Hundreds...nay, thousands...nay, millions of words have been written, typed and scrawled about dating. I think the general feeling amongst the masses is this:
It. Is. A. Fucking. Mine. Field.
And I for one am ready to hand in my blast helmet and protection vest.
I have spent countless hours and days with my friends talking about the scene in Dublin. They think I'm cynical and too picky, but I just can’t be arsed with the games and the bullshit anymore. I don't want to just give out my number to the first guy who asks for it, or offer it up to just anyone online. I have gotten random texts from dudes months after we parted ways, looking for casual hook up sex, (more on that later) but for now take it that I have a bullshit filter and I haven’t got the the time or energy to waste on ‘casual dating’ or ‘casual sex’. And since when is sex actually casual? Especially one night stands. For me, these have only led me into a month of torment and prayer, waiting for that ‘oh thank fuck, I’m not preggers’ relief only the appearance of your period brings. No matter how safe I am, that is the only way I will truly believe that I haven’t been impregnated by last night's mistake. He could have doubled up and I could be on the pill and have gone through the absolute mortification of going into the local pharmacy (yet again) to get Plan B, it is only until the red shows that I will fully believe it!
Am I alone in this?
Anyway, I digress. Every now and then I’ll whip out Tinder and swipe right a few times and get matched with someone, hurray! But then I'm met with radio silence. Seriously lads, whats the fucking point if you're not going to bother your arse engaging? Ok, I guess I could be the one to start the conversation and I do sometimes, but seriously do I have to do it every time?
Now I get what Tinder is, I know it’s superficial, I know it’s based on looks alone, I know all of this. I’m under no illusion that Mr. Right is waiting for me through an algorithm. But there is that part of me that thinks maybe this time it will be different. And every now and then you have a chat with someone who actually comes across well, you have a good bit of banter with them, and you think "Ok this is promising, let's do this, let's meet up, go on a date and hey you never know." Maybe this time he won’t turn out to be the creep who follows me into the pub and sits at the bar alone sipping a pint without saying hello. The guy who just sits there thinking he’s well hidden from view and stares over at me and then when he’s called out on his antics, uses the fact that he had a few pints down him as an acceptable excuse for doing this. (In case you haven't guessed, this happened to me.) Anyone see that episode of Master of None where the girl gets followed home? Well this creep at the bar was my version of that!
So back to the date, you decide to go on it, the first one in like six months and you think all the things you think before a first date. i.e. "God I hope he’s not a creep and he is the actually person in the pictures and doesn’t catfish me or murder me and bring me to the Wicklow mountains" you know, the normal things. You get to the bar or cafe and he’s late (they are always late), eventually he shows up and this is when your gut tells you yay or nay! But instead, you get something in-between, 'cause fuck it you're 34 and you’re tired. So anyway you call off your pre-arranged emergency phone call and think grand I’ll go through with the date. You get on well with the guy, he seems a nice enough chap, you talk for a few hours and it all goes really rather swimmingly.
It is at this point where I decide to give him my number and do the let's meet up again thing. We do meet again and we have sex this time and, well, this is where it all starts to fall apart. During the act he decides that it would be a good idea to...ah... choke me. Now I’m no prude, I’ll give anything a go at least once but the choking thing has never appealed to me. Ever. I squirm out of his hold and we continue, he flips me over, the charmer, and then decides to pull my hair. Not a gentle stroke that’s maybe a little too rough, oh no. He grabs a fistful and yanks it like a fucking horse's rein. Now it is at this point where I start to think “Hang on a second buddy, is this it? Is this your gameplay? Is this what you think a girl wants in bed?” And ladies, if that’s your thing then fine, I have absolutely no issue with it, IF it's your thing. And correct me if I’m wrong, but when it comes to that kind of kink in bed isn’t the polite thing to ask if it’s ok? Wait, scratch that, definitely ASK me if it’s ok!
Anyway, what’s sparked this rant about dating in Dublin and my frustrations, was a message I received last Friday from a dickhead I dated for half a second last October. We went on one date, it was fine, I mean he didn’t set my loins a-burning but he seemed grand, we met one more time and I slept with him but after that I decided I didn’t want to proceed with anything and told him so. He accepted graciously and we left it at “sure give me call sometime”, not thinking he would. However, on Friday morning this happened…
On what planet is ever ok to talk to another human being like that? To just dismiss them as a person and see them entirely as an object? To not make any effort whatsoever? To make me feel like all I am is a pair of tits, an arse and a vagina and to think that I would turn around and say "yeah sure, why the fuck not!" I’ll tell you why not, because I’m more than the sum of my parts. I have something to offer someone, more than a cheap shag. I have brains, a good job, amazing friends and I’m a fucking laugh. So no, dickheads of the world, I will not succumb to your bullshit proposals of “sexy fun time.” (What is he, twelve? What adult talks like that?) If you want me, find me. I’m done making the effort. I’ve been doing it for the last four years and I can’t be bothered with ye anymore.
|An artist's impression of Tess right now. via|