Picture this – you see someone you’re interested in on Instagram, but you’ve never met them in person. You don’t know how to “run into them” anywhere, so you slide in their DMs. You both flirt and laugh for a little while before one person asks the other for their phone number. Now, the conversation has been moved to the iMessages – there’s endless smirking and heart eye emojis. Things are going well. This new and exciting energy lasts for a few days, there are “good morning” texts and check-ins whenever you can sneak a second away from work during the day. One night, the person you’ve been texting decides to Facetime you without warning or appointment and you decline (because like, duh – I wasn’t cute yet). Another day passes, you finally discuss meeting in person. The first suggestion the guy has is, “Oh, I can come see you – let’s watch a movie and maybe we can order food.” Instantly, you’re annoyed because obviously.. why would I allow you in my home for our first-time meeting? The temporary excitement, interest, and attraction start to fade. You repeat this cycle with other people, until one sticks. The end. This is “dating” as a millennial in 2018.
Occasionally, you luck up with someone that is willing to take you on a date or two before asking for the Netflix and Chill, but Netflix and Chill is always a part of the equation. When I was just learning how to date, what type of guys I’m interested in, and what dating really meant I was fine with accepting the bare minimum from men because I didn’t know any better. Now that I’ve started to grow into myself at a deeper level, I’ve realized how difficult dating is because no one ever taught us how to do it. When you’re a young woman it is easy to accept whatever you’re given because we must first learn the experience of dating – this in turn makes men believe that their behavior and lack of effort is acceptable because we’ve allowed it for so long. The challenge is that once a woman learns to expect more from a man, we are now in competition with the woman that don’t. Many men would rather choose to deal with women who require less from them, rather than those of us expecting more. The dating pool is suddenly extremely small.
In my experience, “talking” is an informal concept of establishing a connection – there is no real expectations regarding whether you date other people, how often we communicate, when we see each other, and how we spend our quality time. However, when I am “dating” someone – we are equally as persistent about communicating, planning thoughtful new experiences as dates, we slowly start to introduce our families, and we are clear about our feelings for each other. Not sure about you, but I prefer the latter. The talking stage is supposed to be the prerequisite to dating, unfortunately many of us have gotten stuck there a few times before. With the combination of our generational practices and social media, men are able to put in less and less effort to make a girl feel special. But can we really blame them if that’s what other women are allowing them to do? Netflix and Chill is a privilege given during an exclusive relationship. While it may seem like a good idea because it is a norm in millennial culture, baby you are settling! Require a man to do the things that make you feel good because if you don’t, HE WON’T!