Well that was kind of awkward.
November 24, 2011 4:36 PM   Subscribe

She accepted me as a facebook friend after a conversation. I sent a lame message. What do I do now?

Context: the last time I was really single, the domain name OKCupid.com was still available. (It was registered in early 2003.) So, it's been a while since I've had to "chat up" women and etc.

The other day at a small get together, I met a lady. I chatted her up with the connection being that I recognized from her clothing that we had the same employer at one point. (Ah, Silicon Valley.)

We talked for a little bit - we indeed had the same former employer and actually live somewhat near each other, but then we went separate ways as she knew a few people there - and I really didn't know anyone.

Afterwards, I facebook friend requested her - she accepted. Neat. But... uh... I couldn't figure out what to do after that. A female friend had just recently advised that I should handle meeting women just like I met anyone else - instead of thinking about them as "potentials."

Ok, so I sent her a fb message that basically said "Good meeting you. You new work is super cool. Happy thanksgiving."

But in reality, what I wanted to say was "Hey would you be interested in meeting up for dinner next Friday?" (except that thanksgiving is sort of in the way.)

No response. Nor would I expect one since I didn't really ask any questions.

Did I screw this up?

What should I do next?
posted by veryblue1 to Human Relations (26 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Wait. People have different paces for things that they do on the internet. Give it a few days, and then maybe write again. Most likely, she'll write something back to you and it'll be less awkward.

If a week or so passes and she doesn't reply, see if she has regular activity on Facebook. If so, you can engage again, but for now...wait.

And maybe breathe. Breathing is good, too.
posted by xingcat at 4:43 PM on November 24, 2011 [6 favorites]

Well, no, you didn't screw this up. She might not be responding because, you know, it's Thanksgiving and maybe she's busy. Or maybe you're not a high priority. Or whatever. Your next move is to wait for a response. Give it a few days, maybe a week. If she hasn't responded, ask her a question. Or ask her for coffee. (I wouldn't ask her to dinner unless you are fairly certain she's single. And some women might find that a bit too forward from a stranger.)

Relax. It's just as hard for those of us in the trenches daily.
posted by sm1tten at 4:45 PM on November 24, 2011 [5 favorites]

You're totally overthinking this. The initial message you sent was perfectly appropriate given the minimal amount of conversation you'd had beforehand. Plus, it's open ended enough that it allows her the chance to respond normally. Let her do that and see how things flow from there. You haven't screwed up at all.
posted by Rewind at 4:46 PM on November 24, 2011 [9 favorites]

I don't think you screwed it up. There is a lot of "Happy Thanksgiving" going around, and with everyone visiting family, it's not a great time for dating anyway.

I think the window is still as open as it ever was to asking her out.

Disclaimer: I'm not great at this either, but next step (not during Thanksgiving), I'd suggest telling her that you would like to take her out on a date. Have a few date ideas in mind (eg. coffee at X, food at Y, mutual-interest-event at Z) in case she says yes, 'cos it doesn't reflect well to ask someone out and then not have any clue what to suggest, and you can pick the plan that seems most appropriate to the chemistry/vibe you're getting during the conversation.

Assuming you won't likely run into each other again, I think chat is better than email, but do the pleasantries and get a response before saying anything that matters so you know you're actually chatting, not sending messages to a window in the background :)
posted by -harlequin- at 4:54 PM on November 24, 2011

When did you send this original message? Was it very recently? She's probably having that happy Thanksgiving you wished her and will read her Facebook later. I think your note was just fine.
posted by arcticwoman at 4:54 PM on November 24, 2011

I don't think that's weird at all. I think your open-ended message is better than an outright invitation to dinner, since you just recently met. Do you chat in facebook? Maybe next time you see her online you could start a chat conversation. That's a good way to get to know her..
posted by costanza at 4:55 PM on November 24, 2011

It's fine. She'll reply if she wants to. Your message was better than asking a question, which can feel like an imposition or an interview.
posted by The corpse in the library at 5:03 PM on November 24, 2011 [6 favorites]

Nope, that was perfect. Very low-pressure. The fact that you friended her at all signals interest. See what she says in response, and as long as she doesn't drop any obvious references to her love life, feel free to ask her out at that point.
posted by elizeh at 5:05 PM on November 24, 2011

You're good.

