18 Ugly Myths About Modern Dating – Debunked

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Many of you may have seen this article floating around the interwebs by now, titled “18 Ugly Truths About Modern Dating That You Have To Deal With.”

Call me an idealist, but I don’t think these ‘truths’ can be seen as universal, and our future generations would be in (more) trouble if they were.

So, here is a response to this list, written by the romantic idealist inside me. The original points are in bold below.

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1. The person who cares less has all the power. Nobody wants to be the one who’s more interested.

Since when are relationships about power? To say someone has “all the power” is to say that they’re in control of both the relationship and the other person. It’s also to say that the other person doesn’t have enough self-respect to walk away from somebody who doesn’t care about them, and will follow them around trying to get their attention.

Healthy relationships are about collaboration and cooperation. A team taking on life together. What’s described here is not a healthy relationship.

2. Because we want to show how cavalier and blasé we can be to the other person, little psychological games like ‘Intentionally Take Hours Or Days To Text Back’ will happen. They aren’t fun.

Call when you want to call, text when you want to text. There should be no games or manipulation when building, again, a *healthy* relationship. Two people who genuinely are interested and want to get to know each other will have no reason to play around with the other’s feelings. Maturity plays a large role in this.

3. A person being carefree because they have zero interest in you looks exactly like a person being carefree because they think you’re amazing & are making a conscious effort to play it cool. Good luck deciphering between the two.

…What? Again, it’s a matter of maturity between the partners. If someone is really not interested in you at all, you will know. If they are, they’ll put in the effort to see you and get to know you.

If they’re not doing that, they’re not really interested.

4. Making phone calls is a dying art. Chances are, most of your relationship’s communication will happen via text, which is the most detached, impersonal form of interaction. Get familiar with those emoticon options.

While I do agree with this for the most part (I hardly ever talk to my girlfriend on the phone, it’s all via text), I think it has to be addressed that when first building a relationship or for milestones such as asking out on the first date, giving big news, or even breaking up – there is no substitute for a phone call.

I discuss calling and not texting a date invite in 8 Acts Of Chivalry To Bring Back.

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5. Set plans are dead. People have options and up-to-the-minute updates on their friends (or other potential romantic interests) whereabouts thanks to texts & social media. If you aren’t the top priority, your invitation to spend time will be given a “Maybe” or “I’ll let you know” and the deciding factor(s) will be if that person has offers more fun/interesting than you on the table.

Stop it. Just…stop it. Where is this fantastically apathetic attitude towards building relationships coming from? The author is making it sound like everything is on a whim and basically if the other person has nothing better to do, I guess they’ll sort of agree to go out with you. I mean maybe. It depends kinda.

A real date will be planned between two people. See you at 7:30 on Friday night, we have reservations at 8:00. Thanks.

6. Someone who hurt you isn’t automatically going to have bad karma. At least not in the immediate future. I know it only seems fair, but sometimes people cheat and betray and move on happily while the person they left is in shambles.

This one is mostly true, except  I don’t think people who cheat and betray *always* move on happily. Anyone with a sense of compassion would feel bad about what they’ve done to someone they care about.

Though I suppose if they were compassionate, they wouldn’t have done it in the first place. I discuss this more in depth in this article.

7. The only difference between your actions being romantic and creepy is how attractive the other person finds you. That’s it, that’s all.

As much as I hate to admit it…I’ve heard more than one person say this. While looks aren’t everything, there might be something to it. Can’t change human nature.

8. “Let’s chill” & “Wanna hang out?” are vague phrases that likely mean “let’s hookup” — and while you probably hate receiving them, they’re the common way to invite someone to spend time these days, and appear to be here to stay.

This one is true, but it should be noted that these don’t show any real investment by the other person to improve a relationship. If two people are casual and have a mutual understanding about their circumstances, then fine. But if you’re looking to build something long term, you’ve got to do better than that.

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9. Some people just want to hookup and if you’re seeking more than sex, they won’t tell you that they’re the wrong person for you. At least, not until after they score your prize. While human decency is ideal, honesty isn’t mandatory.

If you’re not able to spot a player or someone who is just trying to use you for one thing rather than really getting to know you, maybe this will help you.

10. The text message you sent went through. If they didn’t respond, it wasn’t because of malfunctioning phone carrier services.

