Let’s say I like blueberry pancakes (I do, for what it’s worth). I might share a few stories about some amazing breakfasts I’ve had. I might boast about my mouth-watering homemade recipe. I might spam your feed (lol food references) with photos of the best looking pancakes you’ve ever seen. I might even occasionally ask where I might find more scrumptious, syrupy samples.
But none of that means I want you to bring me pancakes. And it certainly doesn’t mean that if you show up at my door with a stack that I’m obligated to take them. (Ok, I wouldn’t want them to go to waste, so I probably would take them, but you see my point, yes?)
Sharing my interests doesn’t equate to posting a want-ad for my needs. I share a lot about what I do, what I like, what I want, etc., but in sharing these things I’m not asking to be provided with more.
At minimum I’m asking for acknowledgement: “Thanks for sharing your recipe!”
Slightly beyond that, a sign that I’ve somehow impacted someone’s life is pretty nice: “I tried the recipe you posted and it’s the bomb!”
I also like receiving non-intrusive suggestions that might further my pursuits: “Have you ever tried making pancakes with cottage cheese? My mom used to do that and I swear to this day I’ve never had better.”
That’s really all I’m looking for when I post. I like knowing that people appreciate what I’m into, and it’s great knowing that my interests are shared.
But I get the sense that some people believe a shared interest must always lead to something more: “You like pancakes huh? I also like pancakes. I’m in your vicinity and have all the proper ingredients, so when do you want to get together?”
I’m grateful that you took the time to learn about my love of pancakes, but I never asked for a new pancake partner. I’m not going to invite you into my kitchen just because you exist and you also happen to enjoy pancakes.
Can our shared interest in pancakes open the door to my kitchen? Certainly! But I’m going to need you to stay outside for a while. I need to learn some other things about you first. What’s your opinion on waffles? And more to the point, am I going to feel safe around you in a place where there are sharp knives and burning hot griddles?
For now let’s just toast to the fact that pancakes exist and that they’re delicious. (Lol, toast.)