Dating is an interesting thing. I think it’s something that’s programmed in to us by society from an early age. This idea that an important part of a woman’s life is to find a nice man and fall in love. It’s an idea that’s perpetuated in thousands of rom-coms out there and more recently a bit closer to home.
Apparently I’ve now reached an age where older extended family members have started asking the dreaded question: “So, have you got a boyfriend yet?” Given that there are certain family members I’m still operating on a ‘Don’t ask, don’t tell unless absolutely necessary’ basis with, there’s only so many times I can use the “Honestly, life’s too short for me to waste time on boys, I want to travel the world first.” line before more questions start being asked.
However, despite the fact I do want to travel the world before I settle down, I’m not wholly opposed to the idea of dating. Plus I’m fairly certain that if I do find the right person then when I travel the world they’ll be right there by my side anyway. I don’t want someone who I have to change my life plans or give up my dreams for. I want someone who fits right in, who adds to my plans rather than detracts from them.
Knowing what you want from a partner is easy, finding someone who fits the bill? That’s the hard part. Which brings us back to dating. There’s a joke somewhere that lesbian dating is a bit like finding a job, you either do it online or you’re referred through a friend. There’s definitely some truth in that, though I think that’s the case for all dating these days.
Given that most of my friends, and my friend’s friends, are all happily coupled up that means that my main method of dating ends up being online. I’m not serious enough about dating to sign up for something like PoF or Match.com, so that leaves Tinder. And Tinder is a minefield. Personally I’ve found that Tinder is only really good for swiping when you’re bored, the occasional ego boost when you match with someone hot, and on rare occasions messaging someone a few times before the conversation fizzles out.
I don’t know if it’s just because my tinder game is weak, my small talk skills pathetic, or because I’m just a little bit too weird, but I really haven’t had much luck with Tinder. Of the thousands of people I’ve swiped on I’ve probably only got about a hundred or so matches, only messaged with about 10 of those, and I’ve only had about three “dates” from Tinder. There has never been a second date.
In fact all of the Tinder dates I’ve ever been on have been a little bit weird. Though I think the worst has to be the one with a girl who just drove me around in her car for a while, before pulling in to a carpark, where she proceeded to have a 40-minute phone call with a friend. I’ve never laughed so much on a first date. But that’s purely due to my friend’s running commentary whilst she was on the phone.
It kind of begs the question of if dating is so awful why do we subject ourselves to it. And admittedly some people choose not to. But for a lot of us it’s because we dream of that fairy-tale ending. We want to find that person who makes us laugh, who makes us happy, who causes butterflies in our stomachs, and our heart to skip a beat, who makes it feel like fireworks when you kiss, who makes the rest of the world fade in to insignificance when you’re together.
Most of us just want our happy ending.