It’s crazy, isn’t it? Here you sit with your broken picker wishing for adult connection, still aghast that the same Timid Forest Creature who was so bold to ask someone out while inconveniently married to you is out doing all the fun things while you mah jong along, playing solitaire as a matter of mental health and basic principle.
You should be more evolved, they say. Get out there! The easiest way to get over her is to get onto someone else! Cheating happens! Move on!
But you know it’s scary out there. You kind of look over across town to where ex’s Free Love Bonobo Monkey Circus is playing and you feel a little sick. It didn’t feel very evolved when you opened up the phone bill and called the number that was on there 5,000 times to ask the newly-secretly-impregnated-work-friend what the nature of her friendship with husband exactly was.
And it wasn’t very evolved at all for her to not call you back and just say, “Hey lady. I fuck your husband. That’s what I do. Cheating happens. Get out there and date! It’s what I do!”
(A talking primate like that would really impress Esther Perel.)
But I digress. You want my advice how to date without getting hurt? How to find the ONE? I can’t tell you. Because you will be hurt and there will be creeps and you might not find THE ONE. But I guarantee if you approach dating the same way you approach friendships, there will be delicious meals, outings and good times. And some serious WTF stories to share.
Where to start? Always start a few levels out from your immediate circle. Let friends know you are looking to date and what you’re looking for. The beauty of meeting people in real life is that you have some semblance of vetting them out. It doesn’t have to be an elaborate set up. You could just both be conveniently invited to the same barbeque.
Another option is online dating. Yeah, I said it. Match the platform to your level of interest and go. This option will require you to be mentally strong, not easily offended, and able to handle rejection. I know you’re sitting there thinking NOOOOOOOOO. I’m thinking yes. Each and every one us has had the person we loved most reject us for another. Bottom line. And you’re telling me that if a stranger doesn’t dig you life is over? Nope, nope nope. Look at you. You lived through cheating, and that makes you kind of bulletproof.
I venture to say that we should all take note from Dolly Parton and be adorable and not give a fuck. The old story goes that Colonel Tom Parker wanted Dolly to give up songwriting credit to have Elvis Presley cover “I Will Always Love You.” Her songwriting was very important to her, so she told him to piss right off. Whitney Houston asked for no such quarter, just sang the heck out of that song and made Dolly Parton millions. So stick to what you know is true, and give away all the fucks. You are bulletproof.
Make a profile that shows you doing stuff you like to do. And your face without filters or photoshop. And full length shots, even if you’re curvy. Keep your kids out of the photos, but say you have some. Your profile should say what you want in life and a partner, not list all the wrongs and tragedies done you, I would like to think. That’s what I gravitaite to anyway.
Dudes? Nobody cares about photos of your boat, your motorcycle or your fishing lures. Any woman will be delighted with those later, but they want to know you. Chubby? You would be surprised at the fit dudes who like a little curvy. Bald? Quiz your friends’ wives. Bald is cool.
Ladies, you will get hundreds of responses. 80% are creeps who want to get busy with you and never call you again. As Miss Lauryn Hill sings, That Thing, That Thing, That THiiiiiing. Some will be so bold as to describe themselves as “Catholic, and Serious about It!” and greet you by saying how pretty your lips would look on their junk. The correct response is to laugh. The correct response is always to laugh. And delete and block. Rinse and repeat. Hand Sanitizer is optional. On second thought, yes to hand sanitizer.
Friends, you will experience ghosting. This is radio silence after having a date/dates/deep conversation. The correct response is whatever you think fits. Tear the ghost a new one. Text them ghost emojis. Then a week later when they text you, you can ignore it. Or say ‘What the hell are you playing at?” Or tell them you are too busy playing Mousetrap and American Girl Doll Salon, which in my case is often 100% true. And playing with Game of Thrones toys.
Ladies, a dude will ask you what you wear to bed. And the correct response is always a potato sack, orthopaedic clogs and horsehair panties. Always.
Gentlemen, strange women you have not met may want you to pay for a $150.00 dinner with only the distant prospect of seeing them naked. Stop worrying about when you will see them naked. Go out for tea or a cocktail or ice cream instead. Date a feminist who takes her turn paying. Invite her to do things you actually like to do and if she hates them, she’s not gonna like you.
The point is to have fun. My goal is to have fun. Not shallow fun, not getting laid. To be out in the world enjoying activities with someone who has a story, and a heart I might like to know. And okay, I might get laid. If I’m lucky.
Cue Daft Punk. I’l be the one rocking out in the horsehair panties and orthopaedic clogs on Match.com!