Tag Archives: online dating

Discoveries Through Dating – Online and Otherwise

I have attempted to rewrite this article about my experiences with online dating a couple of times. The first draft sounded like a how-to, which felt dishonest because I haven’t been particularly successful in online dating or dating in general. The second draft was an attempt to be comical because of the plethora of ridiculous experiences I have had. However, this draft started to sound bitter. Noticing the difference between what I attempted to write and the actual tone of the writing allowed me to step back and evaluate.

I couldn’t ignore the feeling that I was avoiding something bigger and truer about my experiences. Did I feel bitter? As I came to realize the reality of my circumstances, I felt my back slump and I could only acknowledge what I had been fighting for so long- I was bitter, and felt defeated. I know this sounds dramatic, but I’ve dated a lot, with a relentless effort to find someone significant. Test-tasting everyone’s advice about dating and rarely turning off my search for the next potential partner was exhausting, and I came to realize that the bitterness stemmed from two areas.

First, was that all my efforts, worries, and work to have a symbol that I was lovable through having someone else in my life came to nothing. Second, was that I dealt with a lot of issues from the men I dated. Issues that weren’t mine to deal with, and so boundaries were often fuzzy. However, another feeling rose to the surface- thankfulness.

The Wonder Years

You see, I was that girl who had a crush on one guy or another throughout high school. When I was over with one crush I would intentionally search for another. It wasn’t so much that I liked a ton of guys at the same time. I was monogamous with even my crushes. I didn’t even like these guys’ characters or want to date them, but I was obsessed with liking guys (like most teenage girls are). Obsessed, I suspect, because I was bored in a small town. I had almost crushed on every guy in my year by the time I graduated high school.

It wasn’t the cute crushing either, where the girl blushes and tries to get the guys attention by smiling all the time. It was the perpetually embarrassing kind. I would blurt out inappropriate things or tell everyone how I had held my crushes hand during community prayer. Like everyone else, I was eternally grateful when high school was over. My crushes during my high school years never developed into anything. I avoided actually dating because it was a world I didn’t fully understand. And my weirdness around guys didn’t really help things.

giphy

It wasn’t until I was 21 years old that I had my first date. I know, a full three years later and still no date. To be fair, as much as I was weird, I was also a little petrified. A deer caught in the headlights to only bolt at the last second- which happened a few too many times- until my date on a train with a guy named Dave. The only reason this even happened was because I never thought that the people I would meet during this ride were going to be anything significant. And the train was moving, it’s not like I could have gone anywhere. He made his interest known and I went a little crazy. But just a little. Not psycho or anything, just borderline obsessive. I thought: this is my chance. He’s educated, good-looking, has strong values, and he rides horses like a cowboy! It had to work. But the relationship didn’t and couldn’t have worked. He lived in Montreal and I lived in Winnipeg. Yet, I couldn’t get past the fact that someone that awesome would like me, and thought I need to seize this opportunity the best I could.

That first date led to more dates with other guys- a lot of other guys. I was living in Winnipeg at the time, a place where (unlike Vancouver or Victoria) men actually ask random girls out on dates. I didn’t need online dating. Almost every weekend I was on a new date with a new guy. I had plenty of guy friends who could have been potentials. It was overwhelming, but I soaked in the attention. It was something I had never had in my life, not because I wasn’t beautiful before, but because I had “I’m too insecure to date” written on my forehead. I ended up dating a guy for three weeks knowing after the first date that he wasn’t a keeper. There was something comforting about knowing it wasn’t going to last with him. I finished things when it got a little too drama-filled. After the breakup, it was the first time I was unmotivated to date or even have a crush. I didn’t think about dating for three months and was quite relaxed about it all. But of course, things change… Continue reading

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Houghton Students and Early Marriage [An Observation, Not a Defence] – Redux and Reflection

evan20122Three years ago I graduated from Houghton College, a Christian liberal arts college in the hamlet of Houghton, New York. A few months before I left, however, I wrote my first and only op-ed for the Houghton Star, the student newspaper, the title of which is pretty self-explanatory.

Due to recent events [three engagements within a few days of each other] marriage has very understandably been on my mind, and I thought it would be worth digging up the article and comparing where I was then to where I am now. Due to extensive revamping it’s no longer hosted on the paper’s website, so I’ve included it in its entirety below. There are also pictures from my high school and college graduations, respectively, for your enjoyment.


Houghton Students and Early Marriage
An Observation, Not a Defence


evan20082Four years ago I graduated from Grace International School, a Christian school in Chiang Mai, Thailand. With the internet and, of course, Facebook I was never really far away from my former classmates in spite of us scattering to the far corners of the globe. Since that final year of wearing matching polo shirts and eating lunch by the pool 
seven members of the class of ’08 have gotten married, two of them to each other; three others are currently engaged. Out of a class of 45 or so students that’s almost a quarter of us tying the knot before the age of 23.

