I have recently reentered the world of online dating, and let me be perfectly clear. It sucks. Big time. Here’s an example. I just got an alert that “Imtheone4u” had commented on my picture. Exciting, right? So I clicked on the “see your comment” button and here’s what it said: “whoops, sorry, clicked on you by mistake, but nope. Good luck.” Seriously???
You may wonder why I embark on this exercise if I find it so painful. So do I. But about once a year or so, I get frustrated with my single status. As independent as I am, I would truthfully love to find a lovely gentleman to share my life with. And that’s hard. Even back in California, my dating life wasn’t exactly active. So imagine the challenge in Massachusetts, where I probably know less than 100 people collectively, and most of them are people I work with. The dating pool is tiny, and then add age, shape, my preferences, their preferences, and the chance that we will meet by fate or accident or at the hardware store and recognize our kindred spirits. It ain’t happening. And I’ll say it. I’m lonely, not just for any old companion, but for the right companion, that elusive unicorn of a person who can get me, and who I get.
And while online dating is, well, awful, it is where people today are meeting each other. I have several friends who have met their spouse, or their longtime partner, online. I even have close friends who met each other on Craigslist! And while no one would ever predict this would be the source of landing a quality relationship, these two wonderful people are perfectly matched, married and now with an adorable child to boot. It works. For some.
Like I said, about once a year I give it a whirl. I’ve tried J-Date (too Jewish), EHarmony (too complicated), OK Cupid (too scummy) and now I’m back on Match. I’ve connected with a few guys to the point of exchanging calls and texts. One time I actually made a real life date with an online prince, only to have him never show up at our meeting spot (unless, as I’ve always feared, he did show up, saw me, and left).
I’m not a man hater or basher by any means. I love guys! I have lovely older brothers, for instance, so I know there are great guys out there. Some of my best friends are men! But I am puzzled by the behavior of these online dudes. For starters, there’s the whole picture issue. I have 4 pictures of myself posted, all recent, all very fair representations of exactly what I look like, for good or bad. Guys seem to go two ways with this. Either they have one unfocused fuzzy long shot of themselves, where you can barely see them, or they have upwards of ten pics, several including other women, at least one by their car, frequently there seems to be a sailboat involved. I’m thinking they see this as their opportunity to chronicle their lifestyle, rather than just showing us what they look like.
Do looks matter? Yes. They do to me. I’m not saying it’s the only factor, of course not, but when you’re catalog shopping, as it were, the visual counts. I read the profiles, to be sure, every word, but if there’s only one picture and it’s so blurry I can’t make out the facial features, you’re out. And if in one of your ten pictures you’re shirtless and another one you’re standing next to your Beemer or Camaro with a smug look on your face, out!
The profiles are dicey too. Too short and I assume they just don’t really care. Too long, and they start revealing some crazy shit you don’t really want to know about another person, unless and until, you are really committed. For instance, your online profile may not be the place to share you are still hung up on your ex-wife but super horny (truth!), or that you want to be treated like a little boy (more truth and really, just ugh).
Maybe I’m too picky? Maybe this online thing just isn’t for me. I’m giving myself three months this time, and we’ll see. Maybe (keeping optimistic) two months from now I’ll be writing about falling in love. Because I’m hopefully optimistic. But I’m even more hopefully optimistic that I’ll have met him at the hardware store, my beautiful unicorn of a man, and we will live and love happily ever after.
The end, for now

One response

  1. If you cannot happily live with yourself, neither can you with someone else.

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