I’ve had a boyfriend for four years and we’re not engaged. I know. But we like it that way for now. Seriously.
To me, getting married is not something that a person should do when she has to call her mother multiple times a day for various reasons including, “I was too scared to kill a bug so I just drowned it in Raid. Will I get cancer now?” Marriage doesn’t seem appropriate for someone who is continually moving the same 20 dollars from checking to savings.
As a wife, you can’t regularly experience existential crises like I do. In my mind, marriage is for more worldly people, people who have settled down in life. Because after you say “I do” comes the purchase of a house and the arrival of children. And quite frankly, I’m not comfortable with that. I openly admit it: I am not ready to get married. Now is not the time to tie the knot.
However, the lack of a princess cut or pear-shaped diamond on my hand seems to prove upsetting to those who know me. The amount of times per day that I am questioned about my relationship status is becoming rather alarming. During a recent trip to my dentist, the hygienist immediately grabbed my hand, and then let out an audible sigh. I was unsure whether I should apologize or just smile and walk away. Instead, upon further questioning, I blurted out, “No ring. Just some dry skin.” That seemed to put an end to the conversation. Keep reading »
I’ve never been fond of being called “nice.” Nice, to me, is a consolation-prize adjective; it’s a lazy descriptor you use for a person who isn’t interesting enough to rate a few more syllables. Nice is for potholders and admirable recycling habits, for neutral weather patterns and cuts of salmon. Even the slightly more enthusiastic, stoner-drawl version of the word, Niiiiiiice!, and its cousin, Sweeeeet! are usually reserved for cars, surfable waves, or extensions of deadlines. Or, you know, marijuana.
And yet, people generally tend to label me as nice and sweet, and I suppose, in my wussy way, I am. It pains me to be rude to telemarketers. I always repost Facebook pictures of abandoned puppies. I do recycle responsibly – what of it?
So when, on our first date Joe*, a guy who I’d met at a bar, said I was a “nice girl,” it wasn’t immediately a dealbreaker. Nice is a cross I’ve borne for a long time, and if I ruled out every guy who called me it, I would be restricted to a dating pool comprised only of surly, rage-provoking DMV employees. Keep reading »
He was everything a girl could have ever wanted. Smart, handsome, a steady job, well-dressed, and French, Pierre met all of my requirements for boyfriend material. Our relationship — which lasted a little over a year — began when I was studying in Paris during my junior year abroad. I was lonely and depressed from a series of romantic failures and friendships gone awry, and he was getting over a broken heart. We met in a Parisian café on a cold March night and instantly hit it off. It was just like something out of a cheesy romantic comedy.
Except for the fact that Pierre was 30 years older than me. Keep reading »
One day, you’ll be leaving work, your limbs heavy with dating fatigue. You’ll trudge to the subway with a sourness in your soul. I’m done with dating, you’ll whisper into to the dank subway air. That’s it. I will live underground in the subway tunnels like those mole people and never have to sit through another awkward round of drinks again. You’ll be so wrapped up in your self-pitying reverie that you’ll miss the train. You’ll, swear, gnaw on your cheek, hating yourself for thinking like this and wait for the next one.
Moments later, you’ll notice a man on the platform standing next to you and feel drawn to him like a super-duty magnet. He’ll pull you with great gravitational force onto the same subway car as him and you’ll sit across from him. He’ll pull out the NY Post. And you’ll think No one reads the paper anymore. But this guy does. He’s the last paper reader alive.
You’ll study his face, this paper reading unicorn, taking it in, trying to make sense of it. He has kind eyes. His mouth is fixed in a perma-smirk. When his smirk spreads to a smile, you’ll realize you recognize that smile. You know him!? This realization will untether you. This is someone you know?! But how? From where? Keep reading »
All those coupled friends of yours, you’re genuinely happy that they’ve found someone whose morning breath makes them giddy. You’re thrilled that you’ll never have to field another late night phone call from them about how they are scared to choke on a ham sandwich and die alone like Mama Cass. Really, you’re glad they found ever-lasting love and left you alone to make a weekend of hand-washing your delicates.
