I was reading through Freshly Pressed today to see what other bloggers are writing about, and I found a fellow blogger who posted about online dating. I was laughing reading it, and I realized that I haven’t written my online dating blog yet. I’ve written on The Balding of the Beaver (yes, that beaver), emotional unavailability, passive aggressive behavior and other dating topics but not online dating. How did I miss that? That’s the single topic that most of my friends kept pushing me to blog about. I think it’s about time!
My fellow blogger was making the point that men write their profiles in such a way that they are unbelievable, and they are searching for gorgeous supermodels who have great jobs, want kids, and like to spend all their time doing outdoor activities. Her point was that these things are unrealistic and contradictory. She is 30 and looking for men around that age, I assume. Wait until she hits the 50ish group on Match.com. First of all, 1/2 of the men look like old men. They don’t even try to look good in their photos. They take their wedding picture and cut out the bride and stick it on the site. Never mind that they were married 25 years ago. I would meet them in person and think, is this his Dad? Who is this guy?
There is a search feature on Match.com where you can search for “mutual matches”. This means that you both are looking for similar things. I use that feature a lot. I seem to find quite a few guys who realistically look like we might have some of the same interests. The other search feature is “men looking for you.” Everytime I try that search, it pulls up a list of serial killers. I’m not kidding. I told this to a friend of mine, and she thought I was joking. I showed her when she came over to my house. OMG…she said…it’s true. They have no teeth, haven’t bathed in weeks, and look like Charles Manson. WHY ARE THEY LOOKING FOR ME? One guy that was “looking for me” was from Arkansas. He was looking for “a woman with her own Harley and preferably, a bass boat.” Yeah……sign me up.
I was on Match.com for a couple of years. I’m taking a hiatus right now, but I’ll go back. It’s actually been a pretty good experience. It’s entertaining to say the least, and I’ve made a few good friends in the men I’ve met. The guys tell me that the women lie a lot in their profiles. Many are surprised that I’m actually who I say I am. One guy said one woman he met posted a picture of her sister. When he met her, and she looked totally different and weighed 200 more pounds than her photo, she got really angry that he walked out on her. He said, “even if I was attracted to her, she lied to me. What else is she going to lie about?”
The “loser” women I’ve heard about are typically looking for somebody to support them, remodel their kitchen, drive them home when they are drunk or pay for their dinners, nothing more. These poor guys get their hopes up and get used. There actually are some nice guys out there. Many are shy. I’ve met so many that are just out of really long term marriages, and they are so shell-shocked about dating that they literally tremble. I feel really sorry for those guys. I spend the first part of our meeting just trying to help them feel at ease. One guy could barely put a sentence together he was so nervous. When we left, he told me he wanted to see me again. I told him that I just really didn’t think we had a lot in common. I hated those times when I had to say I wasn’t interested to somebody that was so fragile. But, I don’t believe in pity dating.
I met a guy who was an airline pilot for FedEx. This was before I worked for FedEx. He told me he was a widow. His wife had died of cancer. I told him I was sorry for his loss. He told me how his friends had advised him to get on with his life. It was time for him to start dating again, they told him. I asked him how long it had been. He said…..30 days. What? I wanted to run out of Starbucks when he said that. He barely had her buried, and he was out dating. OR……more likely, he was lying. Whatever the case, I wanted no part of that.
I would meet men for coffee and see if we clicked before I’d go out for a dinner. Usually I’d know within the first 15-20 minutes whether I was interested in seeing them again. The men I met stated that they liked camping, running, biking, hiking or other assorted activities. But, when I asked them how often they go, most hadn’t gone in years. I met a guy at the Peabody downtown for coffee. In mid-sentence of him telling me about himself, he says, “You know what I value? I value the woman having an orgasm before me.” I was so stunned that I just hissed, “I CANNOT believe you just said that to me. That was the most inappropriate thing I’ve ever heard. I hardly know you.” He immediately started apologizing, but the damage was done. The meeting was over.
I signed up for one of the free sites on a whim. That was a mistake. I never did meet anyone of quality on that site. I’m sure there are some, but I didn’t meet them. I did meet one guy who texted me a movie of himself and …..well…..himself. It was totally unsolicited, and he got a no-nonsense text back….lose my number, pal. That was enough of Plenty of Fish.com. There may be plenty of fish on that site, but they stink.
Online dating is a great place to meet people, but it’s not easy. You really have to be willing to be rejected frequently. People would ask me how it was going. “I’m kissing toads” was always my answer. You have to be willing to work at it and take some risks. You have to be willing to hold your heart in check until you really get to know these people. There are some people out there that are not who they say they are. But, most of the guys are just trying to find their way. Most are guys who are lonely, maybe hurt, maybe still pining over an ex-wife or girlfriend. Some are jerks, but they are fairly easy to spot. They are self-centered, want sex right away and will disappear if they don’t get it. Some are just as disillusioned as I am with the dating scene. They just want to find someone for a companion, someone to care about. The guys who have been single all their lives…well…there is probably a reason for that, I’ve found. It’s almost not worth the time. If you’re brave….if you want something interesting to do…if 2013 is the year of living dangerously, I say, go for it. They are always running a special.