This is true. It’s 2014 and everyone is attached to their phones, telling someone you “didn’t get their text” is a cop-out. If you don’t hear back after a couple of texts, don’t push the envelope by sending more. It will do more bad than good.

11. So many people are scared of commitment and being official that they’ll remain in a label-free relationship, which blurs lines and only works until it doesn’t. I’ve said it many times before, I’ll say it again – “we’re just talking” is opening the door for cheating that technically wasn’t cheating because, hey, you weren’t together together.

There is truth to this one if, again, you’re not working on building a mature and healthy relationship. This article seems to be perpetuating the anti-commitment hookup culture and it’s really only talking about people who aren’t secure enough in what they want to define it.

12. Social media creates new temptations and opportunities to cheat. The private messaging and options for subtle flirtation (e.g. liking of pictures) aren’t an excuse or validation for cheating, but they certainly increase the chances of it happening.

Ohhhh here we go. I’ve heard so many things about how “Facebook” is now being listed on something like 30% of divorce reasons? As if people never cheated or got divorced before Facebook and social media…

We are surrounded by temptation all day, every day. People who will cheat will find a way to do it without social media, and people who won’t cheat…won’t cheat, period. Blaming social media is a flimsy excuse for not having self-control.

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13. Social media can also create the illusion of having options, which leads to people looking at Facebook as an attractive people menu instead of a means of keeping contact with friends & family.

Social media is a viable way to meet new people, I don’t care what anyone says. I’ve made some great friends just through mutual interests or connections online. Facebook is actually the catalyst for how my girlfriend and I ended up re-connecting after 5 years (remind me to tell you the story sometime, it’s a good one).

To call it a “people menu” is to cheapen and creepify (I just made that up) the idea of meeting new people. What would you have if you only talked to the people you already know? A boring life, that’s what.

14. You aren’t likely to see much of someone’s genuine, unfiltered self until you’re in an actual relationship with him or her. Generally people are scared that sincerely putting themselves out there will result in finding out that they’re too available, too anxious, too nerdy, too nice, too safe, too boring, not funny enough, not pretty enough, not some other person enough to be embraced.

Oh so everyone in a relationship is just living a lie and putting on a facade to make themselves seem like what the other person wants, and is not being genuine?

The cynical immaturity is strong with this one.

15. Any person you get romantically involved with you’ll either wind up staying with forever or breaking up with them at some point. These are equally terrifying concepts.

GAH. WHAT? Let me tell you something – if you break up with someone, then it wasn’t meant to last and you’re free to build something new with somebody who is better suited for you. I wouldn’t call this “terrifying,” but instead a silver lining to a temporary emotional slump that comes along with a break-up.

And if it’s terrifying to be with someone forever, then you’re with the wrong person. Sorry.

16. When dating, instead of expressing how they feel directly to you, a person is more likely to post a Facebook status or Instagram a Tumblr-esque photo of a sunset with a quote or song lyric of someone else’s words on it, and while it may not mention your name, it’s blatantly directed at you.

If they’re like, 16, then yes.

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17. There are plenty of people who’ll have zero respect for your relationship and if they want the person you’re with, they’ll have no qualms with trying to overstep boundaries to get to ‘em. Girl code and guy code are wishful thinking and human code isn’t embedded in everyone.

I don’t know what kinds of friends this author has, but it sounds like they need some new ones.

18. If you get dumped, it’s probably going to be pretty brutal. People can cut ties over the phone and avoid seeing the tears stream down your face or end things via text and avoid hearing the pain in your cracking voice and sniffling nose. Send a lengthy text and voilà, relationship over. The easy way out is far from the most considerate.

Everyone deals with things in their own way. There is no predicting how someone will break up with you, if they’re going to. Some will be more direct about it and some will try to avoid the issue altogether and just take the easy way out. It’s never an easy situation regardless of what side you’re on.

If you care about the person but it’s just not going to work, then it’s devastating to actually do the breaking up. If you’re on the receiving end and it’s not your choice, then it’s devastating to be broken up with. It’s a hard situation, and everyone will approach it differently. Again, the situation the author describes here is chock-full-o’-immaturity.

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Most of the points described in the original article, sound to me, like one or both partners building this so-called relationship just aren’t ready for something serious. They’re not mature enough to live their life alongside another person and they’re definitely not mature enough to be up front and honest with the person they’re supposed to be caring about. It sounds a lot like one, or both partners are settling for less than they deserve – which you should never do.

