It is so funny to see how some social behaviors are exactly the same between France and the US, and others are completely different. Well, this was a big shock to me when I arrived in the US. I understood of course a man and a woman could be interested in each other in a romantic way, let me reassure you.
One of the very obvious difference is the dating game. But I was not aware that accepting to go out to dinner with a man alone gave the signal that I was possibly romantically interested in him.
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It is important to keep in mind that while a Parisian dating partner may be wearing a smile and seems enthusiastic, speaking in a foreign language for a long period of time is exhausting to them.
Even for a married woman to go out with a male friend who is single: I often travel to Paris by myself, Leyla and Olivier stay in Paimpol, and have dinner with one (or several) of our good male friend(s), single or not.
Olivier trusts me, and we both trust our friend(s), who would never make a pass at me.
Nor did I know about this first date, second date and third date business.
In France, it’s very common for a girl to go out to dinner with a male friend.