1. She knows how to make an incredibly awkward situation into a good time. She’s lived through some excruciatingly awkward encounters in high school, and knows how to turn them around.
2. She won’t demand all of your attention, because she wasn’t coddled growing up. She’s used to taking care of her siblings (and probably has a lot of them). She appreciates when you treat her like royalty because it’s a foreign concept to her.
3. You will be expected to meet her family and wow them. Her parents need to sign off on you and determine that you have “good intentions,” etc. This is a requirement if the woman you’re dating is 19 or 34. She might say she doesn’t care what they think, but she absolutely does because family is important to her.
4. Never assume that she knows less about sports than you. The fastest growing NFL audience is women and her school probably had a March Madness bracket.
5. If she’s in her early 20s, don’t be alarmed when you hear a lot about her friends who are getting married or expecting their first child. It doesn’t mean she’s hoping you’ll propose after 3 dates. It’s just a fact: She has friends getting married. Deal with it.
6. She owns at least two go-to puritanically conservative outfits for masses, and other very conservative social engagements. Do not laugh at these outfits.
7. She thinks getting dressed is stressful, even if the last time she wore a uniform was 10 years ago. Uniforms were just SO EASY. Sure, the knee socks were a little over the top, but at least back then she didn’t have to worry about what matched.
8. She’s probably kissed a girl in someone’s basement on a dare. Yeah, yeah, yeah, okay. Laugh. Get the fantasy out of your system and let’s move on.
9. She will openly complain about shaving her legs, wearing a bra, or other things most girls would deem inappropriate for normal conversation. It’s in her nature to be overly candid because she was used to yelling stuff like that to her girlfriends in the hallway.
10. She knows more weird and obscene religious jokes than you do.
11. You shouldn’t even bother to make the stereotypical jokes about promiscuity or periods syncing up. She’s heard all the jokes. They’re never funny. If she laughs, it’s mostly just a courtesy.
12. Yes, okay, fine. If you dig through her college photo albums on Facebook, you’ll probably be able to find a picture of her wearing a slightly altered uniform for Halloween.
13. She is still OBSESSED with her friends from high school. She talks about them constantly. She will defend them at all costs. You need to remember their names. There will be a quiz later.
14. She likes to rebel, even if she won’t admit it. People will assume it’s related to sex, but mostly she just liked to cause trouble because WHAT ELSE WAS THERE TO DO AT AN ALL-GIRLS CATHOLIC SCHOOL? She likes to talk back, challenge people and generally take the more mischievous route.
15. Don’t go through her old iTunes library. It’s probably embarrassing. Her former life involved blasting Spice Girls and country music with no shame. Do not judge her for having a soft spot for OAR.
16. She still doesn’t totally understand how to put make-up on.
17. She’s traditional in that she’s used to old-fashioned manners and appreciates any chivalrous gesture. But that doesn’t mean she can’t take care of herself. She can and she will.