I’ve been online dating basically since I realized it was an option. For an article for the school newspaper my sophomore year in college, I tried to sign up for eHarmony, but I wasn’t old enough (ya gotta be 21), and so it called me “unmatchable.” After crying to my mom (and um, reading the fine print), I held off on signing up again until I moved to New York.
When I arrived in the city, I signed up for Plenty of Fish, and though I did have a little luck (met a millionaire for the first time!), I was still a little too young for the market; it was easier for me to hit up a bar in midtown to meet a dude over a romantic Bud Light than to fiddle with all those search filters. I ended up meeting my ex when I fell down in front of him on a bus (go figure), and after that relationship ended, I was determined to get over him stat, so I signed up for everything.
I try my best not to cringe when my friends and family give me advice about finding love. I know more often than not, they’re just trying to be encouraging and keep me from becoming a bitter cat lady reading romance novels alone in New York City (gulp)—but sometimes, it can be a little irritating to hear what someone else thinks about my dating life.
Or even worse—when my friends make offhand comments that I’m sure they mean well by (but irk me more than anything else). To name a few: “You know, maybe you should go out more,” “You maybe should go out less, no one meets people at bars these days,” “Have you tried online dating? My friend’s brother’s cousin met her husband that way,” “Maybe it’s because you online date, those guys are just strange. Why are they online anyway?”
Earlier this year, my roommate and I were lazily lounging on our Ikea couch, splitting a bottle of $5 wine and bitching hard core about men. As we went through the annoying guys we were making boring small talk with on Tinder, the ones who matched us on Hinge, and the questionable picks on OkCupid—I kept thinking…we aren’t actually dating.
Until we started the dating pact. Sure it isn’t always easy, but we have each other to keep us going.
We remind each other of all of the reasons why we should go on a date—even when we don’t want to.
I went on a date on Sunday… with my literary agent.
If you could see me right now, you would see a grin ear-to-ear, and if you could get inside my heart, you’d feel it beating frantically out of its chest. There are very few words to describe just how happy – and excited and thankful! – I feel to have someone actively trying to turn this little ‘ole blog of mine into a book. (When it happens, you will all be the first to know, I promise!)
Even so, I was nervous to meet him (and afraid he wouldn’t like me) – but my gut was right: it was two hours of constant rapport, brainstorming and storytelling. And then he said something that just about made me cry:
Over cocktails and appetizers with a friend of mine recently, she caught me up on her current dating life. She’s been seeing a dude for about six months, they go on dates (and sleep over) a few times a week, he’s introduced her to all of his friends, they’ve discussed going on vacation together early next year and she feels like she’s (maybe, kinda, definitely) falling in love with him
So, he’s your boyfriend then?! I asked, excitedly. That’s great!! You’ve been single for a while now!
Oh, no, we’re not like, official, official, she said, taking a quite large sip of wine. We’re seeing each other. And I think we’re only sleeping with one another.
Last week, I decided to do what many dudes do on Tinder: get straight to the point. Now—not every guy I’m matched with goes in straight for the date, some like to be chatty. But most exchange a few niceties before asking for my number and seeing when they can buy me a glass of Pinot Noir. (Saturday, at 8 p.m., in the East Village, if any tall, successful, kind-hearted man is available out there. Somewhere. Anywhere. Anyone. Bueller?)
This time last year, I was having a minor panic attack in the bathroom of a lounge in Flat Iron.
I was a little tipsy and my friend J was trying to calm me down, but there was no getting around my anxiety.
Do you see what I have to put up with out there? Dating SUCKS. It’s seriously the WORST. I tell you J, if I’m single this time next year, I will leave New York. I will go somewhere where it’s better and the guys are better. Seriously, it can’t be THIS bad everywhere.