BY: KEZIA ROYER-BURKETT
“You never get a second chance to make a first impression.” One of the most popular sayings on the social understanding of first impressions. First impressions when it comes to business is one thing, but first impressions when it comes to romance and relationships is a whole other ball game. When we first meet someone we like, we want to ensure that the first impression the person has is a good one. When we are interested in someone, we tend to showcase our best behaviour long after the first impression to ensure the person we like sees the best we have to offer, the best of who we are and who we hope to be. But what if your first impression doesn’t necessarily represent who you are and someone writes you off entirely? This is possible and I feel like it sort of happened to me. A guy added me on Facebook and started messaging me. I had never met him and he appeared visually appealing from his pictures and he seemed to represent himself well on his social media platforms. I don’t usually respond when random guys message me on social media, but I felt like he was different so I decided to return his messages. Our conversation was light and casual but he intrigued me. One night by accident I sent him a voice note I meant to send to a friend, but that was regarding a conversation I was having with him. The Facebook guy who I had never met but only had a couple of conversations with over text was offended and never spoke to me again. I felt terrible, the guy hadn’t even gotten to know me or see the best side of me before we could meet. In the development of my initial impressions, I made a bad impression that ended anything before it began. I was a little disappointed in myself; I had never really been in the position of making such a bad impression on a guy that he just didn’t want to talk to me anymore.
Then recently I had reached out to a guy that I use to go to high school with that seemed like a guy that had his life together. He was good-looking, had a career, seemed responsible and an overall upstanding guy. I initiated our conversation after his many comments and likes on my social media. Our texts conversations felt forced by me, and I thought he just wasn’t interested until one day our conversation got a little sexual. Our discussion stumbled on the topic of oral sex, and this guy began messaging me like had had never messaged me before. After the conversation I thought to myself, this isn’t the guy for me, and the impression the conversation left on me was this guy was only interested in sex, and that was a red flag to keep it moving. The next day this guy initiated dialogue with me, something he rarely did before that. Finally, I was getting what I wanted from him but because I was so turned off from the sexually driven conversation the night before I didn’t message him back and don’t think I ever will again. I’m left wondering if dating as a single mother in my thirties, can get any worse or does it only go up from here? I find that dating in my thirties people have a lot less tolerance. One lousy impression could completely call off getting to know the person more. Time is valuable, and no one seems to be willing to waste their precious time if there are warning signs of intolerable characteristics early on. Where is the balance in looking past minor faux pas and flaws and heeding the warning signs of a toxic relationship? That I haven’t figured out yet, for now, I just listen to my intuition and hope I can find a balance between investing my valuable time attempting to know someone and knowing when my time is better served elsewhere.
If you have navigated the waters of being a single mom and dating and are now in a successful relationship, please share your journey and any tips and practical advice you can provide for us ladies. If you want to share stories about bad first impressions in a romantic situation, please feel free to e-mail them to Kezia@carib101.com.