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15 Dating Problems Only Book Lovers Understand

03/28/2014 07:59 am ET
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Adoring books and literature has its perks. You're never, ever bored, you've got the whole proper grammar thing down, and you actually have better social skills than non-readers (yay, empathy!). Still, loving books can present a few unique conundrums for your love life: What do you do when your significant other loathes your favorite genre, or is uninterested in reading altogether? Even worse: What if he or she is also a bibliophile, but borrows your books, bends your spines and dog-ears your pages?

Here are 15 dating problems only avid readers understand:

1. It's hard to meet new people, because your nose is constantly in a book.

Coffee shops, subways, bars... no matter where you go, you look too preoccupied to seem approachable.

2. When someone does finally engage in conversation with you, it rarely meets your expectations.

On some level, you're aware that not every conversation can be a witty, perfectly-crafted arrangement of words. But that doesn't keep you from feeling disappointed with weird, fumbling pick-up lines.

3. The same applies to texts and e-mails; one-line responses to your wordy proclamations just don't cut it.

"Sounds cool" is not an adequate response to your gushy explanation of why the Gone Girl ending is totally problematic.

4. You overanalyze every word your significant other says, looking for meaning where there is none.

"So, when you say 'fine,' do you mean fine as in good, or fine as in absolutely not fine?"

5. When you finally see someone's place for the first time, you're overcome with anxiety.

What if their shelves are stocked with tasteful yet never-read art books? Or worse, what if they have no books at all?

6. Book preferences can be deal-breakers, even if someone's a great match otherwise.

He's kind, he's smart, he's funny... and his favorite book is Atlas Shrugged. Head for the hills!

7. On the other hand, bookishness can blind you to loads of blatant flaws.

But... he likes Virginia Woolf! He gets me.

8. Neglecting to read a recommended book is as bad as forgetting a birthday.

You can overlook a difference in taste, but until they've gotten to know your favorite characters, can they really understand you?

9. But borrowing a book without asking is a big no-no too.

"So, what you're telling me is, you took the clothbound, hardcover copy of my favorite book outside? Like, outside outside?"

10. Sometimes, all you want to do is read.

Dinner and a movie is nice and all, but curling up on the couch together with your books is usually ideal.

11. And reading isn't exactly a group activity.

Unless you're into reading out loud, which can be romantic in its own right, reading time isn't quite the same bonding experience as, say, watching "House of Cards" together.

12. Sometimes you get so caught up in what you're reading that you project your character analysis onto other people.

"You're acting like a Wickham and I really need you to be acting like a Darcy."

13. You expect everything to be resolved neatly and conclusively.

"This abrupt break-up doesn't really fit with the tone of the rest of our relationship. Let's revise?"

14. Break-ups can feel like postwar negotiations, and divvying up your bookshelf can be complete hell.

"I may be responsible for the water damage on your first edition, but you are terrible, so let's call it even."

15. How, exactly, are you supposed to balance dating with the precious time you need to spend with all of the wonderful authors on your to-read list?

"I can't tonight... I've got a date with Henry James."

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