Online Dating – Yea or Nay?

online dating

 

You’d have to be living under a rock in the middle of nowhere to have no idea or opinions about online dating so I’m curious as to what you think (because obviously you’re not under a rock).    I did the online dating thing myself years ago, after Number One but before Number Two.  At that time, online dating was relatively new and the only common site was what is now Match.com.  (At that time it was Love@Aol.com)  There were dating services, of course.  One of my girlfriends tried out It’s Just Lunch and while she didn’t meet her soulmate or love match, she met a few nice people.  It was an interesting concept – – you pay a fee for something like six dates, you flip through a book of “potentials” and make your selection.  The service or agency contacts that person to see if he or she is interested and if so, you meet for lunch . . . hence, the name.  Kind of like eHarmony without the online presence but with food.

I didn’t meet my love match doing the online thing either but I did meet some interesting people and I did date one of them for a few months.  We should have remained friends and not tried the romance thing but that’s another story.

Hello, I'm a douche who uses online dating to get laid.  Nice to meet you.

Hello, I’m a douche who uses online dating to get laid. Nice to meet you.

I’ve been watching The Online Dating Rituals of the American Male on Bravo (because I am totally Bravo’s bitch but yet another story) and I’m both fascinated and horrified.  It’s like a televised train wreck that you can’t avert your eyes from.  If Lindsay Lohen was part of this, it would be trashy gold.   If this show is representative of what’s out there, we’re all doomed.  One guy (can’t call him a man but a douche would certainly be fitting) uses online dating to get laid.  He’s online 24/7 (thank goodness he works for Daddy) and books at least two dates a night to cover all his bases.  He suggests specifically looking for overweight women or women who used to be overweight because they have self-esteem issues and are much easier to get into bed.    Another one was dumped by his girlfriend five years ago and it so traumatized him, now he’s an asshole.  He wants very young women (think 21) who are physically perfect but they don’t need anything going on mentally because he wants to mold them anyhow.  Their kneecaps better not be too big and their breasts and waists had better be in perfect proportion.The show has only aired twice, so far, and these are the douchier candidates.  I will say the “nice guy” in the first episode did seem exactly that and the “nice guy” in the second one seemed okay, albeit high on dorky pills.  But is this reality?  Or are they simply reality “stars” who are playing a part?

I’ve also read that something like 79% of the males that are online on these sites are actually already married or in relationships.  If true, online dating is this era’s version of the dive bar.    One of my girlfriends questioned where we are supposed to meet men if not online?

It’s a depressing thought, isn’t it?  Is online our only option?  What do you do if you’re a nice, attractive woman over 40 who either isn’t trophy wife material (or doesn’t have the desire) and/or is out of the childbearing/rearing arena?

So give me some love, friends, and tell me what you think.  Is online dating for you?  Have you met anyone worthwhile or is it just a scam?   Is it worth participating in or are you just setting yourself up for hurt or embarrassment?   I’m listening . . .

 

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Sensible or Cynical?

imagesIt’s inevitable that at some point during or following your divorce you will question whether you want to give it another shot (marriage, I mean, not your ex — although shooting your ex is tempting).   I have come down firmly on the side of the “hell no, I’d rather cut my tongue off with a rusty knife than marry again” and it’s confused some people.

Let me explain.  This is my second divorce.  My second failed attempt at what is quite possibly the most important decision you can make in life.    I will take some blame for the failures of my marriages but in suffering through this second divorce I have realized that my two former spouses have a lot of dysfunctions and general fuckeries in common.  Clearly I do not choose well in the husband department.  So doesn’t it make sense to realize that my picker is broken, or at least severely compromised, and graciously remove myself from the marriage arena?

I think so but I have been told multiple times “third time’s the charm!”  Well, what about people who have been married four or more times?  They must have thought the third time was the charm also . . . and it wasn’t.

Someone also told me that if I quit, if I throw in the proverbial towel, that Number Two wins.  Maybe . . . but is this a game?  Possibly it was for Number Two, Douche Du Jour that he was,  but not for me.  So does it matter who “wins?”

I guess my question then is this – – am I being sensible in refusing to consider a future marriage or am I being cynical?

What say you, brilliant readers?

When Are You Truly Free?

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It’s been many months since I last posted.  A lot has gone on in my life and yet, not enough has changed.

By that I mean I am still legally married.  Ugh.  Sad but true.  Not through any procrastination on my part but rather Number Two – – who couldn’t wait to move on from me less than twenty-four hours after telling me he was done with our relationship – – suddenly seemed to find finalizing our divorce not exactly a priority.  Why?  No idea and I guess it doesn’t really matter.  It’s just incredibly frustrating.

So I’m still working with that, still working on getting myself legally free of him and what do you know?  Valentine’s Day hits.

I hate Valentine’s Day.  I always have had a hate-hate relationship with it, even when I have been part of a couple.  It’s a bullshit “holiday” that exists only to make single people feel bad about themselves.  What is that about?  Let’s pick a day to celebrate love and lovers and exclude a great part of the population!  Awesome!

