Post by Karen C - California Post by Dr. Brat
But that was part of your education! I think it's a real mistake to
forbid dating - dating is how we learn what we like and by the time
we're out of college, it's too late to learn some of the social cues and
rules that allow people to find partners.
Got to agree with that. If girls think DS is weird now, just wait till
he's 22 and admits he's never gone on a date. I know some people who,
for various reasons, didn't date till "late", and they are socially
awkward. Personally, I'd be more inclined to forbid him to join a
fraternity than to forbid him to date.
Good point. When I was in undergrad school, and hung out with a bunch of
guys from my project classes and some upper (doing combined grad and ug
classes) there was a smart guy, so geeky that us geeks felt sorry for him.
He kind of hung out with us - a little bit - as in we weren't mean to him -
and did some studying, etc. Anyhow - my little crew of "cool" mech es (we
had a boat - long story) and lots of class work - and would ocassionally go
to movies on campus - and said geek would come along to the movies (don't'
think the boat). Anyhow - the guys goaded me into a "mercy" date - this guy
had some crush on me, and finally I agreed to go out with him. Of course, I
had to drive - and went to get him - almost backed up at the door. He
totally dressed like a 55 year old guy - complete with houndstooth polyester
slacks, a Cuban shirt (the kind you see on old gentleman playing dominoes on
Calle Ocho) - outy, kind of sport-dress shirt, and oxford shoes - with hair
in kind of a weird combover. We went to a nice thai restaurant. And walked
to our table past a table of profs/wives from the Ops Resrch dept (in which
I was an undergrad resrch asst, and dating one of the grad students -
casually). I was dressed more normally (silk shirt, nice jeans, etc). The
profs all waved hi - and as I passed to go to the ladies room - grabbed me
with the big "what the heck query?" - my response - "don't ask" , and Joe
Point being, after the date - which was pleasant enough conversation, but
socially very awkward we went back to his dorm and talked for a short time.
He wanted to continue the "relationship" .Poor guy - I just looked at him
and said - I hate to seem shallow, and maybe this is - but you need to get
more like your age, and not an old man - as in clothes, look, outlook. So,
I agreed to go shopping with him (and some of our group), and help him get a
decent haircut. Thing was - I met his parents - dad worked on campus - very
nice, normal (cooler than son). He had twin younger brothers in high school
- that I liked a lot. But, the mother - wow - she was scarey. Hadn't let
him date at all in high school - or evidently in college. Bought all his
clothes for him, cut his hair . She was a little thing, with huge glasses,
and kind of eccentric looking - but the first son was totally under her
control. It was sad - and he did blossom a bit that year (at least looked
more normal, and made some more friends). But, the mother hated me. There
was no serious relationship on my part - but he got totally overwrought -
and it seemed to me that it was because of his lack of experience socially.
Hanging out with me, and some of the guys was a new experience - and as a
senior in college he was getting the freshman/sophmore thing . That summer
- I was away at work - and he would call, write - etc. It was terrible -
but finally the break-up worked, or he got the point - but I ended up being
kind of mean - which is not really my nature. I don't think that during the
school year it helped that some of the guys would tease me about him
(knowing that it was a friend thing on my part, and whatever on his). I
still remember one day - mid-way through the year - seeing him in the
hallway - outside the engineering library - stack of books, calculator on
belt, and his sweater (kind of a sweater shirt with a collar) on....
BACKWARDS. He'd been like that for quite some time. I was just walking out
of the dean's office with another student - we stopped, looked, and said
"J*** - go fix your shirt..).
I'm sure he's grown up into an accomplished scientist - but have no doubt
that his mother's domination, and strictness with him kind of backfired -
this was one really, really, socially awkward guy.
Post by Karen C - California
My parents never said "you can't date till you're 16 (or 18 or 25)".
They said "we'll think about it when we meet the boy". Well, I was 15
and introduced them to the guy they still wish I'd married, so
obviously, we got permission. Unfortunately, no one since has measured
up to his standard of perfection, as far as they're concerned.
And, really, that's one of the things I think they got right. If they
had given me a firm number, then they wouldn't have been able to put
their foot down if, two weeks after that birthday, I'd brought home some
alcoholic biker dude.
By the time I went off to college, they had a pretty good picture of how
my taste in men ran, and had no major concerns about me dating NOT under
their watchful eye, since I tended toward respectable intellectuals.
I'd even turned down a boy who went to our church regularly (he would've
been acceptable to Mom), so they knew I wouldn't go out with "just anyone".
I didn't date much in high school - I was graduating quite early. But, I
did have guy friends, and some dates (mostly college guys). The parents met
them, and I didn't go crazy, and that was that.
College - well, that involved the whole gamut - dating, some relationships,
some single times, lots of "big brothers" . But, having social skills paid
off as part of an education, and in work. Way too many of the guys I worked
with - especially early on - couldn't communicate and their social
awkwardness certainly affected opportunities. But, then again, I worked in
the "revenge of the kingdom of the nerds" - so sometimes being socially
adept, articulate would backfire in resentment from some guy wearing 2