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Alright, this was absolutely ridiculous. I thought it could have been a phase, but I am absolutely sure now. I am terrible at holding conversation on dates. I have no idea what to talk about. I ask about interests, I often know nothing about them, and I shift through conversations many times before being met by 5 minutes of utter silence. I know that is a gigantic red flag on a date, but I don't think the individual would matter.

On the way there and back, there was tons of silence. A movie alleviated the middle ground, but we covered the content of the movie for the first 5 minutes (of the 15) in the car back. It was too late to really do anything. I'm probably going to have to write this girl off because I don't think she got anything out of it. How do I stop this madness? I know I am introverted, but I can't just blame stuff like this off on being introverted.


Aside from "Just be yourself and have fun" which does not tell me anything, does anyone have some insight on this? A step by step rulebook for this kind of things ranging from social graces to interaction in general. I am manually taking action anyhow, so I may as well know what I am doing.

I know INTPs are known for being....them, but I can't just starting talking about high-end philosophical conversations in that situation. I can't talk about extremely rational things, because it just doesn't fit.
 

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What types of girls do you date? ...As in, how do you meet these girls? Do you get to know them a little before dating? Or do you like to get to know them through the dating process?
 

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What types of girls do you date? ...As in, how do you meet these girls? Do you get to know them a little before dating? Or do you like to get to know them through the dating process?
This specific one I originally met as part of swim team, she goes to my church, so we know a little bit about one another. And for now, I have found my type to be more introverted type girls. My goal was to use the process to get closer together, but if neither of us can even carry on a conversation due to mental block, that makes things difficult.
 

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I empathize. There is a guy who hangs out at the coffee shop. I would be happy to befriend him, but every time I have tried to talk to him, I have started babbling like an idiot, asking the same questions twice, saying stupid things that make me seem crazy, or boring him because I have no idea how to carry on a conversation based on mutual interrogation.

I have no trouble when talking to people who just volunteer information freely and who expect me to do the same. Having to think of things to ask is not something that comes naturally for me, nor is knowing how I am expected to answer other people's questions. I sometimes wish all communication consisted entirely of statements.
 

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I used to be this way, but I kind of used it to my advantage. Like when I had my ex over at my house for the first time, I didn't know what to say, so I didn't say anything. I just looked at her, very intesnely and she found it really romantic. So if all else fails, just seduce her with your eyes.
 

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I used to be this way, but I kind of used it to my advantage. Like when I had my ex over at my house for the first time, I didn't know what to say, so I didn't say anything. I just looked at her, very intesnely and she found it really romantic. So if all else fails, just seduce her with your eyes.
What should one do if one is too shy to make direct eye contact, or if the other person is? I think that despite the difficulty, trying to get words out is still easier than trying to effectively stare at someone in a non-creepy, non-stalkerish way.

I am trying to imagine attempting your approach, and in every scenario where I play it out in my head, the guy ends up getting up and heading uncomfortably toward the door, making up a variety of interesting excuses on his way. What can I do that won't make the guy try to escape?
 
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@snail smile at him, flirt a little with your eyes, and he will probably stick around. or just tell him you're a former MOTM on PerC and watch him melt.
 

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@snail smile at him, flirt a little with your eyes, and he will probably stick around. or just tell him you're a former MOTM on PerC and watch him melt.
I don't know what "flirt a little with your eyes" means. I smile when I'm happy, or sometimes when I am nervous. Unfortunately, because of the shape of my downward-curving mouth, my smiles just make me look like I'm in pain.


Pained-looking smile example:




Any better ideas?
 

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This is a tough call because if you can't find anything interesting to talk about, nor her, well, snore.

When i was dating the first thing i would look for is common interest. As an ENFP even if there wasn't any ( random date ) i could always fill in the blanks and find something to talk about. Eventually it would lead off the beaten path to many other topics. Maybe you could ask her what she is interested in, they focus on that. I can see problems with two introverts trying to keep up in conversation, or lack of it. Personally that would get really old with me really fast. I enjoy interesting people, or people i can make open up by leading an interesting conversation. Anyway good luck, you may want to spend time with an extrovert to show you the ropes ;p
 

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As an E - I have the opposite problem and can't shut up. One suggestion that I have is that you actually bring up the fact that you realize both of you are having a mental block. If you are feeling pressure to say something, she is likely feeling the same way. By saying it out loud (and taking charge of the situation,) it takes the power of the "problem" away, takes some pressure off both of you and gives you something to talk about. So something along the lines of "It drives me crazy on a date when I'm on stage like this and have to perform! Now I know how the seals at Sea World feel." It likely will endear her to you. Dating is difficult. I personally hate the entire idea myself, but there is really no other way. You are trying to figure out if there is a future relationship, based on superficial interaction. ugh. When I'm faced with someone who isn't talking, I focus on open ended questions that most people can relate to in some way. I would say something like "So tell me about your first crush?" or "Tell me about your pets." or "Who are you closest to in your family?" Generally questions like that will lead to a natural conversation.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
What should one do if one is too shy to make direct eye contact, or if the other person is? I think that despite the difficulty, trying to get words out is still easier than trying to effectively stare at someone in a non-creepy, non-stalkerish way.

I am trying to imagine attempting your approach, and in every scenario where I play it out in my head, the guy ends up getting up and heading uncomfortably toward the door, making up a variety of interesting excuses on his way. What can I do that won't make the guy try to escape?
Agreed. That would head south quick, especially, if the relationship is not at a stage for that kind of romance. If you barely know one another other than at face value...romantically staring at someone is...odd.
 