A few years later I was musing about the flood of marriages [four happened at least a year after graduation] out loud to my cousin one day, and he asked why all of my classmates were getting married at such a young age. He then quickly answered his own question with a question, asking “Oh, it’s because you can’t have sex until you’re married, right?” This wasn’t a factor for him, and I vaguely recall half-heartedly muttering something to the affirmative. I knew that couldn’t be all there was to it, but it made enough sense at the time.

Now here I am, a senior with less than two months left before I hit the real world. At least four of my college friends have gotten married since my freshman year and “Save the Date” cards continue to materialize in PO boxes left and right. Proposals have lost any kind of surprise they once had for me. Not too long ago two people in one of my classes were engaged over the weekend and I [not that I wasn’t happy for them] didn’t give it a second thought. My first semester here I had never heard of “ring by spring” or the more clever “getting my MRS.” I didn’t understand at the time how quickly dating relationships could metamorphose into marriage or how prevalent engagements would be in my college life. Continue reading

Culture War Correspondence: Online Dating Sites

EVAN: I think it’s pretty fair to say that you all like being online. I mean, if you didn’t then how did you ever find yourselves in a place where you typed the words “dr.lizard vs killer croc” into Google and found our blog? Really, the internet has everything we could ever want or need save for physical sustenance, but what about . . . love?

Today Kat and I will be discussing what the deal is with what the cool kids are calling “online dating” and that the uncool kids are calling . . . well, frankly I don’t know.

KAT: I’m pretty sure they also call it online dating.

EVAN: I’m not sure how you could possibly know that, but I’m going to give you the benefit of a doubt and assume that an uncool kid told you.

KAT: Yeah… exactly. Continue reading

2 Broke Girls, S2E21 “And the Worst Selfie Ever”: A TV Review

CBS putting their sitcoms on hiatus is both a blessing and a curse. It’s a blessing because last week was my first full week of work, and I’m trying to get back into a schedule; it’s a curse because I am super rusty, and two weeks off feels like an eternity.

We start things off with Max and Caroline coming back from the “Under a Dollar,” where the former bought steak and a steak-eatin’-chair and the latter bought sheets. There’s some really great stuff here when Caroline tears her new purchase, and reads the bag it came in: “Thread count: Yes. Washing instructions: Do not wash.” Continue reading

Miss Travel is both Lame and Prostitution

I found the worst thing.

Gary Arndt, the blogger at Everything Everywhere, posted about a new site called Miss Travel.

[youtube.com=”http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=JLSiy4nUvnc”%5D

So, as you see, attractive women are paid by rich (mostly married, it seems) men to be “companions” during travel.

I’m tired, so I’m going to let you all think about this and come to your own snarky conclusions.

The site was founded by Brandon Wade, who founded the similarly designed and also terrible whatsyourprice.com.

So obviously, I signed up for the site (which was free) so I could look more into it. The process itself was unsettling – I guess it’s just because I’ve never signed up for a dating site before. It was eerie when they asked my eye and hair color, but then when I saw the options for “relationship status,”

Adventures in creating a fake dating website profile

I remembered that this was a dating website. Very odd. Also, the displayed option of having an internet-sanctioned marital affair was a weird thing to see. I guess I just haven’t had many internet affairs.

So once I filled out – with not a small amount of shame – my fake account, I went and looked at some of the featured “Generous donors”. Jezebel was right – a large amount of married men, most of them (at least reportedly) millionaires (I didn’t even KNOW that there were that many millionaires in the world). Their profiles ranged from the obvious (photos in front of expensive cars – and one that was just a helicopter) to the sort of sad (a 34-year-old, “little bit on the shy side with women. but confident when working,” whose profile photo was just him in an empty white room taking a picture with his iPhone in a mirror) to the amusing (“Want to travel the world before 12/21/12 … all the girls I know have jobs and arent willing to quit there jobs”).

The relationship-seeking options on MissTravel.com

And yes, people are looking for sex. I mean, I’m not surprised – people are often looking for sex. But the sex-looking is just so official and thinly veiled. One Generous traveler, under his description of his desired “Attractive traveler”, wrote “I hope my companion is also sensual and affectionate.”.

There is also the option for Generous travelers to just gift frequent flier miles to Attractive travelers – the dubiousness of the “gift” nature of this is described tactfully: “So why would a Travel Sponsor give you miles? For many reasons. Some may want an online friend.” The lesson is: pictures of your boobs (which most of the profile pictures of Attractive travelers are anyways) will be rewarded.

One odd aside is that MissTravel.com linked the Jezebel article under their media coverage, which is called The Dating Website Where Rich People Take Pretty People on Fancy Vacations, Which Is 100% Definitely Not Prostitutey at All. I guess any publicity is good publicity and all that. But really – the article described the site as having “a F***TON of gross married dudes.”

Also, Gary Arndt was wrong about one thing: he said that “Most of the women in the system seem like very normal women.” If normal women pose in bikinis on their knees on their beds in front of cheap webcams and use profile pictures that cut off their heads so to better display their cleavage, then yes, most of the women on Miss Travel are very normal women.

So, for your weekend meditation, I ask you to consider the impressive ability of the internet to bring all of the bad ideas and unscrupulous people into one place.