He’s just not that into you; something a person never wants to hear when they have feelings for that certain person. Your friend says “But he said he’ll call”, they say, “We’ve emailed each other a couple times…” All of these “reasons” of why he is apparently still into your friend are just them hoping, and holding on to this guy that obviously doesn’t care enough to call. So why is your friend longing for this guy to call? Is it because she legitimately liked him, or is it because they just want that romantic relationship that is in all movies, music,
advertisements, and our general surroundings today? In the movie, based off of a book, He’s Just Not That Into You, various characters go through their experiences with love and heart break.
What’s it to ya?
Everyday people are getting back together, and breaking up. We see it all around us; it’s in the news, with our friends, family, and our surrounding peers. Relationships evolve; for example a friendship can prosper into a romantic relationship. To counteract that, the “love of your life” may turn out to be a lesson learned; but don’t fret, with your shared that intimacy, and closeness, that he may be a perfect candidate for a new best friend.
“He’s just not into you….”
Just hearing the phrase, as I said earlier, can be devastating. When a person hears this phrase this means their partner was A-never interested or B-eventually lost interest. But what exactly does the phrase mean? Whether a person’s significant other was never interested, or if they actually were at one point, it doesn’t matter; the feelings that are necessary for a romantic relationship to blossom aren’t there. In the movie He’s Just Not That Into You, the main character Gigi struggles with this concept. Gigi is a hopeless romantic who starts imagining their wedding the minute a guy asks for her number. Gigi makes a close friend during the movie, Alex, and they share a close, open bond. Alex is the only male friend that is seen of Gigi’s throughout the movie. However, according to a study performed on cross-sex friendships, male friends are more helpful to have. (Cheung & McBride-Chang, 2010) Throughout the movie we hear Alex say….
“Gigi, he’s just not that into you…”
So what does this mean? One huge part of him not wanting to further his relationship with you is his lack of commitment. Commitment is known as when a person makes a decision to be with their significant, and remain in it with the future in mind. (Wood, 2010) With the statement “he’s just not that into you”, it shows that there is no commitment, nor will there be any time soon, on the significant other’s side. “…we always try to justify why our crushes act like they don’t have mutual feelings…” explains in her post. And she’s right. Why the constant work and effort in a relationship that isn’t giving anything back. With the lack of commitment blatantly obvious, why do people have the need to continue trying?
You should call him…
In the beginning of the movie, Gigi is on a blind date with a man named Connor. After the date, they say their goodbyes, and Gigi is smitten with him; however, Connor doesn’t feel the same way about Gigi. And so, Gigi waits for Connor to call and the longer she waits, the more anxious she gets about him not calling
her back. Finally in the office one day, a co-worker suggests that “times are changing” and women are “allowed” to call men. This inspires Gigi, and so she decides to get together with a co-worker and write a script to use when talking to Connor because she is extremely nervous and new to calling the guy first.
A reason that Gigi is scared to call Connor first is the idea of vulnerability. Vulnerability, when thinking of communicating emotions, is being timid to share our feelings with others because people are afraid how their significant other will react and perceive them after revealing their emotions. Upon calling Connor, Gigi is sent to his voicemail. She starts to read over her outline to the message machine, when she loses her place on her script. She then starts to ramble about how great of a time she had and eventually hangs up the phone. This leaves Gigi in a more vulnerable place, because when she finally decided to share her emotions, she messed up and rambled.
Want to be friends?
Towards the beginning on the movie, we see Gigi and Alex meet. The soon become good close friends. Through the movie Gigi constantly calling Alex for boy and dating advice. Gigi goes to Alex for this advice because she knows that he will be open and honest with her about what she is doing.
Alex is exemplifying an openness relational dialectic. A relational dialectic is a natural occurrence in a relationship (romantic or friendship) such as tensions and opposite forces, and how the people involved deal with them. (Wood, 2010) The dialectic that relates to this particular situation is the idea of openness and closedness.
In Gigi’s communication to Alex in their friendship, there isn’t a lot of information that isn’t shared, and this is considered openness. (Wood, 2010) An example of this is when Gigi is at a date’s apartment after the date and she isn’t sure what to do. She runs to the bathroom and calls Alex asking for his advice. She gives a detailed description of what was happening throughout the night and just moments ago; she even goes into a bit of sexual information.
If Gigi hadn’t had given Alex all the details of the night, this would be considered closedness, because she is still keeping a level of privacy in their communication. (Wood, 2010) However, Gigi did not use any privacy in their conversation and so she is utilizing an openness relational dialectic.
