At the age of 28, I decided that dating had thoroughly kicked my butt. It seemed as if 99 percent of my friends were engaged or married or having babies; meanwhile, I continued pursuing a breed of man who was never quite able to leave behind his college glory days and blatantly refused to face adulthood. It’s an irresistible combination, I know.
In my early twenties, I had the supernatural ability to hone in on this type of man in the midst of a crowd and can only blame myself for my early dating mishaps. But at some point in my mid-20s, I made a dramatic internal proclamation that I would never seek out this type of man again. But from then on they just came to me. I became the pied piper who attracts the emotionally stunted and unavailable.
The only thing worse than my actual dating history was when I made my friends listen to my tales of woe. This is why, when my friends could take no more, I was finally convinced to give the online dating scene a shot. I had recently undergone an especially rough breakup, to which my sanity, sobriety and eating habits were not responding well, so I figured I had nothing to lose.
The great thing about starting online dating is that everyone immediately jumps on your bandwagon. All of your happily coupled friends will tell you how Greg’s brother Steve was having the worst time finding a girl, but then he joined Match.com and met this amazing girl and they started doing couples power-walking every morning and now they’re engaged! And then there’s your seemingly stoic Goth coworker who stares straight through your soul when you try to give her your signature awkward smile-wave combo (which is usually paired with a small, strangled throat noise, because you were going to say “hi” but then you panicked and decided not to, but the message didn’t quite reach your vocal cords in time). She found a life partner on DemocraticSingles.net who works at a tattoo parlor and now they are blissfully happy together.
With uplifting stories like these — and my obvious cool and breezy nature — online dating was sure to be a success!
I signed up with only mild hesitation, spending just one day reviewing the plethora of dating sites available to the single gal nowadays and a mere 48 hours meticulously composing the most alluring, sophisticated, witty and professional but also totally relaxed online dating profile that any dating site has ever seen. Did I have some cute photos to post? Uh, yeah. Attractive stats? Heck yeah. I’m healthy (thanks to my 10-year commitment to veganism), fit (Pilates!), employed (as a charity fundraiser), and my hair kind of rocks. Intriguing “likes” and “dislikes”? Yup: traveling, reading, hiking with my adopted rescue dogs, gardening. Morals? Well, as previously mentioned, I’m vegan and I do charity work. I also recycle and support my local farmers’ market. Granted, none of those might qualify me for sainthood, but I think it’s a good start at least. Sense of humor? Of course! My friends (and my dogs) think I’m a hoot.
With the creation of a single online dating profile, I had magically transformed into a cyber goddess, a new kind of pied piper who plays her pipe and every attractive, self-actualized, animal-loving, eco-friendly man within a 35-mile radius is sure to come a-runnin’. It was in the bag, right?
And thus began my adventures — and misadventures — in online dating …
Have you tried online dating? Share your stories — good or bad! — in the comments section below.