I felt reluctant to go on last night’s date. I matched with him on Bumble and we exchanged numbers after a day or so. He seemed more keen than I was, probably because my trust in people’s profiles had been depleted since my previous date. We were texting for a week before we met! This is way past my 3 day texting rule where I like to message for a few days, meet up and then decide (or have decided) ‘yes’ or ‘no’; not wasting very much time.
We had been texting back and forth and I was beginning to wonder whether it would be worth meeting up, or if this would ruin our lovely texting streak.
I decided it was worth the risk as I had no better plans for a Wednesday evening.
He was gorgeous – his photos didn’t do him justice.
Wow, this is rare.
He was friendly and bought me a drink. We chatted and I giggled a lot. But I couldn’t work out if he liked me because his eye-contact was a little lacklustre. (As you know, I have a thing about eye-contact as my ex was more interested in his own reflection than my face). We got on well, there seemed to be a flicker of a spark but I could have called it either way.
After two drinks, he suggested we go on to dinner, or at least more drinks. Had this been a few months ago, before the Fuck Boy Incident, I would have been eager to go, but I chose to leave. I didn’t need to get drunk and snog him for him to like me. I definitely didn’t need to shag him for him to like me. If he likes me, he’d like me after two drinks and a straight-forward date. He was very gentlemanly and walked me to my car, despite it being in the opposite direction to his house. We kissed on the cheek and I drove home wondering what to make of our evening.
Fortunately, it’s 24 hours later and he clearly did like me. The constant texting has resumed and I hope another date is on the cards.
Or maybe some flawed people use dating apps to fetch a girl to date and fuck with her.
In our world of social media and dating apps, we all want to present ourselves in the best light. We put photos up of us having fun, we post silly quips about how hilarious we are with our gorgeous friends and we update our stories whilst we’re sunning ourselves, sipping on a cocktail.
No one ever updates their status with the honesty of feeling down on a Sunday evening, or when all their friends have bailed on a Thursday night.
This wouldn’t get many likes. Of course everyone has had times when they’re a little black cloud on a Sunday evening, or cried to their mum / best friend / housemate when everyone has cancelled and you’re alone with lasagne and re-runs of First Dates (or is this just me..?) But whilst we all know everyone deals with the same lows in their week and whilst no one advertises it on social media, we can be left with FOMO (fear of missing out).
The same is true with dating apps; we carefully select 3-5 photos of us that display our personality – do we have an interesting hobby?, that show us looking our best (never on a Sunday morning, hungover in bed post-vomiting in the loo for the 3rd time that morning) and show that we are wonderfully dateable because we are so smiley and popular.
I was shocked when I met a guy the other week who looked NOTHING like his profile picture, save for the fact he was a man and had the same skin colour as the man in his photo. But that was it. Yes, we put our best photos up, but they have to be accurate.
I knew, instantly, that there wasn’t going to be a second date.
But, not one to be rude, I walked around Camden with him, finding a decent place for a drink. He was nice, he tried to be funny. I was charming. Sadly, he wasn’t for me.
Maybe the warning sign should have been the SINGLE photo he put up, rather than 3-5, but I was optimistic and he was lovely (and very cool) over our messages.
Regardless, maybe he picked up on my standoffishness because he didn’t message over the next few days, then I deleted him.
Or at least, the promise of one.
My friend has been speaking to a guy on Bumble. He’s invited her to join him at an exclusive fetish club in London.
She says he looks attractive in his profile photos, but this is through a mask. In all 3, part of his face is covered (think Fifty Shades masquerade mask). They’ve exchanged numbers and she’s considering going. The problem is, she cannot see behind the mask.
Naturally, she’s asked for a photo of his face, but he’s not keen to send one.
Apparently, he just wants to ‘fuck the shit out of her’.
Can’t she see his face before?
He says it would spoil the allure…
Frankly, I’m not convinced and told her to steer clear.
I matched with a guy on Bumble and what follows is our very brief exchange:
Him: Hey. Do you want to meet tomorrow for a bit of fun / sex?
Me: I’m a dater, not a one-night stand.
Him: Yes same here. It isn’t a one night stand. Have a bit of fun and go from there.
Me: Not looking for friends with benefits either. After different things. Best of luck with the novel! (He’s writing a book).