The reason I created the New Chivalry Movement is to combat the perpetuation of nonsense like this. Stop accepting it. Stop making it normal. Stop thinking it’s the only way things can be.

You deserve better.

Click here to get my new e-book, The Gentleman’s Advantage!

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41 Comments

  1. Richard on April 6, 2014 at 12:25 pm

    again I find he is spot on with his observations and comments
    if you’re with someone and you’re not thinking about and relishing thoughts of what tomorrow will bring together you are with the wrong person.

    • Nancy on April 6, 2014 at 12:57 pm

      True!

  2. Kate on April 6, 2014 at 1:16 pm

    If you were so original with your stuff, then how come everytime I google ur aticles, i find others that have already been written? stop plagiarizing, and come up with your own shit and pictures.

    Also, stop acting like a 30K millionaire…you aren’t a millionaire.

    • James Michael Sama on April 6, 2014 at 1:20 pm

      Sorry Kate, not sure what you mean? This is a response article to one that was previously written, so of course it’s going to contain the other content from the other article…

      Can you give me some examples of what has already been written? All of my articles are written by me…nobody else.

      Also I wasn’t aware that writing a personal blog has anything to do with financial position, nor was I aware that you have any idea how much money I do or don’t have.

      Thanks for helping my blog ratings by spending your time on my website, though. 🙂

      Best,

      – James

      • Kate on April 6, 2014 at 1:25 pm

        Idk, maybe I saw online people talking about who you really are. Trying to be someone you are not, what rating? you aren’t making a dime from the “views” not until you monetize your content.

        And no, please stop trying to imitate James Bond. Your chin is like quadrupule the size to the real james bond. and Maybe lose 50 lbs and…your hairline.



      • James Michael Sama on April 6, 2014 at 1:28 pm

        I know I’ve put on a few pounds but I’m working on taking it off again – it’s a long road, but I’m sure you wouldn’t understand since you’ve got a perfect body and have nothing you’d like to change about yourself.

        So you saw online people, who have never met or spoken to me, talking about who they think I am? And took their words as fact? That’s an interesting concept but not surprising in a world of social media and immediate judgment.

        Also, my content is monetized. 🙂

        Thanks again for your feedback, I know being completely anonymous online and trash-talking someone you’ve never met from behind a keyboard takes real courage.

        Have a fantastic day!

        – James



    • Angela Rose on April 6, 2014 at 6:43 pm

      He’s not acting like a 30K millionaire, it’s called maturity. Also, I highly doubt he’s plagiarizing people, I just googled his articles (as you said you have), and I have seen similar articles, but definitely not word-for-word. So he has similar tastes, morals, and opinions as other people; that means he is plagiarizing? What? And as for using the same pictures as other people, I know that when I have an abstract profile picture, sometimes I’ll stumble across some stranger who has the same picture. Does that mean they plagiarized me, or vise versa? Not really…

      Oh, and if you are looking for an argument (which clearly you are, since there was no point or concrete evidence for your comment.. at all) then at least have the decency not to swear.. It raises the impression people get about your maturity by about 90%. 🙂

    • jacquelyn swindle on April 8, 2014 at 12:20 pm

      What?!….

  3. Kate on April 6, 2014 at 1:33 pm

    Your content is not monetized LOL.
    Trust me on that..and I see you are not only a know it all but a liar.
    Feel bad for those who read your shit and praise u for it. a few pounds? lol few? lol. ok

    • James Michael Sama on April 6, 2014 at 1:35 pm

      I’m working on probably 30-ish pounds, so definitely more than a few haha. I got too comfortable when I got into a relationship, I’ve made a little progress though, should’ve seen me a couple of months ago!

      Actually this blog does provide me with a quite satisfactory income (notice the ads at the bottom of the articles, you can learn more at WordAds.co), especially considering I only started it a year ago. It took awhile but it’s finally paying off.

      Thanks again for being so observant!

      – James

      • Lolita on April 6, 2014 at 5:43 pm

        What do you mean with,” I got too comfortable when I got into a relationship”? Be in love it is no excuse to get fat, dude!



      • James Michael Sama on April 6, 2014 at 5:52 pm

        Oh totally, but you know how it is, you start hanging out and watching movies and ordering takeout and next thing you know, you’ve packed on the pounds haha. I got lazy, but I’m back working out again, feels good!



