Great expectations, we had the greatest expectations

Here’s the thing about work, there are rules and protocols that people need to follow. Here’s the thing about dating, none of those rules and protocols apply.

You see a job posting and criteria for the position. You have an outline and expectation for what the opening entails. In short, you sort of know what you’re getting yourself in to.

Keep-Calm-and-Lower-Your-Expectations1Dating is nothing like that. Initially, you have little idea what the other person expects. Are they looking for short term dating or something long lasting? Are they wanting a friend or something more? Rarely do you have any sense of what you’re getting yourself in to.

Upon being chosen for a position, your employer expects a level of loyalty they may or may not have earned yet. That level of loyalty in dating initially would creep out any person.

Work provides feedback of how you’re doing. Whether it’s a yearly review or just positive remarks on a job well done, you usually have some sense of how well you’re doing.

Dating should have positive feedback when your mate appreciates something you do. But that doesn’t always happen. And yearly reviews would be ridiculous (although periodically hearing things like “I’d appreciate if you’d make dinner more” would probably do wonders for most relationships).

Some days I think I would function better if dating were more business like. Would relationships be more successful if they followed that method?

I’ve been watching a show called Sister Wives which follows how one man and four women function in a plural marriage. Whatever your opinion on plural marriage, it’s interesting to see how they deal with the challenges of every relationship times four. They struggle with expectations and communication much like any other relationship.

This past season they worked to create a family mission statement. The idea being like a mission statement for any business – something to remind people the goals and expectations so they can remain focused on it.

I don’t know if this model is more fitting for a traditional marriage or those that have multiple parties invested in its success. But perhaps more marriages would survive if husbands and wives laid down their expectations before getting together.

But what if people were to lay out those expectations before deciding to date. Would people ever get together if they knew what the other was expecting?

I’ve sat on this post for a couple of months now, unable to figure out how to end it. My previous job paralleled my last serious relationship in that both were pretty emotionally abusive. Since taking my more recent job, I’ve spent a lot of time thinking how much it’s like dating a new person.

There are days when I think I have both under control and then other times when I wish they operated like I expected. But how effin boring would it be if they both went as planned?


About indie librarian

a recently MLS librarian's observations
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