Him: Ashame [sic]. I found you incredibly beautiful (interesting he used the past tense – he no longer finds me attractive because I won’t jump into bed with him?) and thought you seem interesting (and clearly he was wrong..?)
Me: – No response –
Him: And I thought you might like a coconut massage.
Me: I’m not one for massages either (laughing face). I find them deeply uncomfortable.
Him: Haha. Well you haven’t had a coconut massage. It’s where you lay on the bed or floor fully naked, I put coconut oil on your back, bum and legs and get on your back naked and slide up and down your body, and the smell of the coconut makes you both relax and the skin to skin contact generates energy between both people.
Was this meant to turn me on? I found this offer disgusting and promptly deleted him.
I have also always wanted to be a Mummy. Growing up in a big, loving family has given me strong family values and when I was younger I presumed I’d be married with a baby on-the-way by the time I turned 27. Evidently, this is not looking likely. And I’m surprised at how little this has phased me over the past few years.
Since I was 15, 27 has been my ‘scary-age’
whereby if I don’t have this, this and this ticked off by then,
I’m gonna panic.
Having fun at Uni and having a good start to my career has put me off reproducing for a few years and being 25 is turning out to be better than I anticipated:
- My social life isn’t covered in a cloud of peer pressure any more
- My friendship circle is full of people who I actually want to be friends with, not just because they’re cool
- I can assert my right to say ‘no’ to things, ‘No, I don’t want a head massage, thank you; just shampoo and conditioner is fine.’
- Sometimes, a Friday or Saturday night can consist of tea, BBC iPlayer and my onesie. And bed by 10pm
- Everything in my wardrobe suits my figure
- My ‘scary-age’ is 2 years away. But it’s really not that scary anymore.
At least it wasn’t, until recently.
For the past 25 years, health has not been my friend. I was born with a heart defect and as I journey through my twenties issues are manifesting themselves. As The Eternal Optimist, I’m remaining positive – although my mum keeps checking in to make sure I’m not depressed or suicidal. The recent manifestation has be a fertility issue:
“Having children won’t be impossible, but it’s going to be very challenging”
Said the hospital technician.
I still haven’t found out the full extent of the baby-making problems, but I know it’s not looking great…
In her book Sex Object, Jessica Valenti noted:
The things you do in your twenties are just things you do. But as you approach thirty what you do starts to become who you are.
This rings true for me in so many ways. I’m a true believer that personality is pretty set and you learn who you are and you shape yourself through childhood, teenage years and into early adulthood. When I first read this, I texted my friend with how this quote is so applicable to one of my exes: he went through the fun times of being a teenager and early twenty-something, but he’s still doing these things and now it’s ingrained in who he is. Therefore – not suitable Husband Material. Likewise, 10 years my senior, The Bar Man is not Boyfriend Material.
But I’ve also realised it isn’t just what I do that determines who I am, it’s also what happens to me and how I deal with it. Knock-down has followed knock-down in my dating life. Boys haven’t been kind and my stead-fast resilience has been tested.
And then we add fertility complications to the mix.
Being 25 and single is totally fine. And I’m enjoying dating people and seeing what happens. But I think I’ll now be a little more discerning when choosing someone to date; I can’t waste the latter half of my 20’s with fuckboys.
We’ve known each other for ages. We’ve exchanged flirty messages for months. We finally met up a few weeks ago; right when I had hit rock bottom with guys and needed to inject some fun back into my life. The date was so easy, it felt natural and right. I went in knowing you were a fuck-boy; basically my ex – plus 10 years. I didn’t feel I was repeating history – it was evident this is who you are from the get-go. All I needed was a bit of fun.
I had no interest in being in a relationship with you. This was just going to be dating and hooking up. Our encounters happened on school nights; with frequent promises to get together at the weekend. Then you went M. I. A on me. The promises of a Saturday night were empty. Turns out, you’re one of those guys who feigns enthusiasm for an evening and then doesn’t show up.
When we did get together again (on a school-night, no less) you asked me what this was for me. Wow, the novelty and excitement of a guy showing interest! He’s cool just seeing each other once a week, but would love to see me more if I can fit him in – cute giggles and kisses here.
Then that was it. No message since. And as much as this is fine, because I had no interest in seeing you, we’re mates. And therefore, that makes this not okay.
Trying to work out what I want from a relationship has been tricky, and through making mistakes in dating people, I’ve mainly discovered what I don’t want. But on Saturday night I figured it out with a friend. What I want is balance.
