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Dudes get a bad rap when it comes to ditching on plans, particularly when it comes to the opposite sex. The classically stereotypical situation is always that the guy is the one standing up the girl on a suddenly lonely date, or ghosting mid-text, or disappearing halfway through formal to leave their partner confused in the bathroom. Are these assumptions valid? Certainly there is some truth to every stereotype, and of course us guys can be pretty bad offenders when we want to be. But I think this supposition is perpetuated, not because of our purported frequency in engaging in this behavior, but because girls are much more vocal in its aftermath.
When a girl gets stood up on a date, all of her friends know about it *in real time*. She’s practically live-tweeting the event via group text to all of her besties back at the house, hitting “send” every two minutes on a text, shit-talking this boy that hasn’t shown yet. And of course the response is phenomenal. A veritable outpouring of both support and hate, and an essential blackballing of the offender, particularly if no valid explanation for his absence was offered.
Contrast that with a guy getting stood up for a date. He checks his watch a few times, orders another drink, because fuck it, he’s already at the bar. He quietly gets a little drunk by himself, maybe checking some sports scores on his phone while he gives this girl a courteous ten more minutes in case something happened. He finally checks the time once more, hits up his friends for a location, and leaves. On the way out, he’s already mentally cut this girl off. He tells his friends she didn’t show, it’s whatever, and he’s on to the next one. Neat, clean, and quiet.
But in my experience, girls are far more likely not to show up for a planned event than guys. Whether it’s skipping out on a party, a group of girls rerouting that night’s plans because something “spontaneous” came up, or simply ending a text conversation through silence, girls are way more prone to exhibit these social disgraces than men. Girls are like flitting birds in the bush — take your eyes off of them for a second and they’re gone. They have the social attention span of an inebriated chipmunk. And it’s not just in romantic ventures, either.
Some of my best friends in college were girls, and it was par for the course that there was really only a fifty-fifty chance of them showing up when given an invite to the bar later. It’s become a running joke that even though we’ve basically lived with them for three years, they’re still essentially ghosts haunting our lives like reappearing apparitions. As Ron Swanson would say, “We still never talk sometimes.”
I’ve never skipped out on a date. Not a single one of my friends has ever stood a girl up. I ghosted on a girl once after hooking up with her for a few weeks, and felt terrible about it. Never did it again. If I’m running late, I let the person know. Basic common courtesy stuff.
Recently, though, all of my close friends and I went through an essential “summer of breakups.” Like dominos, our relationships ended in sequence for one reason or another. Now all finding ourselves single, we’ve re-entered the dating pool and come back with some great stories. I can’t say that any of us are really taking anything seriously, which is absolutely a good thing because it turns out girls flake more frequently than a dandruff-ridden scalp after a workout.
I’m actually writing this piece after just returning from a planned date with a girl I met through a social service app. I gave her a solid half-hour and booked it, now fully expecting to never actually meet this girl in person or hear from her again. And that’s fine. She can live her own life, I’ll live mine, and no hard feelings need to be had. But don’t always assume it’s the guy who ghosts the girl. More often than not, it’s the girl who ditches on the guy.
I don’t have an explanation for why this is the case. Maybe I’m a shitty texter. Maybe I’m too ugly to be seen in public. Maybe telling girls that I write for Grandex isn’t as big a turn-on as I think it is. But for whatever reason, when it comes to my social sphere of friends, I can tell you tons of stories of girls not showing up to plans, but I’ve hardly ever known the reverse to be true.
So, in summation, if you’re making plans with a girl, you better be hedging your bets, because there’s a decent chance she’s not going to show. It’s high time we stop receiving all of the douchey reputation between the sexes. Just most of it..