First, a story. A few years ago, I dated a guy I’ll call Jeff. We only saw each other romantically for a grand total of two months, but it was significant because Jeff was the first guy I had dated since the breakup of my engagement where it felt like I finally had let go of a lot of the baggage that comes with that kind of life-altering, trust-shattering heartbreak. I had dated a bit since that breakup, and even had a rocky six-month relationship at one point, but I was still so messed up. At first, dating Jeff felt like a breath of fresh air. I felt much more together emotionally, and he was courting me like an adult, planning actual dates and seemingly not playing any games. On paper, he seemed to have it together — a good job, aspirations, a positive outlook on the world and what he wanted to contribute to it. Physically, the relationship progressed at a much slower rate than I was used to — we only kissed for the first month — and I took my cues from him, convinced that this was a reflection of him taking me “seriously.” Keep reading »
Like conducting a job search, online dating is an exercise in patience, compatibility, and, sometimes, rejection. It’s not romantic, but to a certain degree, the search for a suitable partner is not unlike the job hunt. You use the internet to varying degrees of success, clicking and writing emails and then clicking some more, and sometimes, if the cards are in your favor and the stars align, you end up meeting a stranger in a public setting and make awkward small talk while wearing shoes that pinch your toes and more makeup than you would for a Tuesday. When it’s over, you’re euphoric or despondent, alternating between mapping out a future for yourself or envisioning waiting for an email that never arrives. You follow up, you wait, things usually don’t pan out. When you do find success, you realize that it came the way most things in life happen — organically, through people you know. Matched with destiny, your future trips happily towards the light.
This is the best case scenario, a situation that everybody assures you will happen, regardless of how dire it all looks. Keep reading »
My best friend went on a date with a man who seemed fine at first — they sat at a neighborhood bar and talked for hours. They went on a second date, but this time, the dude tried every trick in the book to get her to come to his place and have sex. She refused his offer, and tried to leave it be, but three days later, when she was visiting me from out of town, she showed me the text he sent, asking her in a very straightforward manner whether or not she was interested, or if her lack of communication was the hint that he needed.
“You have two options here,” I told her. “Write back with a one word answer, or just don’t respond.”
“I have to say something,” she said. “I can’t just ignore this.”
“Just ghost on him, dude,” I told her. “It’s easy.”
When is it appropriate to ghost? Some may say never, that each person deserves the courtesy of hearing directly that you’re not interested in them, but please, take a moment to think about how many times you’ve been ghosted, specifically how sometimes it was fine and sometimes it wasn’t. It goes both ways. Here are some common dating situations in which it’s perfectly fine to ghost. Keep reading »
Last week, I went on my first date with Jack, the young publicist I met through work. And after I tell you all what occurred on that date, I’m confident you will understand why my first date with Jack was also our last.
After taking the initiative to ask Jack out, I figured I’d let him take the reins and plan our first date. We agreed to get together after work and didn’t have a game plan, so we decided to just play it by ear. He met me by the steps of the New York City Public Library and was as cute as I remembered, but slightly younger looking (which was probably just my subconscious reminding me that I was a cradle robber). He suggested we go grab some coffee and then maybe a bite to eat afterwards, depending on how we felt. On our walk to get caffeinated, he said, “I’m glad you asked me out. I like seeing a proactive woman who isn’t afraid to make the first move.” We were off to a great start. Keep reading »
Nobody handles The Talk very well. Usually, it’s a stilted affair, capable of rendering even the most confidently grown to their pre-teen self, stuttering and drawing circles in the condensation left by their wineglass, assiduously avoiding eye contact. Defining the relationship, or DTR, if you’re of the ilk that favors cutesy acronyms, is a necessary evil, but something that not a single soul is very good at. The nature of modern dating is such that the traditional markers of what make a relationship real change every day and it can seem like there’s a decided lack of stability. It’s not as easy as getting someone’s letterman jacket and walking down Main Street to the soda fountain anymore. The way we date now easily lends itself to shirking real commitment. First dates in the traditional sense are replaced by weird group outings in which you attempt to get to know someone you made goopy eyes with at a bar while surrounded by a buffer three people deep, including his friends from college and that dude at work, Josh. It’s a honest miracle that anyone even makes it to The Talk, because the obstacle course that stands between you and a relationship is harrowing.
The fun doesn’t end once you’ve actually sat down and faced the person of your intent, with all your emotions out on the table. The kind of relationship you can neatly explain to your mom in a hastily composed text message is a thing of the past. It makes sense that the end result of a nebulous and frankly, confusing wooing process, is also difficult to pin down. With that in mind, here are some possible results of the dreaded Talk. Keep reading »