One Year of Dating

One year ago, I dipped my toe back into the dating pool after spending some time recovering from a rather shocking and heart-wrenching breakup. Most people I went out with were Bumble matches. A lot of people get down on online dating, but I’ve always found it be better than meeting a random person in a bar. Like social media, it’s all about how you use it and how much value you assign to the interactions you have with it. I’m a casual dater who generally just has fun with it. It also helps that I’m a writer because even if there is no romantic connection, I enjoy listening to people’s life stories. I’ve gathered so much material from all the people I’ve met. And I met a lot of people over the last 365 days. Let’s count them.

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Bumble Beeline

I paid for Bumble. I felt slightly weird about it at first—like there was something wrong with my ability to get the dates I wanted otherwise—but actually I know several people my age who pay for it. And if no one paid, those apps would’t exist. So given all my years of using the apps for free, maybe it was my turn to contribute. Turns out, I really liked the features I got with a paid account. It was nice to be out of the urgent swiping game and able to browse everyone who liked me whenever I wanted. I was able to make more conscious and careful decisions about who to initiate a chat with and who to go out with. When you can only see one person at a time, you waste a lot of time messaging with people you are on the fence about because you have to select yes or no immediately to be able to see the next person. Bumble Beeline allowed me to keep those “maybe” guys on hold for a rainy day without having to engage them in conversation. Continue reading →

Under the Mistletoe

It’s been five months since I wrote about my dating exploits. Half of summer and, as of today, all of autumn has gone by. So, you may be wondering what gives? What does the silence mean? Nothing really. I dated some people for longer amounts of time than my usual one and done, I took some time off from dating, and then I got back out there after a lot of swiping left. Here’s what I found. Continue reading →

Just Say No

After a summer of first dates and a steady fling, I’ve been taking some time off from dating. I’m feeling happily solitary at the moment, as you might have surmised from my last post. All I want to do is work out, hike, read, and do creative writing projects. But I still have my dating profile up and look at profiles for a few minutes almost every day. It’s an addiction. Many of the guys I see seem great, but when it comes to the idea of spending my time going to meet someone and making chitchat for an hour or two, I’m simply not interested. And maybe I’m too picky, but men’s profiles make it so easy to reject them. Aside from my usual reasons (has kids, is ex-military, doesn’t seem to have an active lifestyle, doesn’t seem to have any intellectual interests, didn’t write anything in his profile, wearing sunglasses and/or a hat in all his photos, simply not attractive), here are some of the many snap judgment reasons I have for swiping left. Continue reading →

One Date, Two Date, Last Date, New Date

During the last two months, I’ve found myself undecided at the end of many first dates. This isn’t normal for me. I’m generally a clear yes or no, and I tell the guy exactly what I’m thinking. But lately I’ve been giving guys second and third dates because I haven’t been sure of my feelings, which, as I should know about myself by now, actually means I’m not interested. If I don’t have an overwhelming “wow” feeling at the end of date one, it really is a waste of my time to go on more dates because that feeling won’t magically appear. And yet, I’ve been doing it anyway because a lot my dates were really great guys I wanted to like. Continue reading →

When A Writer Dates

The number one rule of being a writer is that you have to write. This is the same in any pursuit (say, dating). If you want to be good at it, you have to do it regularly. You need to write a lot of crappy words to come up with the good ones and you need to go on dates with a lot of duds to find the right one.

Writing and dating intersect in the online world. A blank profile is useless. You must be able to write one that attracts the type of person you are looking for, and when you match, you must be able to carry on a decent written conversation long enough to get to the in-person date. And if the person you want to date is a writer, well, you had better have some serious writing skills. Because we’re judging. It’s inevitable. In addition to physical attraction, my willingness to meet someone is based largely on how well they abide by the rules of good writing. Continue reading →

Seeing Who’s Out There

As promised, my dating recaps are back. There are a few new (or new to me) dating apps out there since last summer that I’ve tried (Hinge and The League, for example), but I still find that Bumble has the most potential and attractive dates and has a format I prefer. So, I’ve been on there matching, unmatching, connecting, ignoring, and sometimes managing to fit in a date or two into my busy schedule. And when I do go out, of course I come home and take copious notes on everything the person did and said, and everything that transpired between us. People are always fascinating and get my creative juices flowing, even when they do nothing else for me. I primarily use my notes for fiction characters and keep these people anonymous, but I enjoy putting a little record out there for the public too. So here we are, first with two of my dates from last summer never who got their recap because their status was in progress at the time of my dating last post. Continue reading →

Summer Lovin’

It’s not technically the last day of summer, but it has been a long time since you last heard mention of my dating adventures. And as this entry posts to my blog, I’m somewhere over the Atlantic Ocean heading back from two and a half weeks in Europe, which means I’ll have lots to post about my travels in the coming weeks instead of about the men of Boulder. And, one more reason for the timing of this post, today is the six month anniversary of my first date since the big breakup earlier this year, and I have a thing for posting on artificially significant dates. So here goes!

The 3D and Graphic Designer: He’s really sweet and we had a great time together for almost two months, though we rarely saw each other more than once a week. But I knew pretty early on that I wasn’t going to want a relationship with him. Partly, because he’s not a reader. Books are so important in my life and after a five year relationship with another person who didn’t read much and then dating someone who read aloud to me (an unbelievably sexy experience), well, yeah, I just couldn’t. There are a few other reasons I didn’t want anything serious or long term with him, but I really like him as a person and I dated him long enough that I think it would be inappropriate to blab about him here. Continue reading →

Take a Penny, Take a Penny, Take a…

…at some point, you’re supposed to leave a penny, right? This principle applies to conversation as well. Conversation only works if you have at least two people answering and asking questions. Yet a surprising number of men on Bumble seem to be wholly unaware of this basic tenet of human interaction. About 25 percent of the time I message a new match, I get a one sentence reply that fails to demonstrate any interest in me and leaves me without anything worth following up on.

These range from depressing replies that tell me all I need to know about what a waste of time meeting this person in the real world would be… Continue reading →

The Real C Word

The real C word has eight letters, not four.

Children.

Children are the ultimate make or break point of any relationship. They aren’t something you can negotiate on. Or, at least, you really, really shouldn’t. Either you want them or you don’t, and giving in to a partner’s preference is asking for a lot of trouble.

I realize that in my dating age range (35-47 is my comfort zone), it’s difficult to find men who don’t have children and even more difficult to find mature, stable men who don’t have children. In most urban areas, it’s probably a little easier to find these unicorns but in Colorado cities, it’s probably a little harder because people who move here tend to be those attracted to the adventuresome life of rock climbing and backcountry skiing and spending an entire summer hiking peak-to-peak across the state. Those who remain unfettered by paternity tend to be afflicted by Peter Pan Syndrome, which I find most unattractive. So, when I started dating again, I had to ask myself if I could date someone with kids. Continue reading →