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FUTURE-TALK

Have you ever noticed in a brand new relationship how men are inclined to make future-talk?

“I can’t wait for you to meet my buddies, you will see,…”

“When we go on vacation together…”

“Next Christmas we will…”

“I can’t wait to take you in my Tiger Moth aeroplane…”

“I know about this rustic lodge I want to take you to see…”

“When we retire, we are going to open a guest house…”

“It would be great if we can synchronize our gym times in future …”

“Why don’t I just stock up your fridge with my favourite brand of beer, so I have a stock when I come to visit next time…”

“Come Summer, I will fix that broken fence for you…”

“Tell me which light fittings you prefer, you may be living here one day…”

Then, as they see more of each other and things get more intimate, he accuses her for having expectations and he leaves.

I will use the analogy of a man and a woman going grocery shopping to explain this topic. As they stroll along in the aisles, pushing the shopping cart, he takes a condiment from the shelf. “This is nice,” he says and places it in the cart. “This too,” he says and packs another item into the cart. “Let’s get this as well” he adds. So he fills the shopping cart to the brim with groceries they will be eating that night. His enthusiasm is contagious and she adds an item or two.

Eventually when they reach the check-out till and it is time for him to pay, he walks away leaving her with the stocked cart. She stands with a tear streaked face, holding a can of beans in her hand. “Remember when he picked this up and we fantasized about the baked beans breakfast,” she reminisces. “And this packet of spaghetti, he promised to teach me his grandmother’s recipe.”

Dear Woman, please do not regurgitate each “future-talk grocery item” he mentioned. Just leave the cart or push it over the hill and walk away. Don’t even try to pay the bill for someone else’s shopping cart. He is shopping with another woman already, anyway.

He did not verbalise a promise, but he infers a future together that he has no intention of honouring and then he still has the gall of accusing her of having expectations – who created those expectations?

I enquired from the men if they were aware that their future-talk created expectations, which they had no intention of keeping and the resounding answer was: “Yes, I did not do it intentionally to mislead her, but yes in all new relationships, I make future-talk.”

They explained that when they refer to future activities, at that moment they do actually foresee themselves with the girl, but as soon as she acts as if they are in a relationship, the men withdraw and feel trapped.

Perhaps men should take accountability for creating expectations, and perhaps women should take future-talk with a pinch of salt. His actions may prove more than his words.

Tell us what you think.

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