There is nothing quite like someone saying too much, too soon. At root, it is a total turn-off. What are the ways that people overshare? All of them have to do with emotional needs, and you’ll see what I mean in a moment. Do people know they’re oversharing when they’re doing it? Do they realize that they are revealing too much to someone they don’t really know well, or are they just caught up in the moment?
Men and women who overshare early in dating do it out of anxiety. They may be anxious about many different things, but they are anxious nonetheless. Your date may feel anxious about whether you will be attracted to them; whether you will think they are successful enough; whether you think they are interesting enough; and so on. Even though they may not seem anxious when you are with them, trust me: they are anxious under the surface.
Most men and women who overshare are aware that they are getting deep quickly, but they want to seal the deal with you and they do this by forcing emotional intimacy that really shouldn’t be there early in a relationship. They try to concretize a connection with you, and they believe that revealing a lot very early will make you want to get closer to them and will make your connection or relationship stronger.
In essence, you can probably read between the lines and guess what my ultimate position on the issue is. If you start dating someone and they overshare in the first couple weeks of the relationship, you should probably move on and look for someone who uses more caution and better emotional judgment.
If your new date overshares in any of the following ways, beware…
Oversharing about past relationships
Early in dating, you should reveal very little about your past relationships. Sharing details about what your ex did or why the relationship ended is way too much, too soon. People who overshare about an ex or exes come across as defensive, critical, or angry. Most of all, they come across as if they’re still hung up on or preoccupied with that situation. When you start a relationship, you want to feel like you and the person you’re with are starting fresh. Oversharing about an ex smears the past all over the present.
Oversharing about finances
Sharing too many details about how much money you earn or have in the bank should be avoided early in dating. Sharing details about the kind of car you drive, house you have or vacations you take should be avoided, too. When healthy men and women go on a date, they don’t want to feel like they are with someone who feels the need to prove what their financial situation is. If you stay together, there is plenty of time to get to know each other’s financial circumstances. Focus on emotionally connecting instead.
Oversharing about the personal lives of close friends or family members
Oversharing about the details of someone else’s life – someone who is close to you and whom your date could potentially meet in the future – shows poor boundaries and a lack of respect for the privacy of that individual. If the two of you commit to a serious relationship, there will be plenty of opportunities to talk about your friends and family members. Rushing things and revealing information that is not your own comes across as gossipy and critical, and healthy individuals won’t feel comfortable listening to such private details. Most of all, if you overshare about someone else early in the relationship, your date will understandably wonder, what would he say about me when I’m not here? Part of being an adult involves having good boundaries and knowing when the right time is to get extremely personal.
On a date, it should only feel like there are two people in the room: the two of you! If you spend time talking about other people on your dates, you’re not doing what you should be: focusing on getting to know each other better. Remember, if it works out between the two of you, you will have many years ahead to get acquainted with everyone in your date’s life!
About the Author:
Dr. Seth is a licensed clinical psychologist, author, Psychology Today blogger, and TV guest expert. He practices in Los Angeles and treats a wide range of issues and disorders and specializes in relationships, parenting, and addiction. He has had extensive training in conducting couples therapy and is the author of Dr. Seth’s Love Prescription: Overcome Relationship Repetition Syndrome and Find the Love You Deserve