On 30something Dating Mistakes
There’s nothing quite like meandering around the Internet only to stumble across an article that really SPEAKS to you. You know what I’m talking about? Like, maybe you’re tired of looking at animated GIFs on Reddit, and you’ve exhausted your RSS reader’s daily assortment of news stories, and suddenly a couple errant clicks lead you to a revelation. That’s what just happened to me a few minutes ago. First I was catching up on my RSS subscriptions, then I clicked around a little bit, then I found this article called “9 Dating Mistakes You Make In Your 30s” because to think of one more to present a clean “top 10” list would have been overkill.
By the way, I’d just like to say, I woke up this morning and decided to go to the beach to get some sun and it turned out to be a miserable beach day here in Los Angeles. That almost NEVER happens. But after about 90 minutes of marine layer fog, a strong current and no eye candy, Will Rogers State Beach started to feel more like a hindrance than a pleasure. Not even a trip to a shockingly empty Bay Cities could rescue this lost cause. Boo.
So anyway, let’s talk about dating in your 30s. It’s WIERD, right? Suddenly everyone you date takes on a greater air of importance, like “this could be the one!” no? Yeah, I don’t really think that way either. But apparently that’s how people in my age bracket react to the opposite sex upon turning thirty. At least that’s what this article on Your Tango supposes. Once the odometer of your life rolls over from 29 to 30, shit apparently gets real. “The stakes get higher,” and “You’re tired of being the only friend without a Plus One to drag to all the parties.” Geez. What kind of thirty year olds is this author trying to relate to!? People in a high income bracket who are constantly being invited to galas and receptions with +1s? Sounds like someone else’s problem, not mine.
I’ve been thirty years old for exactly two months and one day. I think that means I’ve been in the club long enough to use my 30something dating experience and accrued knowledge to eloquently and succinctly respond to this article. After all, I’ve dated 5 different girls since then. Jesus, I’ve dated 5 different girls in two months? What the hell is wrong with me!? More importantly, what the hell is wrong with five women in this city that they’re interested in dating me!?
(Note: To be fair, two of ’em were one-and-dones, as in we had nothing in common and there was no spark and most assuredly no second date, the other three? Well, those stories vary greatly, but this is neither the place nor the time to open that can of worms)
Eh? What’s that you say? This article was written just for women? Well…shit. I guess I’m just going to have to pretend this article is speaking directly to me if I’m going to respond to it.
Here’s what I’m not supposed to be doing (read: me, the 30something women with an active dating life)
1. Repeatedly Dating a ‘Type’ – No, I most definitely don’t have a type. Isn’t that something that goes hand-in-hand with growing up? When I was 18 I dated a shy, mousy Jewish girl with more crippling neuroses and social-anxiety issues than even I could claim to possess. My sister lovingly (no, not really, I don’t think you can call someone ugly in a loving way) referred to her as a “Cleveland Browns Football Player — cute uniform, ugly helmet.” Okay, so she wasn’t the most attractive girl in the world. But she was caring, and compassionate, and she hated sex and was afraid of intimacy. Also I was really bad at communication (that hasn’t changed through the years!) and clearly I was way out of her league so after 18 months of committed monogamy plus another 18 months of random hookups that “relationship” came to a close. After that I fooled around with a bunch of girls I’d flirted with but kept at arms length because I was seeing someone, most of whom were more attractive, better socialized, more mature, and more sexual. That phase lasted for about three years. Then I found myself in another long-term relationship with an extroverted actress who was completely against-type from the previous girl I dated long-term. That lasted a shade over three years and then I got kicked to the curb, so I went through another phase of sport-fucking my way across town with a combination of girls I’d kept at arm’s length for the previous three years, random one-night stands and the occasional two or three-month fling. The girl I’ve met recently who most intrigues me is nothing like either of those two girls, so I guess I don’t have a type and this doesn’t apply to me. Of course, if I wanted to answer this question honestly I would have started by saying I tend to date cold, emotionally-distant girls who are really bad at either openly expressing what’s in their minds/hearts and terrible at demonstrating their love and affection, which drives me into a fury of stress and heartache and anxiety. And just because almost every girl I’ve ever dated seriously fits into that pattern of behavior does NOT mean I have a “type” that I am repeatedly dating.