I want someone who balances with me:
- They have similar life aspirations
- They are at the same stage in their life
- They have similar outlooks for life
- They have a similar attitude about a social life and maintaining a work / life balance
This follows from another bad date this weekend. Having spoken for only a handful of days, and seeing only one photo of Mr Fake, I didn’t have my hopes up. But I can’t complain about being single if I’m not being proactive in pursuing a relationship. When he approached me at our meeting point, I was a little shocked, he was not this tall, slim, tanned man I was anticipating on meeting. Quite the opposite. Not one for being rude, I was polite and chatty and we had a few drinks in Camden Lock, in the lunchtime sunshine. There was no chemistry. His kind and intelligent personality sadly didn’t make up for the fact that I felt totally tricked into a meet up.
I discovered he isn’t one for a social life, and work takes up all of his time (and I got the impression this was because he allowed it to, rather than by necessity). The chat wasn’t my style; it was forced at times and I felt judged for being hungover post-Shoreditch party. He referred to himself as ‘an old man’.
Ermm… no thanks.
We wouldn’t have worked, even if I felt compelled to try.
Because weren’t balanced.
In a world where Millenials are glued to their phones, let’s have a reality check:
Waiting by our phones isn’t achieving what we hoped it would.
Having our phones to hand isn’t making our future love interest call.
Checking Whatsapp isn’t going to prompt them to message.
So let’s put our phones down. Fortunately, we don’t live in a world where we can ‘un-send’ a message. The text / Whatsapp / Bumble tone goes off. And that message or connection will still be there whether you check your phone instantly or later. Let’s engage with the people around us. Let’s appreciate our home towns whilst we walk through them for the upteenth time. Let’s watch a whole movie without checking into Facebook. Let’s finish cooking dinner, hoovering the house, blow-drying our hair, replying to emails, tidying our room without checking our phones.
Let’s fill our time with things that make us more interesting people (Polly Vernon reckons this is the ultimate goal, and I totally agree with her).
Why pine after someone you don’t even know? Why think of ourselves as missing someone when we’re single? Surely we’re enough? We have to be enough! Otherwise, it’ll be a very depressing existence; after all, we’re with ourselves for our entire lives; we’re the ones in our heads all the time.
Let’s keep ourselves busy. Let’s surround ourselves with people who add value to our lives. Let’s engage with activities that improve us as individuals. Let’s spend our free time developing an aspect of ourselves – health, fitness, mental health, happiness, career, a hobby…
Show yourself, and everyone around you, that’s it’s okay to be single. And you’re owning it.
And if you can’t do that…?
Shhh. The placebo effect will do the rest.
I’ve tried nearly all the dating sites / apps out there and Bumble is definitely up there with the best ones. I’ve successfully managed to talk to guys, convinced them that they wanted to go on a date with me, fallen into bed with them and then pined to my girlfriends about being ghosted.
I’m not claiming to be an expert in How To Date Men, in fact, this blog is a case-in-point in how little of an expert I am. However, I’ve worked out a few ways in which I can actually get guys to respond to me, and here they are: (bare in mind that with Bumble, the girl has to talk first, hence why this is all about getting a response).
- Be Swipe Happy. Abuse the judgey-quality of this app. Don’t bother to read people’s bio’s. This (rather ridiculously) is too time consuming; in the past, I’ve found I’ve become hung-up on someone I swiped ‘yes’ to because I liked their photos and bio and I awaited that ‘ping’ of a match, hoping I matched with this guy. If you match with someone, then read a little more about them and start a conversation…
- Start a conversation with EVERYONE you match with. Out of 20 people you match with in a 24 hour period, only about 3 will respond – or is this just me? To maximise your chances of a response…
- Keep it simple. Contrary to popular opinion, writing a lengthy message to say hello, comment on their photos or their profile and ask them a question seems like a waste of time to me. It doesn’t guarantee a response. So far, ‘Hello [insert name here]’ has worked wonders. And if I’m feeling extra sparky, I’ll add a kiss x.
- Bypass all boring chat in the first few messages.
Where do you live? What do you do for work? Why are you on Bumble?Have a giggle, talk shit and discover their [online..?!] personality.
- Be flirty, but not outrageous. A little wink and a suggestive comment gets results.