(Warning: rant ahead.) I am really sick of the mentality amongst my generation that one does not owe other people the barest minimum level of respect and consideration unless one has some longstanding, deeply intimate bond with that person.
Yes, in fact, you do. I feel that we all "owe" everyone respect and consideration, just on the basis that they are fellow people. I'm talking about the most basic level of decency: returning phone calls, giving your seat to the pregnant lady on the subway, not talking loudly on your cell phone in the library. The comfort and feelings of people other than yourself deserve consideration, even if they are not your best friend or your family or your partner. Even if they are virtual strangers.
This attitude is rampant in the dating world, especially online dating. And I find it really distasteful. Take standing someone up, for instance. A lot of people think that it's totally acceptable to just disappear on someone because they are allergic to confrontation and they think the other person will just figure it out on their own. Well, sure, that person will eventually figure out that you're not coming to meet them, but only after a long while of waiting around and wondering what happened and feeling foolish and confused. The entire point of being polite is to show consideration for others, so that they don't feel those awkward and possibly hurtful/insulting feelings. It costs you literally nothing to be respectful, and I feel like if you consider basic politeness to be too taxing, frankly, you're rude and immature. Part of being a grown-up person in this world where other people live and interact with you is using your words and being kind to others.
Ugh. I know others might not agree with me, but just had to get that off my chest.