When I think how I’ve spent almost three years of my life airing my somewhat old-fashioned views about dating, gender roles and lifestyle choices on this blog, I’m quite surprised that I’m still alive. Especially, considering how vigilant the PC police are nowadays. Single ladies are reminded everyday about their ticking biological clocks. And regardless, we are all busy people who have a limited time on this earth. We cannot afford to waste time going on dates with people we know we are incompatible with from the outset. Sure, it’s good to be exposed to people with different world views to your own but that doesn’t necessarily need to happen in the dating space, if you ask me.
I’ve already voiced my views about how I think it’s not only OK, but 110% necessary, to be unapologetic about your dating deal breakers. But I understand that not everyone thinks like me. The world we live in is overly PC. It seems that sometimes that people are striving for some sort of ideal where we are all equal, things are always fair and nothing sets us apart from others and we all live happily ever after. But let’s face facts, that is not so and is unlikely to ever be the case. The world isn’t perfect, everyone is different. Some differences are out of our control and others are a result of choices that we’ve actively made.
Anyway, back to the point of the post. What irks me most is that although we are all well aware that the world isn’t just and people have differences of opinion, yet this obsession with being PC sometimes makes it very difficult for people to be open and honest about things that are deeply important to them and this in turn has the potential to do untold damage to others around them, especially in the realm of dating and relationships.
Let me give you a examples through couple of recent incidents which provided the inspiration for this post. We all know how superficial Tinder is. To my detriment, I rarely waste my time reading a person’s full profile unless it’s a actual match. As in life, most initial decisions about a person are based on the image they portray in those first few moments. But I’ve learnt the hard way that this is probably not the best way to go about things.
A Hunk On Wheels
So about the first encounter. I was chatting to some Tinder dude who seemed perfectly nice until one morning he questioned me about why I was awake at 5am. I told him that was happy hour at the gym to which he responded with a whole bunch of alternative places I could be instead. While rolling my eyes, I replied by saying : ‘I take it you aren’t into fitness and a healthy lifestyle ?’ (Remember it was 5am when I am really in no state for civilized conversation with anyone except maybe the treadmill!). Anyway, he ended up silencing me by firstly revealing he is actually confined to a wheelchair (awk!) and then referring to himself as ‘my hunk on wheels’ (cringe!). I did double check his Tinder pics and turns out you should never trust a profile which only includes headshots. #rookieerrror! After some deliberation, (un)helpful advice from my friends (someone told me to reiterate that being active is hugely important to me!) and even a quick google search (you can ask the internet pretty much anything these days) I decided the best course of action here was to remain silent. In any case, I would be branded a nasty able-ist person and would be spending the rest of forever burning in hell for having such a deal breaker.
Drug Dealers vs. God Botherers
The second encounter involved a rather dashing guy who became rather cryptic when questioned about his career. He disclosed only that he ‘worked with people’. My first guess was a drug dealer. The second, a priest. Lets just say he stood more of chance had he followed the former career path. He tried to back track somewhat by saying he was actually a pastor and not a priest. Unfortunately, there is no room for god in any of my relationships. Subtlety was never my forte so this little romance ended before it began with me telling him that ‘I’m not really into god.’. It was a real shame though as he had pretty nice biceps (probably from waving all those BIG MAN bibles around!). Sigh.
How Much Are We Obliged To Reveal from the Outset?
Hmmm…Yes people are horrible. The world is full of nasty ISTS ….racists, sexists, able-ists, age-ists … the list goes on. As much as I don’t condone these attitudes, I do believe everyone has the right to have them (although perhaps like in my case, it might be best to keep silent about these things at times). Whether its through choice or by circumstance, we are who we are and there are certain things we cannot/should not have to change about ourselves. That said, I also think we have a duty to open and honest about certain things from the get-go.
I don’t think either ‘the pastor’ or the ‘hunk on wheels’ were the most evil people in the world but they simply wasted my time. And while I found it much easier to be dismissive of the pastor (partly because religion just tends to annoy me and I get great joy our of antagonizing god-botherers), I think in both cases they could have revealed the truth much earlier on. The disability issue is sensitive but being open about it from the start would have just saved some awkwardness in the long-term. Imagine the poor chicks who don’t cotton onto the fact before a date – should they have to sit through the date out of sympathy or because the PC-police would likely accuse them of being able-ist? No! And ‘testing’ people’s character is never a good way to start a relationship.
Of course, nothing is ever black and white when it comes to human relationships. Sometimes deal breakers that are clear as day get overlooked because we are sucked in by a person’s charisma and good looks. And there are some cases where you don’t realise a deal breakers is a deal breaker till you’ve had some experience of it. Relationships are a learning curve. And I suppose the more of them we have, the more we learn how much we are able to tolerate/handle.
That said, the other party also has some responsibilities. Most notably, not to waste another person’s time by strategically concealing the truth or prolonging something by giving a persons false hope. Just generally, people also need to feel less governed by political correctness. Nobody should have to feel bad about rejecting a potential suitor based on their ability to carry heavy weights or procreate, religion, race or sexuality. Of course, its sad that we have to live in a world where people have to hide their disabilities or their sexuality because they feel the need to conform to what society wants. But, Tinder is not the workplace and you will not (as yet) face a law suit for dismissing a person on the basis on some arbitrary factor. That said, what does hiding the truth ever really achieve. Whether its tricking a girl into going on a date with you by cleverly concealing the fact you have wheels or sleeping in her bed for 6 months of her precious child-bearing years when secretly you know you’d rather be snuggling with her brother, you are essentially doing nothing more than wasting somebody’s time as well as your own.
So I guess this whole deal breaker thing is more complicated than I initially anticipated. Rinsers, what are your thoughts? Should political correctness really need to infiltrate the world of dating? Are some cases of dismissing people based on arbitrary factors more legit that others? Feel free to hate on me in the comments below.