Should You Go To Prom With Someone You Don't Know? 7 Pros And Cons To Consider
The big day is coming up, and here you are, dateless and nervous — and while going to the prom without a date can actually have a lot of perks, you've always imagined having someone else by your side. There are a few people you are kinda-sorta familiar with, but now you're somewhat stuck in a bind — should you go to prom with someone you don't know, go solo, or just skip the whole thing all together? It's a lot of stress that'll thankfully disintegrate immediately once you go to college, but now, in the moment, it's kind of ruining your final days of high school.
Going to the prom with someone you're not too familiar with has its pros and cons. Really, the final decision depends solely on you. If you're more of a free-spirit who is totally fine with independence (or hasn't truly felt the need for a boyfriend or girlfriend at this stage in life), asking around might just lead you to stress this out even further. Now you have to try and coordinate with colors, and transportation, and tables — what if he or she has a completely different friend group that you already know you don't jive with? On the other hand, if you're the type of person who has more experience with dating, and wants to guarantee a spot on the dance floor for all of the slower numbers, not asking someone might put a damper on the evening. You, personally, work best with groups, and feel a little like an outcast if everyone has a date but you.
Here are a few pros and cons to both decisions. After some consideration, hopefully you can make a decision that'll make your prom a night to remember.
Pro: You might turn prom night into a friendship, or relationship
Do you kinda-sorta like the other person? Were they always a big mystery to you, that you never had the chance to crack throughout your time in class together? Well, why not take the plunge? The worst thing that can happened is that they say no, and then the prom crisis ends naturally. It's possible they never thought they'd get asked, or hoped all along that you would ask them, but they simply didn't have the confidence. Even if it doesn't turn into a love connection, there's no such thing as having too many friends.
Con: You might end up being super incompatible
Between the time you ask, and the night of the prom, there might not be a lot of "getting to know you" time. If he or she says yes, and then you realize you two don't seem to have much in common, you might end up dreading the actual night. It's also good to be on the safe side that when you ask, you're not giving into any "expectations." Prom has turned into a magical myth of what happens before or after, and if your date sees this as a booty call while you see it as a single night to spend with friends, things might get a bit awkward. For the record, you should always stand your ground.
Pro: You'll instantly have someone to dance and sit with
Even if you hate slow dances, it's kind of nice to embrace the moment and participate in at least one. When you have a date, you have a guaranteed "in" on the dance floor. Plus, it's well known that dance floor conversations are always somewhat hilarious. At my prom, my date humorously gave me a play-by-play of what he was witnessing around the dance floor. At my wedding, my dad was telling me about a few CDs he picked up at a store a few days earlier. Both of these still stick in my mind, years later. Who knows why.
Con: You might be separated from your friends
You were in yearbook club throughout high school, and your date happened to be a varsity soccer player. The two groups never seemed to mingle much before, and you're not sure where you should pledge your loyalty. If you hang out with your date's friends, it may be a forgettable prom, but you can't force them to be buddy-buddy with your crowd, either. It could work out, if you make a plan to individually hang with others — after all, just because you have a date, it doesn't mean you have to be tied at the hip the entire night.
Pro: Even if your date is a dud, you'll still have plenty of people to talk with
On that note, remember that there will be other people at this dance. It won't be like an awkward first date, without a proper out. You don't want to be a jerk and abandon your date (especially if he or she might have a thing for you) but you are allowed to peruse the room, make conversation, and take a bunch of selfies with your friends. The whole "date is a dud" thing is something you'll figure out when you're actually at the prom, and you'll be able to properly tone things down when the time calls for it, no doubt about it.
Con: If your date is on the dramatic side, they might get mad if you're socializing with others
Back to the friends point. Remember how I said you don't want to be a jerk? Well, communication that seems non-jerk-like to you might come off as being a diss to your date, who may have envisioned the "perfect prom" for years. It's a high pressure event, but doesn't need to be. Convincing your date of this prior to is a little difficult, since you don't know them that well to begin with.
If you can't put your date first tonight, making it fun for both of you, you'll probably be better off solo. If jealousy arises, do your best to try and show them that you came to the event with them, and feel free to lessen communication once the night is through. A prom invite isn't a life sentence, or even a promise that it'll blossom into a real relationship afterward. It's just one person arriving at a dance with another person.
Pro: You have nothing to lose by asking
The fear of rejection is real. But, hey. If you put yourself out there, and the stranger seems a little hesitant, you did nothing wrong. If you get turned down, and this person makes it a huge deal, obviously they're not someone you'd want to hang out with during prom anyway. All in all, this is just one night where you dress up and have a little fun. The person you ask should feel a boost of confidence that you want to go with them, and even if they decide to make other arrangements, you still gave it a shot. It's way better than just attending alone in the first place, and wondering what could have been.
Images: Pixabay; Giphy (7)