Look out for the future, because you never know what it might bring…
Question #90744 posted on 01/11/2018 1:54 p.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

I'm going to start a new life in Texas in a few weeks. As some of you may know, I'm not very good at making new friends, and I'm even worse at dating. I'd like to do better at both of those things, but I need some advice.

Would it be better to split those into separate but concurrent pursuits, or to combine them? Maybe I'm not very good at figuring out how to ask that. Basically, should I try to make friends and then ask girls out that I've already kinda gotten to know? Or should I mostly try to date girls that I'm not also trying to be friends with?

Thanks,
-The Entomophagist

P.S. No, I'm not retiring yet.

A:

Dear you,

I've seen it done either way. I think our current culture is in a place where we feel like going on a date is a jump into a relationship, but that doesn't have to be the case. A date can just be date. Going on dates is a great way to make friends, and it is a really good way to get into a relationship.

I'd say as long as you don't come across as wanting to move too fast, dating can be a way to combine your pursuits. Overall though, it will depend on the person that you are trying to get to know. Everyone is different, so you will have to just play it by ear.

You'll do great!

-Sunday Night Banter

A:

Dear Ento,

In my experience things work better when you’re friends with the person first. I’m totally fine with asking people I don’t know that well on dates, but without a previous friendship things just never materialize. Even if a date goes really well, if I didn’t have a lot of contact with a person before the date, there generally isn’t a lot of contact after the date. I’m sure both ways work, but my experience has been that knowing the person before dating them turns out better even if it requires patience.

I would also recommend that you don’t make friends with someone only so you can date them. To me it’s not a good mindset and it’s not really honest. Just get to know people who are cool, and if you are interested in dating them down the line then go ahead and ask them out. I wouldn’t overthink making friends/finding potential dates too much; just spend time with people you think are cool and the whole friendship will happen naturally.

Hope this helps!

Tipperary

A:

Dear Ento,

I would only ever date friends, personally. It's risky because you don't want to lose friendships/make them weird, but I really can't bring myself to trust non-friends enough to date them.

-Sheebs

A:

Dear Ento,

Well...

bothways.gif (source)

I mostly dated girls I was friends with in high school and sometimes in college and those were lots of fun and taught me what I wanted in a wife but I ended up getting married to someone with whom I had not really established a friendship yet.

So my advice is go on dates with friends because they are low risk if they don't work out and you can have lots of fun, and then if there is someone you don't know but want to be closer with, ask them out too.

Basically, the more you date, the more likely you will get married. Everyone has a different story so don't try to fit someone else's mold too much.

-Spectre

A:

Dear Ento,

Definitely get to know the person a bit first, but I find it hard to transition between friends and something more.

Personally, I've only had success at dating people that I was friendly with, but not definitively friends with. Establishing at least some base of friendliness is crucial, because dating is harder if you don't know anything about each other. But if you're interested in someone I would make your interest known early, because in my experience, dating someone with whom you're already good friends is difficult. If I wasn't interested in someone when I first got to know them, that's unlikely to change. If I've spent a lot of time with them as friends, transitioning to date mode is difficult.

Love,

Luciana

A:

Dear Ento,

Luciana nailed it. I think a little time and extra attention before trying to date goes a long way. But that transition thing can be so confusing. 

I've gone out with guys who were clearly trying to compartmentalize. They asked me out without knowing me at all, and then stopped hanging out with me when it didn't work out. That's was fine. 

I've also been out with guys who I sort of knew but wasn't friends with. When it didn't work out we ended up better friends because of that time we had spent together. Sometimes a friendship is helped by having explored the dating option early. This only works if efforts are made to show that everyone is still comfortable and not hurt. 

Dates really are just a way to get to know someone and are really great for making friends. They aren't all the marriage prep they're cracked up to be. All they are is a commitment to spend 1-2 hours getting to know each other. No biggie. 

Good luck in Texas! If you're driving anywhere near it, take a swing by those Guadalupes. They are some of the prettiest mountains I ever seen. 

Babalugats