Fuck you. Moving on.
2. Waiting for everything to “fall into place.” – Why do these articles always use a lot of scare quotes? Who are you quoting, author? Who gave you that term, “fall into place?” that you’re citing? I don’t get it. Also, I don’t wait for things to fall into place. I’m too impulsive. I work too hard at it. I’m into the chase. I can’t just sit around and wait for a girl to fall into my lap. I have to be out hustling, trying to earn that connection. It’s not going to fabricate itself out of thin air. It’s not going to materialize before my eyes while I’m sitting in my sweltering bedroom blogging every night. I’ve got to be the one to initiate and keep in touch and work and build toward something. Yeah, waiting for things to fall into place is nothing more than being lazy or fearful of failure. That’s not me.
3. Being overly direct – The only time I’m ever direct with a girl I’m dating (and, just so you know, this article defines direct as “[asking] for exactly what you want”) is during the delicate act of lovemaking, when I wag my finger in her face and demand an answer to the question, “Where do you want me to finish, on your butt, your tits or your face. You must choose one. You have three seconds to answer or I’ll choose for you.” That’s not so bad, right? I wouldn’t call that “overly direct.”
4. Holding out for perfection – Ha. Yeah right. Even a couple who meets and marries and spends 75 years together isn’t likely to admit that they’ve achieved perfection. Do you know why? Because to attain perfection is to admit you’re done working towards an achievement. In the context of a relationship then “perfection” implies there is no emotional or psychological growth left, no more stages of evolution to enter, no changes to adapt to, no acts of kindness or love that have an affect on your partner. Personally I think the idea of a perfect relationship is really depressing. Who wants to be in a relationship that reaches a certain point and then (for all intents and purposes) ceases to exist because, well, what else is there for us to do? Luckily for me I also think perfection in a relationship is impossible to attain, so I don’t really give it much thought.
5. Letting self-pity win – Huh? Is it even possible for people to date if they’re constantly feeling sorry for themselves? Wouldn’t they spend so much time eating donuts and crying there wouldn’t be any opportunities to even meet someone else? I don’t get this “mistake.”
6. Thinking money is the key to love – Okay, fair point, I make this mistake sometimes. But then again I live in LA and maybe it’s just me but at least 90% of the girls I meet are very quick to ask about jobs and careers here. I went on a double-date with my friend Dan where a one of the girls asked us what kind of cars we drove before our drinks had even arrived. And if you think the attention of the opposite sex isn’t drawn to you if you’re out at a bar with a recognizable successful friend, you’re sorely mistaken. Hell, the ONE time I got recognized at a bar because of this website…I thought I could literally take the entire bar home and fuck the ever-loving shit out of it. And I make NO money. But I digress. Money definitely isn’t the key to love. I know that. I’ve had a female friend tell me that she went on multiple dates to fast food restaurants because her guy couldn’t afford to take her to even a modest restaurant or bar. And she’s okay with it, because he’s on his own path working towards his goals. Money isn’t the key to love…but sometimes it can help get your foot in the door with a certain class of women. Low class, but a class nonetheless.
7. Thinking every partner is the one – This is going on too long. I really don’t care to write this much about all these stupid mistakes one woman is telling a bunch of other women to stop making. I’M NOT EVEN A WOMAN. WHY AM I WRITING ABOUT THIS?
Forget it. I don’t even care about the last two tenets. Seriously. I don’t care. I just want to go get some In-N-Out and drive my bro to the airport and listen to Coast-to-Cast AM alone in my car. Yeah, that sounds like someone who’s psychologically fit and ready for a relationship.
Ladies…line forms to the left.
No, your other left. (Ugh. LA.)
Bernard Herrmann – Theme From Taxi Driver [MP3]
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