Remember that Seinfeld where George doesn't get a call back from the girl for days, so he leaves messages of ever-escalating hostility under he is screaming insults at her- and then it turns out she was out of town and couldn't get her messages?

Don't do that. It's Thanksgiving!! She's probably traveling or caught up in family stuff.
posted by drjimmy11 at 5:26 PM on November 24, 2011 [2 favorites]

You did fine. You will have plenty of opportunity to touch base with her later. This is the way things go, plus it is the holiday.

For what its worth, I am in a similar boat (havent been single in many years) and keeping things low pressure, low key is the way to go. I find its much easier without coming across desperate.
posted by handbanana at 5:28 PM on November 24, 2011

Best answer: Yes to all the above. You're doing fine so far. Wait a bit, and then ask her out for "a coffee or a drink sometime", and don't freak out if she's not interested, already taken, or whatever.
posted by jrochest at 5:41 PM on November 24, 2011

There is always, of course, the telephone.
posted by KokuRyu at 5:54 PM on November 24, 2011

I wish I had an answer for you as I had the same basic situation happen twice.

Talked really well at an event, felt a connection, facebook messaged asking if they'd like to do something. My wrinkle is they both were the ones to friend request me but never responded to the actual message.

I tell you that to say you're not alone. Facebook is just... weird.

So I've given up on facebook as a method of follow up contacting anyone you're interested in. Best to ask for the number on your way out the door!
posted by OnTheLastCastle at 6:11 PM on November 24, 2011

Wow, OK. Maybe I just run in different Facebook friend groups than you, but a few things:

1. That was not a weird message. The one you wanted to send would've been the weird message. I mean, think about it -- that'd basically entail asking someone out over Facebook right after friending them. Weird, right? Super weird. You didn't screw up, you did the right thing.

2. As far as why she hasn't answered? People've said the holidays, yeah, but I think it's something else -- some people build up huge backlogs of Facebook messages, notifications, etc. that they don't get to for ages. Maybe that's her. Maybe it's not. You won't know! Which brings me to:

3. Facebook really isn't the greatest conduit for this sort of thing. You need to be at the point of off-Facebook contact before asking someone out is really going to feel natural. How you get to that point depends entirely on your individual situation; there's no set of steps you can follow. But seriously -- Facebook is a tool designed by Zuckerberg to harvest personal information. It's not designed to make socializing any easier or more natural. It's just... there. And stressing over it leads nowhere useful.
posted by dekathelon at 6:47 PM on November 24, 2011 [1 favorite]

Your message was great! Don't worry...(actually, I think it was perfect....warm and friendly and not too pushy). Next move (whether she answers via facebook or not) call her to ask to meet for coffee!
posted by naplesyellow at 7:09 PM on November 24, 2011

Nthing dekathelon. I am the kind of person that gets a huge number of Facebook notifications. I could easily miss one and never know it, even if it is important.

Is her email listed on Facebook? You may want to send her a single email if she doesn't respond to your message in a few days, just in case. Not to ask her out (no need to move too fast and look creepy/desperate), just to say "nice to have met you, I enjoyed our chat".
posted by Shouraku at 7:33 PM on November 24, 2011

Bah. You're overthinking. Giver her a week and then send her a note saying you'd love to chat again, can you buy her a beer/coffee. Frankly, it's easier to just be direct and friendly. Give her a chance to say no directly. If you've been in a relationship since 2003, and she's near your age- you'll have a much better chance of getting a date if you ask for one.
posted by Blisterlips at 7:52 PM on November 24, 2011

Message wasn't lame but a bit conclusive. Hi thanks bye!

Screw facebook, call her. Or message asking her out somewhere. Or whatever. Don't fret, you'll meet a million people in your lifetime and this could go somewhere, or not. Stay cool, see how it goes, take it offline, have as much fun as you can. Try again with 20 different people if it keeps falling flat.

Make sure you have fun, don't put anyone on a pedestal and rock on friend.
posted by nozendo at 8:14 PM on November 24, 2011

Your message was totally good.

Facebook, on the other hand, sucks. Here's something you might not know: Facebook has a kind of spam folder called "Other" that is a sub-directory of Messages. Under FAVOURITES in the left column, there's News Feed, Messages, and Events; if I click Messages, it opens my mailbox, but also, the sub-directory Other appears. When I first discovered this recently, there were 250 unread messages in it. Mostly spam, but also three messages from real people who were sending me messages for the first time.

