Thank you to Fiona Clapham Howard of Crucible Consulting NZ for the following guidelines
Being safe means looking after not only your physical safety, but also your emotional wellbeing as well as your social health - your reputation and standing in our dance community.
Dancing modern jive is a highly social experience. There's nothing wrong with making social connections and friendships at classes. Some people get even closer, maybe dating for a while before moving on, while others have met their life partners through dance classes.
The touch and the closeness, the emotional tone of the music, can all combine to make us feel a sense of intimacy and connection with someone. However, it's important to be realistic about how little you really know about someone, just from the time you spend with them at dance. You've only met them so far in one pretty limited context - to build real intimacy takes time and experience of each other in many different situations.
We strongly recommend you take time to get to know people slowly, before moving into any one-to-one situations, particularly being alone in private with each other. This applies both to asking others to be alone with you, as well as agreeing to spend time alone with someone. For instance, accepting a ride in someone's car, or inviting them into your home.
Our advice is that if you want to get closer to someone you've met through dance, take the time to experience them in group settings outside of Fevah classes first. When you first spend time alone with them, make sure it's in a public place, e.g. a cafe, or going for a walk in a populated area.
Taking your time means you can test that sense of intimacy you feel with them. Is it consistent in different situations? Do they treat you with the same respect and care away from the dance floor? What about if no one's looking?
- Being invited to spend time alone with someone very quickly after meeting them at Fevah - a respectful and genuine individual will be willing to get to know you slowly and safely.
- You believe you are in a close relationship with another dancer, but they never leave or arrive at Fevah with you, and they don't let other dancers see you being physically affectionate with each other.
- A dancer who needs alcohol to have a good time - while a little bit can help people relax in social settings, it also takes the edge off the care and attention needed for good partner dancing, and can make dancing frankly unsafe for many reasons.