I chose to go to an event that was supposed to be a social thing, to meet people and not necessarily in the male-female pair off sense.  And yet it felt just like that.  I felt uncomfortable and realized that while I have moved on in my life, I’m just not free yet.  I’m perfectly happy going out with my friends to just have fun and hang out but I’m not in a place (yet) where I am ready to become a duo again.

My question to you, lovelies, is are you truly free?  How long did it take for you to become free?  Care to share any war stories?

Game Show Hostesses Need Not Apply

imagesCAHPMEHBThis may sound like a crazy question but stick with me, okay?

Can you be subjected to too much positivity at times?  Don’t you have those moments where you just need a “woe is me” minute?  Or hour?  Or day?  And if you do, isn’t that okay?

I am not a depressive person generally.  My instances with depression have always been connected to men (go figure).   But there are occasions when I am feeling blue and I just don’t want to hear “You are so much better off now!”, “Embrace this change!”, “Better now than later . . . “, “He obviously wasn’t right for you”, “Now you are free to find a better man!”, etc.  Honestly, with regard to statement 1, no shit.  Statement 2 (and remember this is when I’m feeling blue), fuck the change right now.  Statement 3, maybe but it all sucks and say that again and you will find yourself face planted on the pavement three flights down.  Statement 4, oh really?  Where were you when I asked your opinion on him before I committed?  Statement 5, contrary to popular opinion, when you are in the midst of a divorce the last thing you truly need is yet another man (or woman) to invest yourself in.  Please.

I have a friend who means well and has a great heart but last week I wanted to string her up and slime her.  I had a bad week.  A horrible week.  I didn’t need to hear any of the above statements.  I didn’t need to be reminded how much better my life was going to be and how I needed to stop thinking about all this (AS. IF.) and focus on how great I am.  Again, I know she means well but what I wanted to hear was “Your ex is a total asshole!” (heard from someone else, thank you).  Or “I’m sorry, it’ll get better” (heard from someone else, thank you).  Or “Look at that picture of Robert Downey, Jr. – – isn’t he HOT?” (heard from someone else, thank you).  Or just “I’m sorry” (heard from someone else, thank you).

You know, sometimes those of us going through the apocalypse of divorce just need to vent.  We don’t always need a cheerleader to remind us of how awesomely, wonderfully positive this major life change will be for us.  We don’t always want people to act like our mother and tell us to snap out of it.  We know we need to snap out of it (eventually) and we know our life will eventually get back on track and improve.   And while we’re blue, while we’re grieving, it’s always appreciated to know that what we’re feeling is okay. It’s normal.

tumblr_lnthsta9V01qc630fo1_400Said friend above who is dangerously close to a sliming has the unfortunate habit of asking me almost daily how I feel, if I’m better, what I’m doing, etc.  When I am feeling particularly bitchy I consider saying “I was just about to hang myself from my shower rod but I guess I can wait until after this call.” or “I’m so glad you called!  How long does it take lye to destroy a body?”  But that would probably increase her worry about my mental state and therefore increase the phone calls.   I don’t mind that she’s checking up on me; in fact, it’s nice to know that if you go off the grid for more than eight hours, someone notices.  However . . . being constantly asked how you’re doing and feeling makes me feel as though I’m on a specific timetable for overcoming grief and getting through this divorce.  I certainly don’t need that.

Talk to me.  Do you have friends or family that you feel have you on a grief timetable?  Are you currently blue over your loss?  Do you think there can be moments when sunshine and roses just isn’t acceptable?  Do you miss the original The Price is Right as much as I do?

One Step Forward, Two Steps Back

1-forward-2-backOh regression, how I hate you.

Maybe I should have known.  Having been split for six months and seeming to deal with it incredibly well emotionally . . .  Sure, a few sad moments here and there, that’s to be expected – especially around certain landmarks like birthdays, anniversaries or even hearing a familiar song that may trigger a memory.  My sad moments became full-fledged days of depression last week.  Not the type of depression that led me to a freeway overpass (melodramatic, yes) or unable to get out of bed (more realistic) but the kind where I felt as though the split had just happened.

All I could think of was my ex.  Not pining for him, absolutely not.  But feeling hurt and betrayed all over again.  Feeling angry and wanting to punch his face in, even as I remembered all the things that had drawn me to him in the first place (and questioning my sanity, as well as my sobriety levels).   Feeling anxious and scared about my future.  Would I ever find anyone to love again?  Would anyone love me again?  Would I want them to?  What if I was alone forever?  What if Number Two went on with his life without me?  What if he was happier?   What if he was more successful?  What did this mean for Thanksgiving?  Who invented Cheez Whiz and why?  (Okay, that one I stole from one of the funniest movies of the 80s – – The Sure Thing.  Haven’t seen it?  Get to it, John Cusack fans.)

