Perhaps the most valuable think to look for when you are dating someone new is a sense of humor. And when times are difficult in a relationship having your own sense of humor is a life saver. The sort of humor we are talking about is called affiliative humor. It is the ability to enjoy the humor of others as well as to tell jokes, share funny stories and generally brighten everyone’s day. Making jokes at the expense of others, putting yourself down and using humor to cover up problems you are not dealing are not good for relationships. True humor may be the finest form of communication. Keep a sense of humor when dating and as your relationship evolves.
I Never Would Have Survived
An old lady my acquaintance got married just before the start of the Great Depression. She talked about burning corn cobs in a stove in the office because corn was cheaper than coal. A dollar a day was a fair wage for a working man. And the middle of the country turned into the Dust Bowl. My friend said that when you saw the dark cloud on the horizon you hurried out to take the clothes off the clothesline before the dust made them dirty again. She said, “I would never have survived without a sense of humor.” When Prohibition made booze illegal a family could still make wine at home in small quantities. She and her husband made dandelion wine and put the bottles to ferment on the steps going down into the cellar. My friend was concerned what people would think if they saw the wine, it being prohibition and all. “What if there is a fire? What will the firemen do,” she asked her husband. “They will drink the wine,” he responded. Keep a sense of humor when dating and in your life and troubles remain in perspective.
Laugh or Cry
In the terrible days of the Civil War President Lincoln was known to tell lots of funny stories and jokes. When called to task for his sense of humor when the nation was a war he said, “I laugh so that I will not cry.” Keep a sense of humor so that life does not overwhelm you. Even the Civil War came to an end. Life’s troubles have a way of working themselves out. Humor gives us perspective.
Better Humor than Wealth or Power
What will make you happy in life? Do you want money? Do you want power? Do you want to enjoy your interactions with the person whom you love? A happy relationship is more likely to come from a good sense of humor than from constant planning and striving.
Keeping Things in Perspective
Maybe you had a hot first date and now are wondering why the two of you are not connecting beyond the bedroom. There are times when great lovers do not make great friends, companions or spouses. Keep a sense of humor when dating and a sense of perspective. There is nothing wrong with enjoying a sexual relationship and not feeling guilty that it is not going anywhere else.