- Keeping options open when you’ve got something good going. If you’re having a great time with someone, why would you look elsewhere? Why is it OK for the guy to continue using Tinder and chatting up new potential interests if you’re certain you want to continue exploring just him? Again, you’re not on The Bachelor. If you’re sure of him, and he’s still unsure, then the only thing you should be sure of is not paying him any further attention until he can focus on one woman at a time.
- Accepting less than you deserve. You know what you want, so stop accepting less and start calling the things out that upset you, or walk away from the things that you don’t like. We have a choice about whether we want to allow these crappy behaviors to continue or whether we want to stand up to them and let it be known that they’re unacceptable. Start asking for what you want and how you wish to be treated. It’s time that we took back the modern dating world.