  4. jesica on April 6, 2014 at 2:01 pm

    Wow…There always has to be one in the crowd!! Personally I’d like to thank you. Your articles are very informative and enlightening..As for the James Bond thing..it works 🙂

    • Martin Smith on April 6, 2014 at 2:29 pm

      I was thinking the same thing. Kate seems very angry at someone

  5. Pam Moore on April 6, 2014 at 2:01 pm

    Wow lady (and I use the term loosely)! If you don’t like his page or what he writes why don’t you just go away instead of slamming him? Kinda like TV ~ if you don’t like what’s on, change the channel. There is nothing wrong with quoting other content and putting your own twist on it. I believe this blog is designed to make people think about their own behavior and maybe do some self-improvement, but you obviously aren’t ready for this level yet. Might I politely suggest starting with an etiquette page?

  6. rlcarterrn on April 6, 2014 at 2:37 pm

    Great responses! You’re so right in saying that most of these “truths” are only true for people who are behaving in immature & unhealthy ways.

  7. Colleen C on April 6, 2014 at 3:07 pm

    I enjoy your articles, and I like the message you are sending out. I am sorry for that poor woman (Kate) who is so angry and hateful toward you. Keep up all the positive work, and I hope you continue in with much success. C

  8. Andrea Rayna on April 6, 2014 at 3:19 pm

    Kate, I don’t know who hurt you in your life, who abused you, disappointed you, betrayed you, abandoned you, but you are living in a place of pain, bitterness and hate. Know how I know? I used to be you. I still struggle with the demon anger, and his partner depression. Lashing out hurts yourself the most. I will hold a good thought for you until you can hold it yourself, and I’ll hope that you find some peace and love, somewhere.

    James, walk briskly away from toxic people.

  9. Kirk on April 6, 2014 at 4:05 pm

    James continues to show class that others can learn from simply by replying to the haters. I am quite sure that he has the power to hit the “delete” button if someone comments negatively to his content. Instead, he engages them so that there is no doubt to the point he is trying to get across. Just as others have said before, if you don’t agree with the content, then let’s have an adult conversation about it. If you can’t act like an adult, then you shouldn’t try to hold a conversation like one.

    • James Michael Sama on April 6, 2014 at 4:08 pm

      Thanks Kirk, I really appreciate your comment. I’m always willing to discuss the actual issues at hand if people don’t think that what I promote (love, respect, and caring in relationships) are viable things to strive for. I have a lot to learn and the only way I can better myself is to be open to feedback from others, good or bad.

      But baseless personal attacks just let people know the commenter really doesn’t have anything of value to add to the conversation.

  10. tinablogsalot on April 6, 2014 at 7:11 pm

    I just want to say how much I love and appreciate your blog! I wish all men thought like you. I actually just read that Thought Catalog article a few mins ago, and while I felt like most of those were true (at least from my crappy generation) I also felt like someone needed to show the author that not all relationships are like that. Reading that article just confirmed my thoughts on guys and relationships and it really depressed me. Yours brought my spirits up and showed me that is is possible to find a mature guy out there. 🙂

  11. Matt on April 6, 2014 at 9:43 pm

    James James James….again with one of the best blogs around on this subject. You keep it very neutral, Ive read elsewhere and similar blogs/articles where it sways the blame towards one sex or the other.

    Ive been on 12 or so dates with women since my split, and meeting the ‘representative’ is strong in todays society. I think its almost a turnoff to be honest about yourself when getting to know someone these days, because it seems to scare them off. It worked in my last relationship for 4.5 years. We were both open and honest in the beginning and it lead to some great memories! And the relationship didnt feel like work! I never played any of these games with her, up until the end I was always eager to to text her/call her in the morning or see her before she went to work, and she was the same way. If she/he likes you, they will want to talk/text as much as you do! Everything flowed, we had our little bumps in the road but aside from that there was no ‘waiting just the right time to call back’ or ‘playing it cool to not come off as needy’.

