Online dating tools dating for separated men
Worse still are the car selfies and nephew pics; the weird proliferation of taco and pizza emojis; the men who take it upon themselves to tell you who You’d think that I’d be used to it by now, for I’ve been ghosted again and again, first by Marc after a spontaneous road trip to Montreal; then by Alex after what I thought was a fruitful 12th date; then by Chris after I had nursed him through an LSD trip; then by Ben after he had introduced me to his 10-year-old son.
Perhaps I take these vanishings especially to heart, recalling to me as they do the unsolved mystery of my ex-husband’s disappearance.
I’ve met United Nations diplomats and my favorite movie star’s ex-husband.
I have spent a summer dog-sitting in Los Angeles and flown to Jamaica for a third date; licked cocaine off car keys and undressed at midnight in a Barcelona square.
In a matter of minutes I would map out a new life for myself, one that fit the mold of whatever man I was messaging. But I soon noticed that the flip side to the disappointment of each mismatch or aborted romance was a mounting sense of strength and self-sufficiency, a hardening of character, a greater understanding of the woman I am when I’m intact.
Perhaps that’s why, when I first went online, I was so susceptible to fantasy. Juan and I would move to Uruguay and raise his teenage daughters!
Now, over three years and seven dating apps later, I’ve gone out with 86 men and counting; I know because I keep a list that reads like free verse (“David the orphan … Yes, online dating can be deeply demoralizing, a parade of indignities that throws into relief not just our self-absorption and banality, but our nihilism too.
If I stumble upon one more man who seeks a “partner in crime,” one more “sapiosexual” or “entrepreneur,” I fear I will stomp on my phone.
But I would think that who finds herself confronted by such baffling cowardice must suffer from them.
(And I should acknowledge, too, that I have also behaved badly at times, failing to write someone back once real life takes hold or sending squirmy messages in lieu of a clean break.)But for all this, what I’ve gained from online dating far exceeds what I have lost.
For weeks I had been holed up in my family’s empty summerhouse, writing, and I worked all that day, caught up in a kind of luxuriant self-consciousness that has since become familiar — that acute sense of self and solitude that binding oneself to an outsider can at times unleash.