Tuesday, March 3, 2015

This is why I don't date now

Last week, I stumbled across two articles on dating.  They were posted by friends who are far more active in the dating world than I am.  I retired from that scene last year.  And these articles kind of explain why.

This Is How We Date Now:
We don’t commit now. We don’t see the point. They’ve always said there are so many fish in the sea, but never before has that sea of fish been right at our fingertips on OkCupid, Tinder, Grindr, Dattch, take your pick. We can order up a human being in the same way we can order up pad thai on Seamless. We think intimacy lies in a perfectly-executed string of emoji. We think effort is a “good morning” text.  
In short, the article illustrates the ways social media and technology have affected our relationships. There's too much texting and way too much temptation to compare ourselves to the "I have the best man/woman in the world" posts and heart-framed instagram photos.

It all looks nice, but it's not real. It's not fulfilling.

And then there's this article, entitled "No, I Don't Date. Here's Why."
I don't hate dating, though, just what it's become -- online window-shopping or swiping of profiles that say nothing about a person beyond the fact that they like wearing jeans but also dressing up, going out or staying home for a quiet night. Mountains or beach? Both! ... I've also come to realize that online dating is, for me, a miserable means to a questionable end. Maybe marriage will happen; maybe it won't. But it's not a goal. I don't feel a need to make it happen.
Amen.   

I did the online dating thing for the better part of twelve years.  That's more than a decade of browsing profiles, going on first dates (and sometimes, occasionally, second dates), being stood up, and hearing "you're a great girl, but ..."  It's exhausting, and I don't think it's productive at all.

I've also tried to meet guys "organically."  I even asked some of them out.

All of my efforts have resulted in nothing.



Needless to say, I'm completely disillusioned with today's dating practices and quite honestly don't feel like it's worth the effort.

That's why I quit. I just don't think I'm built for it. It's not that I don't want to find someone. I do.  I just no longer feel like it's possible to find what I want. Not in the parameters of how dating works today.  I don't think it's a good setting for finding something meaningful and lasting.

Oh, and I've heard all the dating anecdotes out there.  

You can tell me dating is a numbers game.  I'll tell you I'm not good at games. And I don't think love should be a game.

You can tell me I have to put myself out there. I'll tell you I'm not hiding from love, but I'm just not actively chasing it.  Trust me, I'm not sitting in my apartment, praying Mr. Right will knock on my door, but I'm also not browsing for him online in the same manner I look for shoes.

You can tell me I'll find him when I least expect it.  I'll tell you that's a nice sentiment and that he should be along anytime now because I no longer expect to find it at all.

You can tell me I should be trying harder or I'll end up alone.  I'll tell you I have tried harder in the past, and I'm still alone. Plus, I'm not convinced that being in a relationship guarantees you'll never be alone.

You can tell me I'm too picky and I need to be more open.  I'll tell you I think my standards are very realistic, and I won't apologize for holding out for someone/something that reaches them.  I'd rather be alone than settle.

Another snippet from the article:
We want phone calls. We want to see a face we love absent of the blue dim of a phone screen. We want slowness. We want simplicity. We want a life that does not need the validation of likes, favorites, comments, upvotes. We may not know yet that we want this, but we do. We want connection, true connection. We want a love that builds, not a love that gets discarded for the next hit. We want to come home to people. We want to lay down our heads at the end of our lives and know we lived well, we lived the fuck out of our lives. This is what we want even if we don’t know it yet.

Yet, this is not how we date now. This is not how we love now.
This is why I'm not dating now.



7 comments:

  1. I dated a few guys before I met Scott and, since it was before 2009, I never saw FB/profile information until after I'd met them. I do remember FB-stalking Scott the morning after I met him though. (He'd spelled something wrong on his profile and it drove me nuts.) However, I absolutely get what you're saying here. I know several happy couples that met online, but I think we rely on it wayyyyy too much and see it as a solution. There's not a problem, there doesn't need to be a solution.
    Plus, the whole "once I meet someone I'll never be alone". Totally true! We've spent half our marriage apart.

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  2. I think all of that hullabaloo of "when you least expect it" and "put yourself out there" and all of the rest of it is just stuff people say because they think it will make single people feel better. The truth is that love just...happens when it happens. There is no rhyme or reason to it.

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  3. I know exactly how you feel because I've also been single for awhile and have experienced dating nowadays and it really is disappointing.

    My only thing I'd say is to never give up. That doesn't mean you have to keep putting yourself out there, but just keep your eyes open because the possibility of love could develop before your very eyes without you even making a conscious effort on it, it just happens. I started dating a guy recently and I met him on a dating site and I don't know where it's going but so far we're having fun, getting to know each other and we tell each other how we feel. It's refreshing because a lot of guys out there hide how they feel and play games. I'm a little surprised that this guy is different so we'll see.

    This is such a great post! I found you through Angie's site for the blog nominations :) Congrats!

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  4. I have two things to share, I am so glad I am not in the dating world because it clearly sucks as much as I remember with that in mind....marriage is so freaking incredibly hard that I would never, ever, ever do it again either. So put me down for cat lady status if something happens to Joe because I am done.
    Oh, and all those people who post about their perfect marriages....liars. I don't even post about mine because, it isn't perfect, as much as we love each other, we also hate each other about 25% of the time, and nobody wants to read how wonderful he is and they really don't want to read about how guys fart then laugh...they do....constantly, and have contests with thier buddies over it like 12 year old kids. Okay, is that TMI? I am just saying...men are so strange and being in love with one, doesn't make them any less stupid.

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  5. This post is kind of incredible. I love how real and open and honest it is. As someone who has jumped from one relationship to another (not healthy either), I've always wondered if I've missed just dating. But at the same time, what you've pointed out here makes me think that it's harder today than it's ever been.

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  6. Oh gosh, I absolutely HATED dating. I hated the entire thing. It was so frustrating and I'm so glad that eventually I did find the right guy. It took a while but he was out there. I know you aren't actively trying but I hope you find someone incredibly amazing and someone who deserves your time. It's hard to find but they are out there somewhere. I definitely don't think I would like the whole online dating thing either. Browsing through photos and having people look at your own just seems so demeaning and unnatural. I'm a girl that's all about personality and it's so hard to get to know someone online.

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