Dating in the Dojo

Discussion in 'The Locker Room Bar & Grill' started by Nightingale, Sep 8, 2003.

?

Do you think its appropriate to date someone you meet in the dojo?

  1. Sure, why not?

  2. Maybe, but you have to be careful and think about what might happen if things don't work out.

  3. yes, but only between students, students and instructors dating is inappropriate

  4. no, its never appropriate

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  1. Big Don

    Big Don Sr. Grandmaster

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    Fixed it for you... :D
     
  2. SiMui

    SiMui White Belt

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    I recently had my older training brother express an interest in me, but it was not what I was looking for in taking martial arts, and I wasn't interested in him so I had to turn him down; but I was worried how he would feel after the rejection. Being the only girl in the class (not so much these days), I worried that it might be possible to become someone's interest because I know that MA fanatics need to be able to share their love of MA. I hope this doesn't happen again!

    The worst part was his attempt to convince me that what happens outside the school does not interfere with what happens inside the school, but I know that I don't have that kind of control over my feelings to totally forget for the hour that we ever spend together. I didn't know if that was supposed to make me feel safer, or if it was a good reason for us to get together!

    There are very few women involved in my martial art, and from what I hear, there have been no good endings to come from instructors and students. I am unaware of inter-student relationships that have worked or failed. I'm also unsure of how I feel about. It's all up to the amount of maturity two individuals have.


    simui
     
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  3. OnlyAnEgg

    OnlyAnEgg Senior Master

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    I'd really treat it like dating in the workplace.

    I'd be uncomfortable if the relationship went south in a bad way.
     
  4. OnlyAnEgg

    OnlyAnEgg Senior Master

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    Welcome to MArtial Talk!
     
  5. SageGhost83

    SageGhost83 Brown Belt

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    I generally discourage it, but if the couple has the maturity and respect to pull it off without it affecting their training and the training hall environment, then I think that it is okay.
     
  6. Tez3

    Tez3 Sr. Grandmaster

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    My daughter met her partner working alongside him, there are several couples where they work in fact the business is run by a couple. they all get on well, though tensions get high during Derby week lol!

    http://www.markjohnstonracing.com/
    Had to post this lol, it's where my daughter and her partner work and also live, second photo down in the gallery, way back in the distance is the yard where they have their house. If they all fall out it's a long way back to town! Some of them also train with us. It's a very close community where they live, work, play and partner off among themselves but they manage fine by being adult and sensible.
     
  7. Big Don

    Big Don Sr. Grandmaster

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    We recently had one of these things go all sideways. It is NOT good.
     
  8. Tez3

    Tez3 Sr. Grandmaster

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    It's human nature, one doesn't beome an automaton when one becomes a martial artist. It just requires everyone to be adult.
     
  9. just2kicku

    just2kicku Black Belt

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    I actually met my wife at the dojo. She wasn't a student, her older sister was. After dating she actually started classes and enjoys it very much. I do not teach her tho, I have a tendency of being a lot harder on her than everyone else.
     
  10. shihansmurf

    shihansmurf Black Belt

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    I've witnessed it go badly a few time so I'm a bit uncomfortable with it but I also teach my wife so I'm kind of two minds on the subject(although to be fair she started training after we began dating, I didn't pick up on one of my students).

    I look at teaching the same way I do any professional relationship. I have certain boundaries that I think are inappropriate to cross. A student comes to me to learn karate. They don't come to me to be taught religeon, or politics, or for sexual favors. If they are interested in any of those they are barking up the wrong tree and I send them down the road to where they can find whatever it is they wanderd through my door in search of. Now I tend to become friends with my students that is the extent of it.

    When I was a much younger man I found myself entangled in a romantic situation that involved a couple of other members of a school where I was training. Things ended badly and after all was said and done we all ended up at different schools as a result(directly or not). I learned a valuable lesson about not pooping where one eats from that.

    I think that for an instructor to be romanticaly involved can effect their objectivity and grant the impression of favoritism, which is why I don't grade my wife. One of my peers does that for me, I would have the tendency to grade her too harshly to avoid the appearance of favoritism and this would be unfair to her. Conversley, I don't want any accomplishment that she achieves in the art to be impacted by the fact that I awarded it to her.

    As far as students dating, as long as they can leave personal issues outside to the degree possible then I am okay with it. I think it is a bad idea, but people are people and you can't help who you got the happies for.

