Group dating for adults: just say no

20 Nov

It’s a hoary anecdote that Singapore is unique for its state-sponsored and regulated dating.  Foreigners make this situation a sniggering joke, while locals just shrug and accept it as a necessary evil, what with young people being too busy and shy to meet new people. Some locals are even able to bear with the stigma and *gasp* actually sign up for such programmes.

The intent of this article is not to make jokes about this, or to argue the right or wrong about it. I have signed up for some programmes myself. And I encourage my friends to do the same.

But there is a caveat.

Use these programmes only to meet new people. But if you meet someone interesting, for goodness’ sake, don’t organise a group date just in order to meet the girl you fancy.

Don’t make this a teenage drama. When I was young, I volunteered to organise class reunions for my primary school class. Just so that I can see and talk to my childhood class. No, I didn’t get the girl in the end. No, it’s not because of that ghastly barbeque accident.

This is why such group dates are bad ideas: In a group, everyone has to talk to everyone else. You have to move around and talk to everyone. This is not about social pressure and ‘keeping up with the extroverts.’ It’s definitely not about giving the plain girls and guys a ‘fair opportunity’ to talk. This is simply good manners. Talking only to girls whom you’re attracted to, and ignoring those whom you’re not, is rude. Pure and simple.

So. You’re in a social situation where paying exclusive attention to the girl you’re attracted to is wrong. See the problem?

The solution to this situation, is to take such group activities for what they are: a chance to meet new people. People whom you won’t have an opportunity to run into in your normal course of life. If you’re not meeting enough new, interesting people on a regular basis, go sign up for these events.

But if you do meet someone with potential, for goodness sake don’t suggest that the group meet up again. Instead, exchange numbers with her. Meet for coffee. Talk to her face to face. Let her know you’re interested. By asking a whole mass of people to meet up, you leave her guessing if you’re interested in her or some other girl in the group. And you leave room for suspicions that you have so little social life, you have to ask mere acquaintances to join you for drinking—an activity people usually do with, you know, friends.

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One Response to “Group dating for adults: just say no”

  1. Ypf7717 November 30, 2010 at 1:31 pm #

    I can’t understand what do guys have to lose by asking the girls they are interested in out for a coffee. 2 hours? 10 bucks? The time and money spent is not wasted. 2 people get to know each other better. If it doesn’t work out, just move on.

    The group date IS a waste of time and money. Time and money spent doing group date thing. Did not impress anybody. Did not show interest to anybody. That surely cost more than 2 hrs and 10 bucks.

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