Modern dating culture is not set up for introverts.

You see, we introverts need more time to establish trust and connection in a relationship. We’re pretty selective about who we let into our inner circle. We’re downright scrupulous about who we let into our heart.

And our bedroom …

We’d like to keep that a VIP sacred space, too. Studies have shown that introverts have fewer sexual partners than extroverts. I suspect that we’d have even fewer horizontal mambo partners if there weren’t so much pressure to have sex early on.

In our society there is this underlying belief that if a date is going well it should inevitably lead to sex. If not on the first date, at least by the third or fourth date.

For introverts, the idea of being sexually intimate with someone we just met can be stressful to say the least.

Of course, there are introverts who have one-night stands. If that floats your boat, all the more power to you. But for many introverts, this is too much, too soon.

Sexual assumptions

Female introverts, in particular, are frustrated by the pressure for early physical intimacy. I want to clarify that I’m not talking about rape, or even verbal pressure to have sex. I’m talking about unspoken assumptions about what is normal and expected.

The norms of dating are pretty backwards. Sexual intimacy often comes before emotional intimacy. Sometimes there is no emotional connection at all. Just sex.

Disney lied to us

As a 30-year old introverted female whose romantic ideals were largely influenced by The Little Mermaid, I find modern day courtship to be lacking.

Upon doing a little romantic audit, I realized that most of my intimate relationships were preceded by friendship, or at least a more drawn-out courtship.

Sure, I’ve had my whirlwind romances that peaked and fizzled within the span of one week. But overall, I prefer the slow bloom approach to romance over the wham-bam-let’s-get-naked-on-the –first-date approach.

What about you? What’s your preference when it comes to dating? Slow bloom or wham bam – or something in between? I’d love to hear your thoughts and experiences.