Maybe the worst is the sleep (or lack thereof) issue.  I have a brand new bed.  It’s fabulous.  I have brand new sheets on my brand new bed.  They are fabulous.  I can sleep with my window open because it’s what I want – – plus it’s quiet – – so that’s fabulous.  Yet I am still tossing and turning and every damn dream involves my ex is one way or another.  So not fabulous.

And yes, I know.  My subconscious is at work.  It’s working overtime and it’s driving me crazy.  And I know that eventually it will go crawl into a hole until I’m stressing about Christmas or (hope against hope) I meet someone else that sets my heart aflutter.  But for now it sucks ass – – I’m tired and I’m a grouchity grouch when I get tortured sleep.

The stressed out stomach could be good, if I was losing numbers on the scale the way I wished I would.  And if I was at home where stomach cramps aren’t nearly as annoying and embarrassing as at work.  It’s a fact that if you ever have stomach issues at work, it will be the day all your bosses are in or you are stuck on a conference call or in a meeting . . . or the most gorgeous man ever sets foot in your office.  Irony is a cruel bitch.

So what do YOU do when you find yourself regressing?  It’s easy to know that it’s a normal part of the grieving process but how to accept that and still go about your daily life without strangling the impatient and rude woman in the grocery store checkout line or burst into tears when someone makes eye contact with you or launch into your sob story when making idle conversation?   (Okay, so I haven’t strangled anyone . . . yet).

Just Get Over It

If you are divorced or going through a divorce, chances are that you’ve heard the above sentiment.

I have.  Both times.  “It’s been (insert length of time) .  Aren’t you over it yet?”  “Stop thinking about him/them/it and move on!”  “You’re never going to get over it unless you stop thinking about it.”  All well-meaning comments, surely, but all woefully inappropriate, incorrect and inconsiderate.

First, there is no timetable for grief.  And have no doubt, divorce is a grieving process.  It’s like a death, sure, only worse because there is no finality and closure as when someone dies.  Your ex continues to walk around, potentially populate the earth and make you miserable rather than being buried under six feet of earth.  Some people may work through their grief in half the time it takes others.  It’s okay.  There is no right or wrong timeframe for healing, despite what others may tell you – – including some of the books on the shelves today.  And most definitely don’t look to celebrities for guidance – – I have been separated from Number Two since March and am still hurting and grieving.  I’m sure some in the celebrity realm would think I was an oddity for not yet having my next engagement lined up.   I am still grieving because the life I thought I had, that I thought I would have, is gone.  It’s devastating to suffer such a loss . . . and that’s okay.

Secondly, of course you’re thinking about your ex, your relationship and what you’re going through.  No shit, Sherlock!  There is nothing wrong with that.  It’s how you move forward and get to the other side.  Maybe it’s all-consuming right now but it won’t always be.  Each day the thoughts may lessen.  The only time there should be concern is if you can’t get out of bed, you’re missing work and/or you are figuring out the distance from your window to the pavement below.  Again, people mean well but if they haven’t gone through it — and especially if your split was precipitated by lying, cheating and/or abuse – – they assume that you should just be grateful you are no longer with the asshole and have no more feelings or thoughts about it whatsoever.  If you didn’t have feelings or thoughts about it, even months later, you wouldn’t be human and your relationship wouldn’t have been genuine.

Third, you don’t just get over divorce. You can get through it, as you would any type of loss or setback, but you don’t “get over it”.  Those people who do are the ones that immediately move from person to person (like Numbers One and Two) to avoid dealing with any emotional fallout.  That is what is not healthy and not normal.   When someone has lost a job, do people say “Get over it!”  Generally not.  Most people have sympathy and offer to help in ways they can.  So why are we so critical of people who are separated and divorced and insistent upon them getting back out there and moving on?  The loss of a relationship, of a home, of a way of life is much more stressful and serious than the loss of a job (although losing a job sucks too).

So if you’re grieving, it’s okay.  You’re not doing it the wrong way (unless you’re bottling up your emotions, refusing to acknowledge them and/or jumping into a serious relationship immediately to avoid dealing with your feelings).  Just be gentle with yourself and surround yourself with those people who will encourage you, support you and uplift you, not criticize you or tell you what you should be doing.  Accept the loss at your pace and do what you can to embrace your new life, the new YOU.   Know there will be bumps along the way and even setbacks.  It doesn’t mean you’re failing, it means you’re human.

Let’s talk.  Has anyone told you to “get over it”?  Have you felt pressured by well-meaning friends and family to speed up your grieving process?  What’s the best advice anyone has given you on getting through your loss?

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Miracle Monday #3

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What am I grateful for today?

I am grateful for my girlfriends. It’s said that you never know who your real friends are until you’re in a crisis and that is so true. Real friends won’t just say they are sorry to hear about your split, they will go the extra mile by holding your hand when you need to cry, help you pack/unpack/move, force you into getting off your butt to go out and have that margarita! They will listen to you debate over the most irrelevant minutae of your relationship and assure you that everything will be fine and you won’t be all alone one day with twenty cats.

Do you have girlfriends like this?

What are you grateful for today?