The only issue: the second they fell in love, it’s like they got single amnesia and forgot what it felt like to eat peanut butter straight out of the jar for dinner on a Saturday night. Their memory of what it was like to be relegated to the pull-out couch at Christmas while your brother and his wife get to sleep in your bed was wiped out. They no longer recall what it was like to feel demoralized after going on 100 unsuccessful OK Cupid dates. And this is why they assume that you would like to bird sit for them for the next two weeks while they’re laying on the beach in Aruba. Because you have nothing better to do, right? Well, not really, but that doesn’t mean you want to deal with bird shit. And while you’re at it, here are some more things they shouldn’t assume you’d like to participate in just because you’re single. Keep reading »
He looked terribly handsome as he tossed his shaggy dark hair and laughed just a little too hard at my bad joke. While his posture telegraphed confidence — upright yet leaned back, big smile across his face — the laugh told me, “Whoa. This guy is just a little bit nervous.”
I felt nervous too — a tiny fluttering in my stomach, my palms just a little clammy. First dates have a way of doing that to you.
Only, this wasn’t our first date in the traditional sense. No, this was our first date, err, our first “Preparing for Partnership” session, with the rabbi we want to marry us.
You got to know me years ago on The Frisky as Dater X, the girl who just couldn’t get it right in love, hanging intense excitement on each new guy and feeling mildly to horrifically crushed when it didn’t work out. Dater X, the girl on the hunt for her green zebra—safari jacket on, binoculars at the ready—but only finding red koalas and yellow crocodiles. Keep reading »
I had all sorts of hope when I decided to start dating again after a long hiatus. For the first week, all the online profiles seemed shiny and new, like clickable Christmas presents. I was excited to check my email and see what gifts were waiting under my tree, so to speak.
“You have great style!” “I like Rilke too.” “What kind of writing do you do?” “Want to grab some wine?”
YES! YES! YES! Unwrapping feverishly. Options galore. Hark! The herald angels sing!
Two weeks have passed and I’m like a sulking child, facing the reality that Christmas is fleeting. All discarded tinsel and bows and presents that are no longer new. I’m left to grapple with more disturbing questions like: Why can’t I find it within myself to be attracted to short men? WHY?
I’m talking about when dating fatigue sets. When you’ve binged on dating to the point of nausea. Every profile tastes the same to you. Steaming heaps of pictures of him traveling through India. At a friend’s wedding. His love of Michael Chabon. The Macbook pro he can’t live without. The kind of whiskey he likes to drink. You can’t keep stats straight anymore. Who’s looking for an intelligent woman with a wicked sense of humor and who’s looking for a partner in crime again? You don’t remember. You just show up at the wine bar and figure out who he is once you get there. Keep reading »
I feel like a traitor to my feminist values to admit this, but I expect the guy to pay for the first date. I know, I know! That is the lone issue about which I’m a traditionalist and perhaps it comes from my father. He has taught me myriad important lessons: respect for nature, how to ride a bike, and that men should always pay for the first date, no exceptions. My dad is a true product of the 1950′s and he has long instructed me to leave my wallet at home when I go on a first date (not figuratively—literally don’t bring any cash because the man should pay and that’s that). While I agree with my dad, I’ve chosen to ignore his suggestion and show up on first dates with my wallet … just in case. Keep reading »
“I’m an empty essay, fill me out!” the words beckoned under the Self Summary section of my brand new, totally blank OkCupid profile.
Armed with a Diet Coke and a new resolve, I was actually signing up for online dating, something I hadn’t done in three years. And not because I was in a relationship during that time, but because for the most part I wasn’t dating, first by default and later having decided to take a deliberate break.
After a long dating hiatus, when January rolled around this year I finally felt like I was ready to dive back into the dating pool. My first thought when contemplating dating was, God, please don’t make me online date again! because in the past I’d tried JDate, eHarmony, Chemistry, Match, and Nerve, all to great disappointment and sometimes even despair. My experience with online dating thus far had been that the guys I liked didn’t like me back, and the guys who did like me made me want to flee the state and join the Dating Protection Program. Keep reading »