German men dating
Basically, men are afraid to make fools of themselves, because that’s precisely the risk that flirting entails, and Germans don’t go in for risks.
They like to do things properly and thoroughly, not spontaneously or irrationally.
After a first date with an American classmate, she was genuinely flabbergasted by his expectations of sleeping with her afterwards.
Keep in mind however, that there are exceptions to every rule; age, social status and local customs come into play as well as changing attitudes stemming from feminist influences.
For now, however, here are some basics to get you started.
For, as it turns out, every girl I know in this city has suffered the same disinterest. After all, my standards are based on the charming yet mostly hopeless British / Irish culture, where flirting mostly consists of clumsily sidling up to a girl at the bar and stuttering something incomprehensible, or later on, perhaps, drunkenly lunging at her on the dance floor.
Fiona*, who’s been living here for 2 years, wasn’t at all surprised when I suggested that it was difficult to get to know men in Berlin: “Oh absolutely, you have to be really pushy here – German men never make the first move.” And Carola told me that in all her life, she had never once been chatted up by a German man: she is a native Berliner. My flirtatious encounters to date have been mostly unmemorable and rarely romantic.
It seems the definition of flirting auf Deutsch is still limited to a stony-faced stare from across the room. Partly it’s about conforming to standards: getting a wolf whistle as you walked down Unter den Linden would be a bit much.