That being said, there’s still a time and a place for raw honesty. In my time as a matchmaker, countless clients have told me how they’d either scared someone off or themselves had been scared off because of oversharing. Divulging sensitive, highly personal information implies trust and emotional intimacy, but those qualities can’t be contrived or manufactured in a relationship. They take time to blossom, organically—they cannot be forced. And for some people, oversharing comes across as an attempt to artificially accelerate emotional intimacy.
Likewise, you need to look out for yourself. How well do you know this person? If you’re only one month and a handful of dates in, is this the time to be quite so vulnerable? And is too early to risk overwhelming your new partner with personal information they may not be ready for?
It can be a fine line to walk, especially if you’ve had bad experiences in the past with oversharing, having been on either the giving or receiving end. That’s why today I’m exploring 3 things to consider before opening up to your new partner.
Before diving in, consider what you’re expecting from this conversation, and indeed what you actually want out of it. Are you looking for validation? To build intimacy? Either way, do you know this person well enough yet to know they’ll give you the space and response you seek? Are you hoping for them to share in return?
Moreover, what if the interaction disappoints you? Let’s say you go into the conversation hopeful it will pave the way to greater trust and emotional intimacy. But if you don’t feel satisfied with how the conversation turns out, will you feel able to regroup and give it another go, or will you feel hurt and let down?
It’s important to consider whether you’re projecting too much hope onto the other person. There’s a myriad of reasons they may not respond in the way you want, and they don’t all mean you’re not right for each other or that they aren’t someone with great empathy. For instance, depending on the nature of the information you disclose, they may be simply lost for words, unable to articulate any response at all. Yet perhaps that’s because they already care about you enough that the information has had a sizeable impact on them, and they themselves need to recalibrate.
Take a step back and consider the circumstances. Especially if you’ve decided to share on the spur of the moment, will the conversation be relevant—and more importantly, appropriate—for where you are at present? Or do you actually need more space, fewer distractions, more privacy? Are you divulging at a time that allows for as long a followup conversation as you’ll need? And think about your partner’s needs, too: do they have the emotional availability for this right now, or have they just got to the restaurant after a rough day at work?
Of course there will never be a ‘good’ time for a difficult conversation. But by ensuring the environment is suitable and that you’ll both have as long as you need to talk things through, you can at least make sure there are no external factors affecting the quality of the conversation.
You may be enjoying a burgeoning romance, but in this moment would your new partner actually be a willing participant in the tricky conversation you’d like to broach? What is their body language saying? Are they physically and emotionally engaged? Have they demonstrated they want to hear more, given you the space to expand? Have they even twigged without you having said anything that there’s something on your mind?
While you deserve to be listened to, you don’t want to mar the conversation by getting into it at a time when your partner isn’t receptive. Maybe they’ve had a bad day; maybe they have a lot going on themselves at the moment. That’s not to negate the importance of what you want to talk about, but it does mean they may be far more receptive soon rather than now. If that’s the impression you get, wait it out. You’ll find you have a far more fruitful conversation when your partner is receptive and able to give you their full support and attention. And you’ll forge a closer and more trusting dynamic as a result.
Maclynn is a boutique, multi-award-winning introductions agency with offices in New York, New Jersey, California and London. We’re world-renowned for bringing together highly compatible singles within our vast network of attractive, intelligent professionals, and our matchmakers are relationship experts in their own right. Get in touch today, and prepare for genuinely meaningful dating—just like you deserve.