This isn’t a bragging thread; it’s a solicitation for advice.
I’ve been spending a good amount of time with a certain gal lately, and the possibility of dating is definitely in the future (we’re taking a road trip this weekend, which will involve me meeting her mom). I’m crazy about her, as she knows, and can really see making a bright future with her.
Then last night she tells me something I’ve heard before: she’s “intimidated by my intelligence.” Apparently she often feels I’m leaving her behind in conversation, and I “make her feel stupid.”
Now, it’s not as though I’m quoting Geulincx and drawing exquisite parallels to the work of Antonioni in casual conversation. Besides, she’s a sharp cookie herself, and often inspires me with the amazing things she knows about that I don’t. And she’s got an emotional intelligence and sensitivity that I can only admire from a distance, as I’ll never hope to get there myself.
So what do I tell her? What I said last night was something like “Please don’t say that; I grew up a ‘whiz kid’ and spent a lot of my life being shut out by others because of it.” Obviously this wasn’t the best thing to say, but I don’t know what to tell her to ease her unfounded insecurities; she apparently feels we’re talking on two different levels, which I’ve never felt at all. I can’t stand the idea that being able to do math in my head somehow sets me apart from others.
So c’mon, dopers: You’re a savvy bunch, and I’m sure some of you have encountered this situation before. What can I tell her that won’t sound condescending (which, I repeat, is not how I feel)?
Not so smart now, am I?