Divorce is a bitch. Anyone who has been through it knows this for a fact. Anyone who is friends with someone who has been through it ALSO knows this for a fact. My marriage ended five years ago and I flung myself into the dating world after a friend (one I no longer speak to, but that’s another blog post) after she met her current husband on a Christian dating site. Never take anyone’s advice like that when you’re freshly divorced. Try online dating, she said. It’ll be fun, she said.
I signed up for the free sites and two paid sites and was on my way to a spicy rebound relationship that was sure to heal my bruised ego and start my non-existent love life over from scratch…
You know who created online dating? Satan.
The free sites were my favorite. Guys so eager to meet me that they messaged me within seconds of signing up! I thought it was amazing and downright encouraging. I must be just what these guys are looking for, I thought to myself as I was getting winks and likes and messages galore. “ILLBEYOURHUCKLBERRY” (names changed to protect the innocent even though there are 100 users with that name, at least) sent me a message that went something like this:
IBYHB: You are stunning. What’s a girl like you doing on this site? I was ready to close my account but then your beautiful eyes mesmerized me
Today I would laugh hysterically and hit block without a second glance, but back then he had me at “You are stunning”.
I agreed within milliseconds to give this man my number and meet him for drinks the next day. I felt beautiful and positive that I’d have a boyfriend by the end of the week. Online dating was AMAZING and I wondered out loud why I hadn’t done this sooner. I’d show my ex how desirable I really was. How stunning. How irresistible I was after all those years of marriage. He’d see! Just wait.
The big date rolled around and I met him in a public place. I’d gotten his name the day before and sent a text to my best friend with his name, number and the bar we were meeting at, because safety first and all. In my defense I did look stunning. Then in walked IBYHB and my mouth fell open. He didn’t look like his photos at all. He wasn’t 5’11” either (note to new online daters, women all take 25 pounds off their weight and men all say they’re three inches taller than they are). His eye color wasn’t even the same and his teeth were horrible. I know this sounds incredibly shallow, but I took this as having been misled and lied to. I shook his hand, all the while being disappointed and more than a little angry that I’d driven 35 minutes to meet this man who had completely misrepresented himself online to me. Our conversation started like this:
IBYHB- Well I guess you can see I’m not the guy in the pictures.
IBYHB- I didn’t think you’d go out with me if I sent you my real photos. I hope you’re not mad.
Me- Bartender! Tequila, please. Make it a double.
I ended up staying about thirty minutes and didn’t tell him off (which is so unlike me, but somewhere in the back of my mind I felt sorry for this guy) I let him know that I really wasn’t “ready” to date and got the hell out of that bar. I let him pay the tab. That was the least he could do after such a fiasco.
I went on a few more dates after him but they were all similar. I stopped dating online for years after those experiences.
About three months ago I signed back up. Nothing has changed other than I’m smarter, I don’t put up with lying and I don’t give out my phone number. I’ve told more than one man recently that he should be ashamed of himself expecting that, in our mid-forties, I’d be down for a one night stand and that he, in his balding, dad-bod stupor would be asking me for one.
I’m apparently a glutton for punishment, as I’m still out there, thinking my Prince Charming might be sitting at home on a Saturday night swiping left on photos until he finds his Cinderella.
But what do I know? I’m just That Crazy Girl.
Bartender! Tequila, please! Make it a double.