“Ding!” It’s your BlackBerry, and he just tweeted. “Ding Ding!” He just updated his Facebook status. With all the technology today, it’s difficult NOT to get in contact with someone. It’s particularly difficult to ignore the urge to text or call when you simply can’t ignore the constant reminders that this guy is alive, running around out there “At Bloomingdales Sale!” or “Waiting for the new season of Californication!”—whatever minute information he has decided to share with the world via the web. Aren’t you just dying to say something in response?
When it comes to making that call or sending that text, there are a few no-brainers (that I am afraid might be new information for some people …).
Before the First Date
Do NOT call him if he didn’t give you his number. Yes, you can probably find it on LinkedIn or Facebook, or maybe by calling the receptionist at his work and pretending to be a client. But there are very few circumstances in which a guy won’t find this behavior downright creepy. And even if he doesn’t find it creepy and you end up going out on a date, the power balance is way off from the beginning. He knows you want him, and badly. Where’s the allure in that?
DO call him if he gave you his card, flirtatiously stole your phone at the bar and punched in his phone number, sent you a Facebook message that included his number and the words “Call me sometime.” This is not the time to be coy. And while it could be incredibly flattering and romantic comedy–like of him to play out the above-mentioned scenario of calling YOUR receptionist and checking your LinkedIn to find you, he probably isn’t going to. Call him; the ball is in your court.
After the First Date
Wait your turn. This one’s pretty self-explanatory, but if you were the one to suggest plans last time, let him do it this time. I know you’re thinking, What harm could it really do to initiate plans two consecutive times? And honestly, maybe none at all. But won’t it feel good when he contacts you all on his own?
Do not call for any other reason than to arrange the next date. Don’t call him to tell him a funny story or ask about how his sick grandmother is doing. Yes, it would be sweet and thoughtful to do so but not at this point in the relationship. It’s far too early to be asking him for the daily play by play. For now he has his mom and his friends for that. You can tell him about the Big Lebowski china set and check up on granny when you are actually ON the date.
When You Are “Seeing Each Other”
First we should clarify what it means to be “seeing each other” for the purposes of these guidelines. “Seeing each other” means you have been seeing each other at least once a week for about four to six weeks. While it can take years to really get to know each other, at this point you should have a pretty good sense of the other person’s schedule, sense of humor, life stresses, and goals, etc. If he has made you feel that he really likes you, take that confidence and own it. Feel free to send him the occasional email with a link to a funny video or text about something that reminded him of you. But be wary of what should be sent in a text and what you should wait to say in person. Novel-length text messages can be overwhelming. You don’t want him sitting at happy hour with his buddies who are wondering, How many texts is she sending?!
Do not step out of a movie/meeting/party/bar to call him. It’s too early to be giving up other parts of your life for this guy. You can call him on your way home. Just shoot him a little text if you miss his call saying, “Sorry, at a ________, call you later.” Or, don’t send one at all and just call later. If it’s an emergency, you are still probably not the person he would call, so don’t worry that you’re missing his call to tell you he is on his way to get his appendix removed.
Do call him if some concert or fun event comes up that you think he would enjoy. Don’t worry too much about the whole taking turns thing anymore. If you have already been on four dates, you know by now you enjoy each other’s company and that he is willing to make time in his schedule for you.
Originally published on BettyConfidential