Board games are easy. They come with a little rule book and only take a couple of hours to figure them out. Dating is not easy. That’s why we called upon two experts in the field of putting people together to help you find your significant other. Dino Andrade and Dina Kampmeyer tackle the subject of love in their own geeky ways.
This week, you wonder about how nerdy your date needs to be, how to stop being so shy around that guy, and walking the fine line of flirty and friendly. If you have any questions for the professors, let us know in the comment section below or on Twitter.
@SirHellsing420: “Will my eventual significant other be just as nerdy as I am?”
The answer to this is entirely up to you, good sir. Given the availability of geeks-only dating sites and search algorithms on sites like OKCupid that allow you to only view profiles containing key words like “geek” or “comics”, you can narrow your search to fellow geeks only. After many years of dating “normal” folks, I personally found that I really wanted to be with a fellow geek or at least someone who was geek-friendly. Dino echoes this sentiment, “In the end it all depends on how much of your life is taken up by your geekdom…the two key ingredients to a lasting relationship are shared values and shared interests. You need BOTH.”
This does not mean that you both need to be into the exact same things, as long as you have enough in common and can respect one another’s differences. Dino believes that “if your partner isn’t into geekdom, then there must be something else that you two can be EQUALLY as passionate about. What you don’t want in the end is for you two to only be tolerating each other’s passions for the sake of a shiny new relationship.”
@Nora_Mermaid: “how do I stop being shy in front of guys?”
This is a question that haunts many of us. Not everyone is naturally good at talking to new people and as Dino wisely points out, “some people are shy while others are gregarious. The mistake often made is not understanding why everyone isn’t like us.” Your own unique brand of confidence will charm the right person, even if you are shy. Don’t try and be someone you are not, but do get out there and practice talking to people.
Our advice is to find a safe place like a convention or a comic book shop and just start talking to people. Don’t worry about if they’re single or not, just strike up a conversation about the book that they’re reading or the t-shirt that they’re wearing. Smile, be confident, and pay attention to cues from the other person about whether or not they want to continue the conversation. Once you get more comfortable talking to new people, then you can work on your flirting skills.
Dino also recommends that you “try not to go it alone. Have a friend with you. This helps with feeling safe. A trusted friend in the conversation can help with feelings of shyness and awkwardness.” You are certainly not alone out there, but just remember that if you are somewhere with a friend, make sure you still talk to new people.
@CassandraDasher: “Is there a charm for figuring out when a person is flirting vs. just being friendly?”
This is a very tricky subject, but one worth exploring. If you think someone might be flirting with you (and you’re interested in them), then flirt back. Smile, say something nice about them, and ask them about themselves. Dino knows that “each person is different and can give off confusing signals without realizing that they’re doing it” and recommends that “if you suspect someone is flirting with you, go ahead and ask ‘are you flirting with me or just being friendly?'”
Dating is about being brave and confident. You could spend your whole life trying to figure out what other people are thinking, but my best advice is to quickly analyze the situation the best you can, put it out there that you’re interested, and if they don’t ask you out, be brave and ask them yourself. Most of the time, the person will appreciate your honesty and they’ll be respectful in their response (even if it’s a no). You’ll either get a date out of it, or you will at least have put yourself out there and done something brave. That bravery and experience will help you out with the next person.
Meet Our Professors of Love:
Dino Andrade is a voice-over actor and the founder of SoulGeek.com, a dating website catering to the geek community. Dino also hosts bimonthly mixers in Van Nuys, CA. SoulGeek has had much success with many a successful marriage and even experienced their first SoulGeek baby recently.
Featured Image Credit: Funimation/Princess Jellyfish