Aren’t you listening?
Alex is constantly helping out Gigi in He’s Just Not That Into You. Gigi is regularly calling Alex at all parts of the day to ask for his advice about whatever situation she is in, or about to enter into. Throughout their conversations on the phone, Gigi will always be in the same situation in the end-the guy isn’t into her; however, she always ends up calling Alex, and giving him a new situation.
Gigi is participating in a type of listening know as monopolizing. Monopolizing is a term used to describe a participant in a conversation who is constantly looking for a way to turn a conversation they are to focus on themselves and what’s going on in their lives. Gigi and Alex’s only conversations they have are about the men that Gigi are interested in. In one conversation, Gigi excuses a guy for not calling by saying “he may have lost my number…” and Alex responds by saying “I once called 55 Laura Bells before contacting the right one.” Gigi pauses for a moment, and then proceeds to ask what to do now. Even if Alex is talking about a past experience he has had in the dating world, Gigi still finds a way to take the story and evolve it to fit into what she wants to talk about. Finally, because Gigi never listens to what advice Alex is actually giving, she finds herself in a revolving door of bad guys who don’t want a relationship like she does.
Gigi doesn’t practice good listening because in order to do so, one has to “actually pay attention to concentrate on what other people are saying“. As previously stated, she simply likes to just turn everything Alex is saying into how her situations are different; however, if she were to actually listen, she would realize that he has situations very similar to what she is going through at that moment.
“You’re my exception”
At the end of the movie, we see a shift in Gigi and Alex’s relationship. Throughout the entire movie, we have watched them be good friends. Gigi calls Alex for advice, and Alex gives his opinion to Gigi straight up, no shenanigans. About a quarter of the way through, Gigi expresses her feelings towards Alex, however, he doesn’t reciprocate. After some time apart, Alex realizes that he does have feelings for Gigi. Alex confronts Gigi at her apartment about how he feels and this is when their relationship shifts.
In a committed romantic relationship, there is a mutual understanding of belonging in each other’s lives and putting them above other things. (Wood, 2010) There are three pieces that put together a committed romantic relationship and they are commitment, intimacy, and passion.
In Gigi and Alex’s friendship they held two of the three pieces to be in a committed romantic relationship. Gigi and Alex had commitment before in their friendship by remaining involved and giving their relationship attention. They were there for each other and helped each other a lot. Secondly, they had an intimate relationship because they knew a lot about each other. They shared the connection and closedness that was just between the two of them.
During the conversation that shifted Gigi and Alex’s friendship to a romantic relationship, Alex kisses Gigi. This is the last piece of the committed romantic relationship that they needed: passion. Passion is the desire for one another, the spark that is needed for a relationship. (Woods, 2010) By confronting Gigi about how he felt about her, and sealing it with a kiss, Alex showed that he had passion for Gigi. However, passion isn’t just about the kissing and sexual attention towards one another. It also “provides the driving force for romance, fun and adventure…” We see this side of passion at the end of the movie. Alex has friends over for a game night and we see him and Gigi playing and still having fun, but now as a couple not just as friends.
In conclusion, through watching the movie, He’s Just Not That Into You, we watch many relationships go through many different stages and subjects of relationships; however, Gigi and Alex’s relationship is the most evolving one all through the story line. They move from acquaintances, to fast friends, to eventually romantic partners.
One thing we learn from this movie is that there are many signs to whether a relationship is working or not. With that said, ladies and gentlemen, please do not be afraid to tell a friend in need that “he’s just not that into you”.
Cheung, S., & McBride-Chang, C. (2011). Relations of Gender, Gender-Related Personality Characteristics, and Dating Status to Adolescents’ Cross-Sex Friendship Quality. Sex Roles, 64(1/2), 59-69.
Taft, M. (2011, July 30). Learning to listen. Huffington post, Retrieved from http://www.huffingtonpost.com/michael-taft/learning-to-listen_b_912046.html
Torre, A. J. (2012, November 1). Really, he’s just not that into you. Huffington post. Retrieved from http://www.huffingtonpost.com/alexis-jane-torre/really-hes-just-not-that-_b_2056476.html
Wood, J. T. (2010). Interpersonal communication: everyday encounters (6th ed.).
Yoba, A. (2012, May 28). A lesson in affection: Bringing passion to relationship. The huffington post, Retrieved from http://www.huffingtonpost.com/akoshia-yoba/a-lesson-in-affection-bri_b_1550423.html
Video retrieved from: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sCWvVSE0WMk
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