The Social Contract on the Dance Floor

Yes, women want equality. Nobody said that meant killing chivalry. Good old-fashioned manners go a long way in social situations, no matter what your age or philosophy.

There are a few unspoken rules that make social contact with strangers at dance events more comfortable. Nobody likes feeling rejected or judged.

On the dance floor, this is what that means.

Men: Assume that everyone is there to dance. Ask them!

Women: That means if you’re not there to dance, don’t sit on the edges of the dance floor looking like you want to dance!

Men: Don’t assume by glancing that you know which women are going to be fun dance partners. A good dance partner is not only about skill. It’s also about being relaxed and enjoying the experience. It’s about dancing with a partner who can laugh at her mistakes and make you feel good.

Women: Don’t assume the men who ask you to dance are bad dancers or creepy. The old “don’t judge a book by its cover” rule applies here.

Men: Don’t let fear of rejection stop you from asking for dances from people you think might say no. Who cares? Believe in you! If someone says no, it’s probably more about them than it is about you. Their loss. Head up, move on.

Women: Unless you have a damn good reason, don’t say no when someone asks you to dance. Good reasons are: you have an injury; you have danced with that man before and he hurt you; or your feet hurt too much to dance. If reason #1 or #3 apply, get away from the dance floor!

Both parties: Dance with people you don’t know. Dance with people at all levels. Be kind. Smile! This is supposed to be fun.