Saturday, 9 March 2013

The 7 Reasons Your Friends Won't Set You Up

I was involved in a hilarious debate last night about friends and match-making. It resulted in a definitive list, which I figured I should turn into a blog, naturally. So, to all you single people out there, here are The 7 Reasons Your Friends Won’t Set You Up…

According to Wikibooks, friends are the primary introducers of couples of all types (35-40%) and a study titled How Couples Meet & Stay Together found it’s the No.1 way, even above meeting at work. The average across all studies is 25%, or 1 in 4 couples are introduced by a mutual friend.

A lot of these mutual-friend-intros would of course be ‘incidental’ vs specifically set up. I myself have several marriages under my belt via incidentally introducing people (meeting simply because they both hang out with you), and there are 3 new little people in the world because of these introductions I’ve made. Awww, shucks... :)

I am also however an avid matchmaker, and love nothing more than getting people together. Call me an old romantic. Sometimes I tell them I have someone in mind for them, but often I just maneuver a scenario where they will be in the same room together (with only one or neither of them knowing). I then make the introduction and WALK AWAY. The rest is completely up to them. How easy is that?? Little effort required, and possibly a happy ever after.

So it begs the question: if you’re single and looking, why aren’t more of your friends doing this for you, actively? They love you, right? They want you to be happy, don’t they?
Don’t they?

I know for certain no one is actively doing it for me and I’ve even had the cahunas to ask! Oh, but they wax lyrical about how they’d love to and are planning to and wow they have this amazing guy for me…but alas, it never actually happens. So, if you’ve been single for a while and wanting to meet someone, I bet you’ve either asked your friends *would you kindly mind ever so much pretty please introduce me to someone nice?* (or at least you’ve toyed with asking) – and then wondered why they don’t? Here’s why…

1. They are too lazy/too busy
While they may have the best intentions, your friends most likely simply can’t be bothered. Sorry to be so frank. (See my method above how easy it can be, and cue me rolling my eyes). Being too busy is another excuse and one friend agreed, saying he has a busy life and his leisure time is focused on time with his own partner. Um, thanks. I’m so happy you’re happy!! No I am, really…

2. ‘But I don’t know anyone right for you’
This is akin to laziness and means they are not thinking outside the square. They are thinking about their immediate social circle (who you probably know anyway) and not that fab girl at work or that great guy who they chat to at the gym. Firstly consider that on average, people maintain 150 significant social relationships simultaneously - and that the average person meets 10,000 people in their lifetime. Secondly, this excuse suggests your friend thinks they know exactly what you’re looking for. Yes, they may know you inside & out, but chemistry is a magical thing. Two people either have it or they don’t, despite having everything or nothing in common. This should not be a 3rd person’s call.

NOTE: The happiest couple I’ve ever introduced (not on purpose) I NEVER would have put together, ever. After more than a decade they are still like love-sick puppies. I most likely made the assumption that because she was 5 years older than him that they weren’t a ‘match’. How old-fashioned a notion is that?? It was a long time ago, and I never make ANY assumptions any more.

3. ‘But I REALLY don’t know anyone right for you and I’ll prove it!’
One friend set out to ‘prove’ he didn’t know anyone for me by scrolling through his entire phone, calling out the reasons, and I quote him exactly here: taken – player – taken – douchebag – taken – gay – player – player – player – only likes 25 yr olds – player – gay – player – player – only likes 18 yr olds. And so forth. Doesn’t bode well for the single ladies of Sydney does it? But like Point 2, it perhaps shows a lack of creativity and thinking beyond the obvious inner circle. Then again, it may be pertinent to add that he does live in Bondi…perhaps every circle he has is populated by these types ;)

4. ‘But I don’t know anyone good enough for you’
Exactly the above points, but with an injection of flattery!

5. ‘It could all turn to custard so NO WAY’
You’re picturing romance and kittens, while your friend has already fast-forwarded to a psychotic break up where he/she is dragged screaming into the centre of it all bleeding from the ears at having to listen to you both. Then, possibly losing one friend or both of you. This reason does have its merits. But it’s also kinda selfish, and a little too ‘I like my life safe & wrapped in cotton wool’ for me. Kick your friend up the arse, tell them you’re not in high school anymore and to hook a sistah up. Also, perhaps suggest how wonderful it would be to be thanked in front of a swooning loved-up wedding congregation (because it IS). Appeal to their ego and desire for credit/glory if you have to.

6. They don’t want to be judged.
This is an interesting one. If someone is setting you up, they are in effect putting themselves up for judgement if you find their suggestion unattractive/wacky/boring/a hideous toad. One male friend said – ‘Absolutely. I set a girlfriend up with someone I thought she’d like and she didn’t, and I never heard the end of it. "You don’t know me at all, I can’t believe you think I would lower my standards THAT low, you clearly don’t think I’m pretty if you think I’d date him blah blah blah". Needless to say he is off match-making for life. Bitch is ruining it for all of us... (tongue firmly in cheek here).

Ah…the most controversial reason of all. And one that very few people would admit to, except a couple of friends have accidentally suggested it to me. One girlfriend even said to me over dinner the other night, ‘I love seeing you when my boyfriend is away! You’re the only one of my girlfriends who is single – I can always go to a party or dinner with you, yay!’ Um…thanks. Always a pleasure to oblige you… ;) No, really – us single types do serve a significant purpose in our perpetually coupled friends lives. Bridget Jones would refer to us making the 'smug marrieds' feel even better about themselves. But it's often because we are the social ones, tend to make our own fun and are out and about, footloose and fancy free. This is particularly compared to coupled friends with kids who when they DO want to go wild, pick YOU to do it with. How pesky would it be if their wild, fun, AVAILABLE friend was suddenly coupled up in domestic bliss and not free to play with them. Oh, the horror…


8. They say they never go out because they have kids, they never meet anyone new, they actually don't know ANYONE.
Yet they have hundreds of Facebook friends...funny huh?

9. They themselves are looking too

Ever heard of Trash or Treasure? I've set several guy friends up when I've been single myself. Ex-boyfriends, platonic friends, guys I think are fantastic but feel no romantic connection with. Who knows, if you do a single friend a favour they just might do one back for you.

10. Maybe they don't think you're worthy of setting up...
Cue Kasey Chambers 'Am I not pretty enough...'. And do you remember that Sex & The City episode where Miranda is with her psychiatrist, upset about being the girls? The foursome were discussing having a hypothetical lesbian experience, and noone chose her. She laments: 'If your friends won't sleep with you, who will?' Jokes aside, if your friends don't find you worthy of love and romance perhaps it's time to get some new friends... anyone up for the challenge of setting me up? ;)

xxx Tiff


  1. some confronting points - espcially no 10 !

  2. So, so happy to have come across this post this morning. I have been single since, eerm, well since I was born. And through the years, I have asked my friends to set me up to no avail. It was also one of the reasons why I left London, i.e all areas of my life had become stagnant. Now i'm in Berlin, i have asked 2 mates to help a sistah out: one obliged by inviting me to an exhibition a mate of hers was holding (see, simple!!), the other gave the ol' cock & bull story of knowing 'no one', though i seemed to remember going to a bday party of hers and it was swimming with men!! Anyhoo, I am about to do to the rounds again and ask my Berlin mates to get their Cupid bow ready, we'll see...but I agree whole heartedly with your above points and good on you for being so caring and setting your mates up! I wish there were more girls (and boys) like you out there!

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  4. This is making me really reconsider who I hang around with.


  5. What I hate is when my friends tell me that I'll meet someone better and what's the rush, but how can I meet someone if you won't set me up!