Possibly you already knew this, but it surprised the hell out of me and everyone I have told it to since. I mention it because in my Other folder, I found a message from an old friend who friended me a while ago. I friended him back, and posted a little chipper something on his wall. Then nothing. Total radio silence. I felt like you do! Did I say something wrong? Does he regret re-connecting? WHAT DO I DO NOW?? Then last week I find a really lovely three month old message from him in this @#$!&* secret spam folder. I sent back an apology and explanation and, now that I am not hearing back from him, am left to wonder if he has totally written me off, or if I'm in his secret spam folder. See above re: what do I do now!?

But back to your message, really, it's the message I would want to get from someone I had just met at a party. I wouldn't worry about a non-response. I'd recommend interacting with her on FB a little in the next week, comment on a post, share a link, whatever. I think that's the equivalent of small talk. Then if she responds to you, suggest a coffee date and arrange it over the phone.
posted by looli at 8:15 PM on November 24, 2011 [3 favorites]

To provide context to the braggadocio: I was single for a while and being all very nervous about interactions and facebook and etc. All went quite horribly, good for a laugh, eventually met my current partner by walking up and introducing myself in a shopping centre carpark. None of this makes any sense, or works, it just happens.

Again, have fun! Fun fun fun. Then see how it turns out.
posted by nozendo at 8:20 PM on November 24, 2011 [1 favorite]

Perfect kind of message. Now start engaging conversation with OTHER women. Try not to fixate on this one too much. Keep in touch, have things going on in your life...break away sometime down the road for a coffee. Play it cool, you've done so already so keep it up and give her the gift of missing your conversation. Whatever happens...friendship...romantic interest...will happen naturally.
posted by samsara at 9:21 PM on November 24, 2011 [2 favorites]

This is pretty much how my last boyfriend and I got together. The sequence of events was: met at an event; I added him on FB; he accepted the request; he posted a response to something I posted on my wall (very casually); I responded to that and we went back and forth for a while; he continued the conversation via Facebook message; went back and forth; we switched to email and then eventually he asked me out. Until this point everything was something you could say to a friend, except that we were both responding perhaps more eagerly than one would with someone one was only interested in being friends with.
posted by peacheater at 6:19 AM on November 25, 2011

Sounds fine to me.

Just wait a few days for the holiday frenzy to die down, then send her another message asking her out.

Possible suggestion, instead of talking about "meeting up for dinner" say "I'd like to take you out to dinner", or even "would you like to come on a dinner date with me", just to be clear that it's an actual date and not just interest in her work or platonic friendship.
posted by TheophileEscargot at 7:46 AM on November 25, 2011

You actually sent her the most appropriate message possible. Asking her out as soon as she friended you would have been weird. You will be more successful in dating when you understand this (meaning your friend is completely correct).

So, not awkward, you did well, call her and ask her out in a few days after she has recovered from the holiday. Tuesday or Wednesday would be nice.
posted by Vaike at 8:59 AM on November 25, 2011

I find I miss a lot of messages on FB. Not sure why. But, upshot of it is I personally would not FB message something important, or something you have an emotional investment in. Even plain old email is more reliable and nothing beats actually talking to the person.
posted by edgeways at 12:16 PM on November 25, 2011

I am a woman who gets hit on often. The facebook add on for me, just means I'm not frightened or repulsed by the guy. Your message was fine but if she isn't responding then then there is a good chance that she isn't that into you, yet.

I've had men that have been 'maybes' until they facebooked me to death. They go through and like every post I make and many of my pictures, just kind of lurking, without asking me out. It is a huge turn off. Those 'maybes' quickly become no ways.

Women like confident men. Be direct. If your only contact with her is through facebook (huge mistake, by the way, always get a phone number) then message her asking if you can call her. If she gave you her number, then call her. Don't hint around, don't try to shield yourself from rejection, man up and ask her out, by phone, not facebook.

If you are really into her and you think she might be into you, and she told you where she works, and you don't have her number, send her flowers with a note asking her out. If she isn't available, every woman in her office will want to meet you. :)

Good luck. Try not to think about things too much. Know what you want and ask for it directly. If she says no, respect that. If she says yes, congratulations.
posted by myselfasme at 3:21 PM on November 25, 2011 [2 favorites]

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