There’s a lot of reasons why dating is my personal hell. Most of them involve my extreme fear of commitment, but I’ll be honest and say that not wanting to leave my house or put pants on is also a huge factor.
Dating is terrifying. It forces you to interact with strangers in a very deep way. You’ve both agreed to simultaneously judge each other over a reasonably priced meal. And why? Because you both at least have positive feelings towards the other persons appearance? You agreed to it accidentally when you were drunk and he said you seemed nice? She complimented your Seahawks shirt at that Seahawks game you both went to and you realized you both enjoy sporting events? Dating is a lot of pressure.
If I could, I would skip the awkward dating stage and go straight to the part where I can eat food in bed the way I normally do (hint, like the way otters eat), rather than sitting down at a table and using forks and knives. I’d like to be at the point where we know each other and we aren’t worried about impressing each other, and I can go back to my normal way of life. My normal life is basically just a sick and twisted game where I see how long I can go without washing my hair before birds start nesting in it.
But that part takes a long time, and unfortunately you don’t always get a return on all that time you invested. You can spend 4 years of your life falling madly in love with someone, learning about their family, listening to their hopes and dreams, and imagining where you fit into their life plan. But then things change, and you don’t fit together anymore. And then you have to start all over. And by this time you're already a little broken, and it takes longer and longer to trust someone enough to let them see that part of your life.
This happens with short term, less serious relationships too. We do this over and over. Going on dates with people, trying to get to know them, trying to see if we’re compatible. And sometimes it lasts, but most times it doesn’t. Most likely you don’t stay together forever, even if you get married. Because divorce is a thing. Like, a major thing that a lot of people do. The odds are not in our favor. Sorry Katniss.
Basically I’m a broken human being and I just don’t see the point. I know what it feels like to be in love. And I know just how much it hurts when you aren’t in love with someone anymore. I know what it feels like to be completely vulnerable, and I know what it feels like to realize that someone has taken complete advantage of that vulnerability and has used it to hurt you. I know that it’s not worth it. The wonderful feeling you get when you’re in love doesn’t make up for the pain that comes from a broken heart. Sorry to be a buzzkill.
So that’s why I don’t like to go on dates. It’s just not worth it. But I didn’t come to this conclusion quickly, it unfortunately took me a few years to fully understand how much I dislike the act of dating. In those years I relied on the internet to connect me with people that went to the same school as I did, or who had recently moved to LA like I just had. This is the part where you get to laugh.
I went out with a guy I met online a few times. He was actually quite nice, the reason I ended things was because he was too interested in my calves. Like he brought up my calves every time we talked and it made me feel really weird. He wanted me to do all these calf workouts and it was the legitimately the most bizarre thing. But he was very respectful and nice, he never insulted my calves, he just wanted more for them I guess.
I also went on 3 dates with a guy who ended up stalking me for two years. He was an ex Chippendales dancer who also used to deal drugs. He might have been Magic Mike, but I’ll never know for sure. I’ll accept partial blame for that relationship not working out.
I made plans to go out with a guy I met on okcupid, before work became a little too stressful and I had to postpone. After countless texts and conversations of me telling him that I would let him know when I was free, he sent me this:
One time I matched with a slice of pizza on tinder.
One time a homeless man asked me to go on a beach date with him.
I've spoken with SO many men who think it's appropriate to ask me rather inappropriate questions. They assume that since they met me online that all I'm looking for is sex.
And listen, I won’t blame all my relationship problem on the people I’ve dated. I’ll take responsibility too.
One time I dumped a guy because he had too many tattoos.
One time I dumped a guy because he told me he didn’t like to eat fast food.
One time I dumped a guy because he randomly grew a mustache since the last time I had seen him and it freaked me out.
A lot of it is my fault. I keep dating men who are clearly wrong for me, or who are clearly emotionally unavailable. Or I go into a relationship thinking that certain things I said were deal breakers aren't actually that important to me. But they're deal breakers for a reason. NEVER SETTLE, TEAM.
I won’t pretend that I’m unique and special because I’m terrified of getting hurt. I know I’m not the only one who feels this way. And there's really no way to write an essay about my fear of dating without coming across as a very sad, lonely person. I promise I'm not. I just really hate dating and I'm not gonna do it for awhile. I'm much happier focusing on other things that are more important to me right now. Like baking, writing, and accomplishing my career goals. Like not going on a date with a guy and having him stare at my flat chest with disappointment the whole time. You understand.
I am bitter and broken. But you know what? I've never been happier.
Don't forget to join me on Periscope this Sunday, November 1st @ 11am PST! I'll be attempting to make a swiss roll with some fall flavors baked right in. Find me by following @josievorenkamp.
See you there!