    Mark
     
  11. Tez3

    Tez3 Sr. Grandmaster

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    Martial arts is only a profession for a very few ( lucky ones I'll add) for everyone else it's a sport or hobby so I don't understand why there should be an embargo on dating among students when there will be no such thing in any other sport or hobby. It's as if we are saying, people, you can't be treated as adults either that or martial arts is somewhat up itself! sometimes people can sound very pompous about martial arts when discussing subjects like this.
    People are always going to be attracted to others with similiar interests or passions so why would there be any surprise that students in martial arts find themselves attracted to each other.
    Instructors picking up students is another subject totally.
     
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  12. shihansmurf

    shihansmurf Black Belt

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    Pompous? I actually think I sound more pretentious....

    :)

    I agree with you. I've just have had a couple of negative experience in refrence to this sort of thing. I've sent a couple off the mat due to verbal sniping during drills. I've had a couple refuse to work with each other during class because they were involved in an argument. I've also had to seperate a couple of fellows that decided to raise the level of contact and intensity durring kumite one night over a girl that they were both seeing who also trained at my school. That ended badly.

    As far as the "professional" side of things go. I maintain a certain amount of detatchment when I teach. Its sort of similar to how I conduct myself at work for me. See, when I go to work I stop being Mark and shift into being Staff Sergeant Chapman. Now, I am still personable(as much as any NCO is) and all but I am still SSG Chapman. On a similar note when I teach karate from the moment I bow the class in I stop being Mark and start being Mr. Chapman. I am still friendly and personable. I crack jokes and am pretty informal compared to most shotokan teachers but I am still professional. I don't loose sight of the fact that I am the teacher. I think that this is important and it allows me to maintain a positive learning enviornment for my students.

    As to students seeing each other. What happens outside of my class isn't my buisness. If it bleeds over into my class it become so only in as much as it effects thier behavior in class. Beyond that, I stay out of it. I think its a bad idea to become romanticaly involved with training partners as, should things go badly, it becomes awkward but thats just me. As I stated I had a bad experience with that as a young man and learned a hard lesson from it. Were I single, I wouldn't entertain the notion. To be fai though I am pretty compartmentalized and am able to think of places like the dojo as "no nookie zones". Maybe I'm wired funny but I like to keep it simple.

    Just my view
    Mark
     
  13. Flea

    Flea Beating you all over those fries!

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    What a great thread!

    For myself, I'm the only woman in my school so there is no pool to fish in. :uhyeah: But were that not the case, I wouldn't date in class anyway. I go there to learn, and I don't want to distract myself from that.
     
  14. Tez3

    Tez3 Sr. Grandmaster

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    I can't imagine anyone who comes to train in martial arts with the intention of looking for a romantic partner is actually going to last long lol!
    I think everyone who stays in martial arts is there for the training but human nature being what it is there may be attractions and love growing, I think thats nice actually.

    We don't have the romantic entanglements causing arguments tiffs etc we tend to get the macho guys who come in to 'prove themselves', they lose but while it can be amusing it's also annoying.
     
  15. seasoned

    seasoned MT Senior Moderator Staff Member

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    I see nothing wrong with it as long as it does not interfere with training and it is done with maturity.
     
  16. Blade96

    Blade96 Senior Master

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    used to have a meh attitude towards it. Then it happened to me.

    Now I say "Never Again!"
     
  17. Dirty Dog

    Dirty Dog MT Senior Moderator Staff Member

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    Not at the dojo but...

    My wife and I met at work. Knew each other for years, and about a year after my divorce (and about 18 months after hers) we started dating. Twelve years later, we still manage to live together, commute together, work together (often, literally side by side) and train together (she and my oldest daughter are 3rd geups), dive together (and she's never even tried to turn off my air...).

    It can be nasty if it doesn't work out. But it can be heavenly if it does.
     
  18. Blade96

    Blade96 Senior Master

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    I almost had to leave my dojo over mine. Because my ex the very next class after i dumped him, he got with his now gf immediately, brought her to my dojo and put her in my face and said he did it to get back at me. He brought her to the dojo a mumber of times but i had enough, I went to my sensei and told him and he said well my ex was gonna leave soon cause he was opening his own dojo, so smile, ok? My senseis didnt want me to leave really. They liked me. So I said Ok. I am glad sensei turned out to be right and I never had to leave :)123
     

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