    Ive ditched several women who always resort to this, waiting til the last minute to confirm plans or make up their mind. My schedule is usually packed with work, crossfit, and cooking/eating. What little free time I have I can spend it in any sort of way with friends/family/alone….so if Im asking you to dinner or a night out in the city, please dont leave me hanging on a whim because when you bail at the last moment, trying to reschedule with my friends at the very last minute doesnt work…and latley Ive spent the time alone catching up on sleep! (Getting tired of it, no pun intended)

  12. naturegirl on April 6, 2014 at 10:20 pm

    Congratulations James, you have yourself a Kate-Troll. That means you have made some waves among the web-surfs. Just remember not to feed em and they get bored and move on to the next one. – I’m about to break my own advice by saying:

    Although I will admit that at first I thought maybe she was one of your early “pre-maturity” girlfriends, at first. LOL. Under an assumed name now so you wouldn’t figure it out. She sounds vindictive, which would explain why she’s an x. heh.

  13. rlcarterrn on April 7, 2014 at 12:08 am

    Whoever this Kate person is, she needs to get a life. Criticizing someone’s content is one thing (even though her criticisms of your work were really quite baseless), but going after their physical appearance is even more immature & ridiculous. Keep up the great work, James, & don’t let bitter people like her get you down.

  14. moriaus on April 7, 2014 at 12:46 am

    I really like this one 🙂 Well expressed! Would re-blog.

  15. KJC on April 7, 2014 at 12:51 am

    The original article sounds like it was written by a 16 year old. I know that my age group is often considered the hook-up generation, but I don’t have a single friend who actually lives that way, and my friends have been from all over the country. I think many who do feel like “everyone” is doing it, so they couldn’t find a serious relationship even if they did decide they wanted one. But really, there are many people out there looking for committed, meaningful relationships. I am thankful I married a good man who knew what he wanted! 🙂

  16. Flower on April 7, 2014 at 11:50 am

    I agree with most of your comments except for the last one. I totally agree with the author’s comment of “The easy way out if far from the most considerate.” I have been “dumped” via text and it wreaks of cowardice and is immature. To say “everyone deals with things differently” is a cop out. I usually agree with most of what you have to say, but totally disagree that this one was off-base in some way. If you’re making the decision to break things off, then have the decency to talk to them face to face. If that’s not “do-able” then have some modicum of respect to at least make a phone call.

  17. totallyrandomgoodadvice on April 7, 2014 at 9:23 pm

    Ooooh, I hate it when my Sweetie is late! And I am just terrible at playing it by ear, unless that’s the backup plan. For some reason I’m okay with that…

  18. MeAndDating on April 8, 2014 at 11:14 am

    Yes, dating is risky and tricky, but what’s the alternatives? Weddings and funerals? I think if we accept that failure is the norm, then when Love does happen, it’s…wonderful. All the bad dates, mishaps, deceits and disappointments are quickly forgotten and seem a price worth paying. Dating isn’t easy for guys either…

  19. […] See on jamesmsama.com […]

  20. NC on April 8, 2014 at 9:45 pm

    Can i just say, every time i read this blog and someone comes and bashes you, you always have the utmost respect for them and answer them in the most eloquent ways. Definition of a gentleman and a beacon to all. I may not agree with everything you say, but you sir, are without a doubt a gentleman and i salute you

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  27. Brendan on April 14, 2014 at 12:35 pm

    I think a variable being missed in this discussion is the STAGE of the relationship that’s being discussed. The original article, your response, and the reader comments seem to lump budding new romance and commmitted relationship into one category. As we get older we’ve all been hurt, put in too much too soon, or been the victim/offender of silly games at one time or another. To me it all boils down to our good old friends investment and interest. In my eyes, a mature, healthy relationship evolves organically in terms of the interest and the investment of both parties. Sure, in the beginning there may be some hesitation to throw yourself out there as was pointed out by the original article (albeit in a really misguided and negative tone), but building a relationship with someone is about moving PAST those types of reservations, hesitations, doubts, and moving on to an open/trusting partnership. I totally agree that people need to stop perpetuating the anti-commitment hookup culture. Bring chivalry back!

  28. Vera Blount on May 15, 2014 at 12:51 pm

    For me, this is a great post! Don’t mind Kate, she just doesn’t know the meaning of love, care and respect. Anyways, i agree that you shouldn’t blame social media such as Facebook if your partner cheated on you. A cheater will always be a cheater, with or without social media. A loyal and faithful person, will always be faithful and loyal, with our without Facebook. By the way, i found an adult online dating app http://mixxxer.com, heard about it?

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