An Inside Look at Self-Disclosure

What else does research reveal about self-disclosure? Here are some interesting findings to think about:

• Women typically disclose more than men. Some men find it difficult to reveal information about themselves and their relationships. If you are a woman dating a man, don’t expect your date to
tell you quite as much as you may be telling him. If you are a man dating a woman, don’t be surprised when she presses you for more information than you care to reveal.

• Self-disclosure is usually reciprocal. There is an unspoken understanding in almost every relationship: if one person shares something extremely personal, then the other should respond at the
same level of intimacy. Relationship researchers call this the “norm of reciprocity in disclosure.” So on the first few dates, if you want the relationship to continue to develop, reveal personal information
slowly, so your date won’t feel too pressured to respond with his or her personal details. If you find that your date is revealing too much too soon, and you like this person, instead of clamming up, be honest and tell your date: “I appreciate that you’re so open with me, but I’m just not as comfortable sharing personal information this soon. Give me a bit more time, though, and I will.”

• Attraction develops and grows with everything you disclose. Studies show that if you disclose personal information gradually over time, the other person’s attraction and positive feelings
about you will increase, too. You can also use this information to gauge whether the relationship is going anywhere or getting more serious. If your partner’s information becomes more personal
as time goes on, it’s a clear sign that the relationship is deepening and growing stronger. If your partner is holding back personal information, you may have hit a stumbling block.


Not sure how to handle a first date? Need some first-date conversation starters? I’ll cover more do’s and don’ts of first dates, along with some simple tips that will turn great first dates into second
ones, later in previous post.

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