I Saw the Sign and Read Way Too Much Into It

Women are idiots. I know this, because, as a woman, I’m an idiot. We take every little look, touch, clothing choice, text, e-mail, Facebook status update, etc. and read everything we can into it. I hear girls give their account of a dating situation, seeking a well-intentioned but completely inaccurate analysis from their friends and they sound like the flighty back up singers of a Betty Everett song.

“Ok well he asked for my number and I gave him my information, but he e-mailed me instead of calling, so that must mean he doesn’t really want to see me but he felt he had to contact me right?”

“He hasn’t wanted to hang out for over a month, but he still contacts me. So what is that? Is he still interested but just too busy? Is he just keeping me on the back burner until he feels like he wants a relationship?”

“So we went out with his friends, but he didn’t announce to them that I was a girlfriend, so he hates me right?”

Trite. Obsessive. Ridiculous. And all too familiar. I recognize the absurdity in these discussions,  and yet I continue to have them. There are numerous women in my life who are intelligent and understand that it is a complete waste of time to attempt to uncover the deeper meaning in a man’s actions, but they do it anyway. So I have no choice but to believe it’s in inherent in my female nature. Or maybe the average man just bores us so we create depth where it cannot be found.

I can’t imagine a group of guys sitting around having this same conversations we do after a date.  Even more improbable is the thought of them carefully planning their every move in order to hide a deeper meaning beneath the surface of each of their actions. Sure, girls might do it, but let’s be honest, we have more dimensions in our iridescent nail polish than they have in their entire being. So this begs the question, why do we even bother?

Ok this has turned into a lot of man hating. They aren’t as shallow as I pretend they are. It’s just an attempt to nurse an ego that has been wounded by the knowledge that I’ve made erroneous assumptions about the men in my life and their intentions based on actions are no more meaningful than brushing my teeth. (Although maybe he brushed his teeth differently today because he knew I would notice and be impressed…)

The truth is this over-analysis only ever does more harm then good. It can make us, and the guy, more self-conscious than either of us needs to be. He may even be so paranoid about our analysis of his dating tactics that he decides never making a move is better than making one that gets torn apart by the girl and her friends the moment they part ways.

Maybe it’s because we’ve long fallen victim to the game so we are constantly trying to stay one step ahead the only way we know how, understanding the players better than they understand themselves. Either way it should probably stop lest we make dating so complicated that both genders give up altogether.