Perfect dates make lousy partners?

Posted by Ria, 20 Feb 08

Apparently, if you want to be in a lasting committed relationship, then you better pick the socially awkward type.

According to some new research, the so-called best ‘catches’ on this lovely – or not so lovely – dating land of ours may be the worst choices in the long-run. In social situations, most of us usually seek popular people - who appear to be the most socially appropriate- as romantic partners. However, when it comes to relationships, these people show less satisfaction and commitment than ’socially-awkward’ people.

By self-monitoring, people usually assess how their actions affect others and alter them to fit the appropriateness of the situation. We screen words and behavior to suit the people around us all the time. Remember the day you got yourself so smashed just to fit in with the care-less-attitude gang? Well these are what we call ‘social chameleons.’

Your perfect partner could be online right now...

What are you looking for?

Much as these social chameleons are excellent negotiators and far more likely to be promoted at work than their low self-monitoring peers, when it comes to romantic relationships, there is a hitch.

"High self-monitors may appear to be the kind of people we want to have relationships with, but they themselves are less committed to and less happy in their relationships than low self-monitors," said Northwestern University professor of communication studies Michael E. Roloff. "The desire to alter one's personality to appropriately fit a given situation or social climate prevents high self-monitors from presenting their true selves during intimate interactions with their romantic partners … High self-monitors are very likeable and successful people. However, it appears they’re just not deep."

The researchers surveyed the participants on the levels of emotional commitment in their romantic relationships and evaluated their levels of self-monitoring, intimate communication, levels of emotional commitment, relational satisfaction and relational commitment.

Well, when it comes to face-threatening interactions and honest self-disclosure, they duck probably leaving their partners clueless about the extent of their degree of commitment and regard.

On the other hand, low self-monitors are unlikely to camouflage their feelings or opinions and are more committed to and more satisfied with their relationships. These ‘awkwards’ may ultimately be more genuine and capable of intimate relationships. However, this honesty and loyalty has its downside too because they may be more likely to say blunt and hurtful things.

Given your experience in the dating arena, is this true? So which are you? Social chameleon or socially- awkward ?

Moral: If you had a perfect date on Valentine's day, RUN!!! - Jus kidding ;-)

Tags: perfect dates, socially awkward, commitment in relationships

Responses to "Perfect dates make lousy partners?"

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  1.   homesteader says:
    Posted: 01 Sep 09

    ```These are the Early morning Down under talkers from past Experiences [ Worldwide short phrases } / still 100 extra points . Hehe .

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  2.   Enigma64 says:
    Posted: 01 Sep 09

    Well, since the chat room was mentioned, and if that was the barometer used to illustrate whether this article has any merit, I'd say it probably does. Some of the most shallow and repetitive conversations happen in there and it's always the same individuals having those conversations and/or attacking someone in the room. It's "allegedly" the pretty/popular folk, which amazingly enough are the idolized in society, but maybe that's why divorce is so on the rise too...if this is the lead we are to follow.

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  3. Posted: 31 Aug 08

    oh no!! this is terribly bad news for a social butterfly like myself.

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  4.   Jeff says:
    Posted: 11 Mar 08

    Actually, interesting premise, IMO. Yes, great dates may-or may not-make lousy partners. But I'll bet that just as many lousy dates make great partners because they focus on substance-needed to sustaine a successful relationship-while great dates are good at delivering the good first impression but lack the substance to deliver the goods in the long run. I, myself, like to believe that I make a lousy date, and a terrible, terrible partner. Consistancy, ya know.:) Jeffrey

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  5.   mossimo36 says:
    Posted: 11 Mar 08

    Yes Fala, am a perfect date but lousy partner. I think this was written about me, lol

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  6.   Fkoi says:
    Posted: 08 Mar 08

    And so to sum up: Those folks who alter who they appear to be so that others will like them seem to not be the type of people with whom one would want to form a bond. And the so-called "socially-awkward" people, who are presenting their true selves, and therefore taking social chances and risking rejection of who they really are, not of some front, are more likely to form a "real" bond with another. I have to look into getting some research money from the Department of Redundancy Department. They are evidently giving it away like drunken sailors in a brothel. Now if I could just get a clue as to who is faking it and who really is comfortable with others...

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  7.   mossimo36 says:
    Posted: 07 Mar 08

    Interesting concept. I can see the point of the article after spending some time in the chatroom.

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  8.   earat8d says:
    Posted: 25 Feb 08

    I've been on this site for some time now and can honestly say I have found this study closely parallels many of the types and characters of the people here. Case in point, if you follow the link of Popular Members you will notice that there are a many profiles with fake photos, liars, cheats, etc. in the top 10 to 20 - a shining example of the social chameleon. Also, if you strike up a conversation with many of the quiet types in the Chat Room that you're bound to engage in more mentally stimulating conversation. IMHO.

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  9.   Earat8d says:
    Posted: 25 Feb 08

    I've been on this site for some time now and can honestly say I have found this study closely parallels many of the types and characters of the people here. Case in point, if you follow the link of "Popular Members" you will notice that there are a some profiles with "fake" photos, liars, cheats, etc. in the top 10 to 20 - a shining example of the social chameleon. Also, if you strike up a conversation with many of the "quiet" types in the Chat Room that you're bound to engage in more mentally stimulating conversation. IMHO.

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  10. Posted: 24 Feb 08

    And here I've lived 36yrs. and never would've thought to pick the worst date I've had.....lol

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  11.   fala says:
    Posted: 24 Feb 08

    Nerds rule outpass!

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  12.   outpass35 says:
    Posted: 23 Feb 08

    I myself I like the nerd type any day or even the smart men these type you will learn a lot and they tells you a lot of interesting things so they will always have your attention that what makes them different. But I like them all the same.

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  13.   polyglot says:
    Posted: 23 Feb 08

    I think depending on the day I can be socially awkward and introspective or the outgoing social person. What's encouraging is that based on this study, all those popular kids from high school and the lemmings who hung onto their every word and followed what they did are in horrible relationships. HAH!!

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  14.   ethereal99 says:
    Posted: 22 Feb 08

    I like being & meeting socially awkward people. The tension makes it interesting.

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  15.   fala says:
    Posted: 22 Feb 08

    I'll bet Mossimo is a perfect date. ;-)

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  16.   toye81 says:
    Posted: 21 Feb 08

    How cool. I took a class with Roloff...one of my favorite psych profs for sure. Anyway, I definitely think there is truth to this article/study. People who fit in anywhere easily tend to enjoy being the center of attention, which could also cause them to view relationships only from their own perspectives. Not so much fun for their partners. :-)

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  17.   HereIamBaby says:
    Posted: 21 Feb 08

    what man is perfect??? Smiles, Sharon

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  18.   HereIamBaby says:
    Posted: 21 Feb 08

    Give me a nerd any time...I like smart men! Smiles Sharon

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  19.   fala says:
    Posted: 21 Feb 08

    Never had a perfect date, but plenty of lousy partners. Hmmmmmmmmm

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