Online Dating – Again!!?
I took the plunge into Online Dating again this week. Maybe I’ve been watching too much of The Bachelorette! I too felt the need to start looking for Love again. It’s been a very long while! Much longer than Sam chose to wait. (Or was she pushed?) I suppose youth makes us more resilient. Age makes us more cautious when it comes to matters of the heart.
Has it been a huge success? – Not really!
Firstly, the dating site sends me ‘Matches’ which don’t match my profile at all.
Then, the men I send a contact to don’t want to be in touch with me, then someone sends a contact they have paid for and even though I am specific about height being a ‘thing’ this man is 2 inches shorter than me! So, that’s 2 inches, plus any short fall due to aging which can amount to another inch, then add on any heel height I might include, even an inch in ‘flat’ shoes, then you have a total of at least, well, potentially 4 inches. Ok, 3 inches if I have also lost an inch due to aging. Even so. Not the scenario I see happening for myself. I know that some people have no problem with the woman being taller than the man and with heel heights being fashionably 3- 4 inches, it is not unusual to see. However, it’s not for me.
I like a taller man.
But I digress.
Online Dating… How painful is it!?
You look at a photo and read a little bit of a bio. Sometimes it’s a one liner! – In which case I’m scrolling on past…!
The photo shows the guy to advantage. With a large fish. Beside a bar with glass in hand. On a fishing boat. Beside a fast car. On a large motorbike. All truthful. All showing the interests of the man in the profile. Nothing wrong with that. Maybe.
Imagine if you will, a Single Man. Mature in years, (over 40 at least), hurt by Love, Divorced maybe, Widowed possibly, Separated, a little bruised by relationships. He decides or is persuaded by his friends and family, to join an Online Dating website or two. He puts up some pictures, says some words about what he thinks women need to know about him to be interested enough to make a contact and he ticks all the boxes required by the website to get through the ‘Assessment’ process.
(Just replace He/Him with She/Her and I am guilty of the same along with all the other women on the opposite side of the dating website coin.)
My question is,
Is that all there is to this man?
If you look at a photo of this man, you don’t see the glimmer of amusement in his eye as he tries to figure out how he ended up on the dating scene at age 56, the timbre of his voice as he talks to you, the look of Connection as he is surprised and pleased in realising he made a good decision to come out tonight.
You don’t see; the warmth of his smile when he talks of his children,
the moment of pleasure that flickers across his face when he talks of his pet dog,
the heartbreak he shows a glimpse of, when he talks of his divorce.
Or the pain of losing his wife so young to a cancer he didn’t understand and couldn’t defend her from.
It seems to me as I find myself scrolling through all of these eligible, hopeful men that I have no chance whatsoever of getting to know any of them unless I have a face to face conversation with them in a quiet space over coffee or dinner.
However, unless I look like a young Sophia Loren, or a perky sporty fit and fun girl (!) I don’t get that chance.
The expectation is that we all can attract a younger, fitter healthier version of who we are because that’s what we, quite rightly, think we deserve.
The reality of the situation is that we don’t know what the chemistry is which can cause an attraction to another. The spark which ignites in us a flame of desire to spend more time with that person is only lit by meeting face to face and FEELING the response to the other person.
Two dimensional contact can’t possibly show us the truth about a person. We can’t make a real connection. It is looking in the eyes and breathing in the pheromones that surround them which gives us the ‘truth’ of the attraction, the feeling, the connection we are looking for.
Not the written words or the photo of you with the big fish you caught 10 years ago.
So what did I learn from the foray into Online Dating territory?
Pretty much what I already knew from my past experiences, I’m sorry to say.
The experience hasn’t improved over time. And I didn’t enjoy it as much as I did before.
Maybe I’m getting old. And putting myself ‘out there’ in the Perth Singles scene is not my ‘thing‘ any more.
However, one thing I did learn for certain is that I was completely right to start Plus One Dinners. Because I need it as much as anyone else does.
I NEED the opportunity to sit and talk to potential suitors. Single men over 58 is my criteria and I want to get the opportunity to sit and talk to them and let them see I’m not the sum of my awkward, Self-Conscious photos.
I want them to see that I can dress well.
I can hold a conversation, I am reasonably informed about life and I’m not a shrinking violet.
I can be soft and empathetic as well as being assertive when I need to.
I’m looking for LOVE just like them. And just like you.
If, once again Love comes via an online dating website I will be surprised. I think that ship has sailed.
If I meet someone at a Plus One Dinner I actually won’t be surprised.
It’s a perfect setting and quiet environment for many good conversations and fun getting-to-know-you opportunities. As well as good food!
A Win – Win situation.
Was Sam Frost rushed into The Bacherlorette?