After dating a guy a while, you want to introduce him to your friends. You’re hoping they’ll see how terrific he is. But what if they don’t? You are torn between wanting to know what they think … and not. Some women defend their man if their friends say anything negative about him. But what if they see something glaring that you’re overlooking?
What if you could get their feedback in a non-threatening manner? Leslie, a friend of a friend, figured out a fun way to do this. She invited her close pals to a party to meet her new guy. Each guest was given a “Rate This Man!” card. After interacting with her new guy, before they left they marked their responses to multiple-choice questions:
___ Not the pick of the litter. Good luck. No!
___ Could be a date. Will you share? Maybe.
___ He’s a treasure. Yes!
___ Keep the lights off; yikes! No!
___ OK, but I’d keep looking. Maybe.
___ Um, sorry, I got distracted. Yes!
___ A cold fish, throw him back. No!
___ Invite friends for company. Maybe.
___ A woman’s man. Mmmmm. Yes!
___ Buy more batteries. No!
___ Oh, what the hell. It’s only sex. Maybe.
___ I’m imagining …, yum. Yes!
Rate This Couple
___ Coffee shop only.
___ Could be fun.
___ Tropical honeymoon.
I wasn’t at the event, nor do I know Leslie, but I’m imagining the guy in question was in on it from the beginning, perhaps even helping create the possible responses. If so, it would show he had a good sense of humor, was confident he’d get good scores, and was a good sport.
Did Leslie and Mr. X review the responses after everyone left? Imagine how awkward it would be if the majority of answers were in the “no” category. At minimum, it would be interesting conversation fodder. It would let you see how he reacted to the information — whether he took it good-naturedly, got defensive, or angry. And it would give you a glimpse into what your friends thought, even though they may be less than candid.
Does it really matter what your friends think as long as you think he’s great? Yes and no. If they are true friends, they are interested in your happiness and good will. Their antennae will be looking for any yellow flags that you may have overlooked. But most friends won’t offer this feedback freely, unless you have asked and they believe you really want it.
Everyone’s opinion is filtered through their own biases. Mr. X may have reminded your best friend of her ex, so she hated him immediately. A male buddy may be harboring a crush on you, so will only point out the negatives of your new guy. Or your sister longs for a relationship so much and wishes one for you, that she’d give thumbs up to any man with a job who’s breathing.
And yet you have to balance their opinions with how you feel. After all, you’re the one dating him and hanging out with him. You may see a tender, caring, sensitive side that doesn’t come out in a party situation.
So if you hear a trend in your friends’ comments, take it to heart. But if only one person doesn’t like him, chock it up to his/her bias. Ideally, you’re able to keep a fair and balanced view of your guy, even as you’re falling for him.
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