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yeah...finding common interest is the only way, sorry. The easiest pickings are the weather, entertainment, sports, maybe philosophy. Make use of the props your given, like talking about the food, location, other people in the room, the view. Connect things together so if talking about another couple think of past experiences which are related. Its a game of fishing sometimes, gauge interest by if she leans forward, talks about it more extensively, if those signs are there you know you've hit something.

Of course you can solve this problem the INTP way, read books, there are plenty available. :proud:
 

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Haha you know, I was just about to put up my own thread about my own struggles very much like yours.

If you can't talk with the date you're with, then give them up. What's the point of keeping up a meaningless relationship? Seeing as you're an INTP, you must need reason and logic in everything you do, even relationships. In all honesty I think the best place to meet your dates would be over specific forums as these or in the place of profession (e.g if you're a neuroscientist, go chat up with chicks at the neuroscience lab). Got to realise that we INTPs aren't great at excelling in the social field. The chances of you randomly bumping into a chick who shares the same intense interests as you would be less than 1% (unless you look in the right places.)

That said, I myself have great difficulty even finding interest talking to other people. I suck at small talk, I can't just 'go with the flow', and I have an 'annoying' scientific approach to every human being I meet.

Probably why I have no real friends but cold hearted scientists. Oops.
 

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You need a better choice of dating venues if you're short of conversation. Typically a first date for me would be at the art institute in chicago. I could talk about the painting, a few of which I studied up on, and since I had gone there quite a few times, there was a lot of things to say. Movies aren't a good idea. Deep movies are too much for a first date, and you run out of stuff to talk about in a shallow movie.

If you talk with people in a bar easily, you could go there, if it feel comfortable, and alcohol tends to make things easier (I did coffee too). Some people just talk better with something in their hands.

Look up a list of silly interview questions. I find questions move conversations pretty well until you get to a topic you can go off on. Learn one or two long jokes that the situation may allow for. Those tend to loosen things up considerably.
 

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my friend told me about a tactic he is developing. He is an ENFP and a cool guy and everyone likes him so I don't know how well it would apply to someone who is introverted or would prefer not to make the first move. I am currently thinking about using this as well.

Basically, he walks up to a random girl that is about his age and asks if she goes to the college he does. He says something like, "Do you go to (insert school here)? I feel like I have seen you there before." If she did, then lucky break, if she doesn't, then he asks her where she does go to school and what major and carries on from there. Pretty straightforward.

Now that I think about it, this doesn't help you at all does it? This approach is more for meeting girls and not ones you already know, my bad. I have trouble carrying a conversation as well if it isn't something I have high regards for or the person isn't really into it. I like the above advice, where you point out the lack of conversation and point out the societal expectations of chit chat. If i ever do go on a conventional first date, I might use that. Of course, I'm also very picky about the girls I intend to get close to in a romantic sense.
 

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my friend told me about a tactic he is developing. He is an ENFP and a cool guy and everyone likes him so I don't know how well it would apply to someone who is introverted or would prefer not to make the first move. I am currently thinking about using this as well.

Basically, he walks up to a random girl that is about his age and asks if she goes to the college he does. He says something like, "Do you go to (insert school here)? I feel like I have seen you there before." If she did, then lucky break, if she doesn't, then he asks her where she does go to school and what major and carries on from there. Pretty straightforward.

Now that I think about it, this doesn't help you at all does it? This approach is more for meeting girls and not ones you already know, my bad. I have trouble carrying a conversation as well if it isn't something I have high regards for or the person isn't really into it. I like the above advice, where you point out the lack of conversation and point out the societal expectations of chit chat. If i ever do go on a conventional first date, I might use that. Of course, I'm also very picky about the girls I intend to get close to in a romantic sense.
I always feared this would be a problem for me when I was on a date but it never showed up.

In addition to the above topics, TV shows and movies are great topics. And anytime someone answers your question ask them why.

What is your favorite TV Show? Did you like it? What do you like or dislike it?

What is your job? How did you get started there?
Where did you go to school? Why did you pick that one? What did you major in? Why?

Avoid Yes or No question but questions that allow the person to elaborate.

Obviously interests and why the person likes them.

Just some ideas.
 

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I know INTPs are known for being....them, but I can't just starting talking about high-end philosophical conversations in that situation. I can't talk about extremely rational things, because it just doesn't fit.
Why not? If I don't have discussions like that on a first date, I consider it a failure. If either of us are not comfortable delving into deep discussion topics with each other, the relationship is over before it begins. I can't be with someone who isn't capable of those sorts of talks and I see no reason not to find that out early.

Obviously you still need to go through the usual "getting to know you" questions, but I have never seen a reason to avoid high-level discussions on a first date.
 

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I would say you should just move on after a date like that. If you're strained for conversation when you're just meeting, think about how boring things are going to be when the freshness and excitement of the relationship has worn off in a few years. If you're not good at making conversation with strangers, find a girl who is. I think it's pretty normal for on person to be the initiator in the relationship, and for the other to be the one that needs nudging. You can't have two initiators or two people that need nudging. Whenever I'm on a date I just go ahead and push the conversation to interesting topics, knowing that someone who is compatible with me will enjoy those more anyway. The people you should be dating will be pleased by conversation that interests YOU, regardless of whether you assume most people won't care about what you have to say. Someone will. So, don't worry, there's someone out there who you'll find a spark with and who you'll want to talk to all night. She just might take a little while to find.
 

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That said, I myself have great difficulty even finding interest talking to other people. I suck at small talk, I can't just 'go with the flow', and I have an 'annoying' scientific approach to every human being I meet.

Probably why I have no real friends but cold hearted scientists. Oops.
Will you be my cold-hearted scientist friend? I need more people to match me on that wavelength.
 
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