RIDGEFIELD, Conn. – Can we really tell if our date is having a good time? Stephany Sanderson, 33, remembers when one first date didn’t go as well as she thought it had.
“I went on a date with this guy who I was totally into,” she said. “I had a few too many wines and ended up spilling way too much personal information on that first date. Needless to say, he didn’t return my phone call after that. I guess I gave the impression of too much baggage.”
According to a new study, certain personality traits contribute to being a good judge of whether someone else thinks you’re worth seeing again.
The study, which will be published in Psychological Science, was conducted by German professor Dr. Mitja Back during his teaching appointment at the Johannes Gutenberg University of Mainz.
Dr. Back, an expert on psychological assessment and personality psychology who currently teaches at the University of Munster, studied 190 men and 192 women as they interacted during a speed dating exercise.
Psychologists collected data on the participants’ personalities and kept track of which participant wanted to see another participant again and if they thought that person would want to see them again as well.
Dr. Back and his team concluded participants who were successful at being a good judge of whether someone else thought they were worth meeting again actually fell into stereotypes associated with their sex — men who are promiscuous in nature and women who have an agreeable personality.
“Participants who were a good judge fell
into stereotypes associated with their sex.”
The results in real life.
For Sanderson, not getting a call back for a second date proved her date had a very different experience than she did.
“The next morning, I knew I had blown my chances,” she said. “But I wanted to give it another shot, so I called him. After the second day of him not calling, it was time to move on.”
Sanderson, now a happily married mother of three, said she doesn’t spend much time looking back at dates that turned out less than stellar.
But she is an example of a woman who didn’t act “agreeable” to a potential mate. Sanderson was honest, open and — though with the help of some Pinot Grigio — forthright about her life.
Paul Johnson, 36, of Queens, New York, had a similar experience except he was on the other side of the dining table.
“I went out with this girl on a first date and she was fantastic,” he said. “We had a ton in common and chemistry was there. Overall, I started thinking about her when she wasn’t around and was very interested in seeing her again.”
However, Johnson’s eagerness soon turned to disappointment on the second date, while his date continued to enjoy her time with him.
“She seemed very into me and I into her, but then she proceeded to knock back, I kid you not, two bottles of wine and got totally hammered,” he said. “It was such a turn-off and a huge disappointment.”
It goes to show you never really can tell what someone else is thinking, even if they are showing signs of enjoyment.