After being single for many years since my divorce, I believe the years of dating, along with several long-term relationships in between, have all provided me with some fond memories, some heartaches, a wealth of knowledge and some regrets but very few. As you get older, the dynamics change completely in the dating arena. Who would ever believe that grown adults still play games, especially at my age, and the competition is fierce. A lot of men in their 50’s and 60’s are still looking for their Twinkie and some desperate women make the dating scene more difficult and challenging than it needs to be. There have been many clowns who have crossed my path, some moved on rather quickly and others stayed longer than necessary. Today, my famous words are, “I am done with the clowns and the circus is closed.” I sometimes think I am just not good at this dating thing nor do I have the patience for the nonsense or the time for playing games. Not at this time of my life and now I open myself up to a new world, fully exposed but still filled with hope and yes, I am a distant dreamer.
Not being a bar stool girl, I turned to online dating for a period of time. Oh, yes, I did. Every online dating site provides you with the hope and the fairy tale story of a lasting relationship that could potentially turn into a longer lasting relationship to possibly marriage. Some promise more dates, more relationships and more marriages than any other dating site. Others proclaim they deliver more than just dates that their patented compatibility matching system narrows the field from thousands of single men or women, to match you with a highly select group of compatible singles and they claim it to be a scientific predictor for long-term relationship success. Really? I will not argue the fact that many have found love in cyberspace but for me, it has been a ride, an adventure and a novel in the making. I consider myself to be a fairly stable, intelligent woman with style and grace and yet, sometimes still a little naïve and stupid because I believe in love, after love.
Before I considered online dating, there was a lot of fear that came with taking it into consideration. I thought about my past experiences with men and the variation of characters. What could be left for me to meet? With my luck, potentially a mass murderer! But I jumped into the pool, treading water lightly, with little to no expectations (well, I thought I had none) and a lot of careful thinking, along with a little creativity and wit that went into writing my profile. However, every word of it was honest, as were the pictures and it gave an accurate description as to what kind of man and relationship I was looking for. Really, how much more unromantic could it possibly get? But I took the plunge.
I have joked many times with friends about having 12,000 hits to my profile and less than a handful of potential suitors have gotten past a wink. The stories are endless. Some are extremely hilarious. Others are out right unbelievable and bizarre. Stuff you just cannot make up. The experience left me with a lot of questions, somewhat discouraged and disheartened. Are there any gentleman left in this world? Why is everyone on the hunt? Where in my profile did it say I was easy and desperate? I have come to the conclusion, most men and women included, just look at the pictures and the art of reading is a thing of the past because clearly if a man had read my entire profile, he would have completely understood what I was looking for. Unless he was a complete illiterate.
Maybe I trust and believe in honest, kind and loving qualities in people. Maybe I believe in integrity. Maybe I believe in romance. Maybe I believe in true love. Maybe I believe you truly can find your soul mate. Maybe I expect too much but I settled too many times in my lifetime and the settling days are over. I am no Twinkie, and if you are looking for one, you are searching in the wrong kitchen cabinet.
I am fairly attractive. I hold my own but at this stage of my life, it is utterly amazing to me how many men in my age range are looking for the much younger woman. I get the reason; I am not completely stupid. Maybe it is a mid-life crisis, or they want that eye candy on their arm. Maybe it is an ego thing that they still have the it factor but fella’s after you move out of the bedroom and the effects of the blue pill have worn off, what do you really have in common with the Twinkie? Outside of sex and what size your wallet is, what can you possibly be talking about? Is it anywhere near an intelligent conversation? Do not get me wrong, I believe true love can happen regardless of an age difference. I have witnessed it happen with many people who are close to me, but it is a rarity and when it does happen, it is a special bond, love and complete connection.
If you are committed to bachelorhood or being a bachelorette, then marriage or a true long-lasting relationship are not for you. When things and life are centered on you and only you, you are incapable of being a unit of two. Honestly, that is okay if it works for you but say that in your profile. Be clear and upfront. Set the ground rules and the expectations from the start, then no one can say you were not honest or that you misrepresented your intentions.
I believe most woman want to see a man put in some effort, and well-written, along with good grammar are important when you e-mail. Make it clear that you read and thought about her profile. If you do not show her, she is worth your time, she most certainly will not think you are worth hers. And once you move into meeting each other, pick up the phone…what is with all of the texting? Have people forgotten the art of conversation? My take on all the texting, anyone who uses texting as the only means of communication, leads me to believe that they have something to hide or its pure laziness or they may have social skill issues. For me, I want to hear your voice. Wow, what a concept…connecting vocally and ladies, this works in reverse too.
I remember a time when one profile stood out. It was written with such refreshing honesty and the context was an extremely bold move on his part. It also helped that he most certainly had the it factor, along with intelligence, a great sense of humor, athletic build, retired twice over and a good grasp on the reality of life. While his profile made for some good reading, most would probably have thought he was a bizarre and insane man, but he was honest, clear and concise as to what type of relationship he was looking for. While I found his story to be amusing and intriguing, it most certainly was not anything I was looking for and while I did not completely understand his wants and desires, I respectfully, declined his intentions and moved on.
Have we become that shallow of a world that it is all about looks, shape, size and how many digits are in your net worth or what type of car you drive or how big your house is? Also, when did relationships become more like a business deal? I admit to overlooking one or two or many of those 12,000 viewers purely based on looks but for me you most certainly needed to have teeth. You should not be wearing overall’s or be topless on the beach or a boat with your unattractive gut hanging out for the world to see, holding a drink, and surrounded by bathing beauties. You get my point!
Now if you add distance to the mix, I have yet to meet someone where distance is not an issue. I do believe if you are not willing to put the work into getting to know each other or into finding a true, loving, equal and caring relationship than you should not be on a dating site, unless you are extremely clear that you are looking for a non-committed relationship and good luck with that. I am not saying my thought process is the right process, however, I do believe dating and expectations are a personal choice and you should follow your heart, your gut and not sell yourself short.
I left the online dating world believing it to be the new bar scene. My intention is not to generalize the whole process and I am just speaking from my own perspective and experience. I met some jerks and some genuinely nice men. It takes a date or two or more to figure out if you are both on the same life path. Some will fill a temporary need, some will be great company, some will move on and some will become great friends. And maybe someone will become a lifetime.
Lastly, there is that chance you will meet someone, and everything just hums. And wham, in the end, timing is everything and you both are on different life paths. The hard ones to let go of and get past are the ones that say, “only if we had met years ago.” We are all human. We all have feelings, wants and needs but the day that serious conversation happens, sometimes they include specific words that never leave your mind, like, “people come into your life for a reason, a season or a lifetime.”
Sometimes that person can be in your life for more than a season and for more than a reason but will never be for a lifetime and yet, my heart remains receptive, my mind is open, and I still believe…my lifetime will come.
Reason, Season, or a Lifetime
People come into your life for a reason, a season or a lifetime.
When you figure out which one it is, you will know what to do for each person.
When someone is in your life for a REASON, it is usually to meet a need you have expressed. They have come to assist you through a difficulty; to provide you with guidance and support; to aid you physically, emotionally or spiritually. They may seem like a godsend, and they are. They are there for the reason you need them to be.
Then, without any wrongdoing on your part or at an inconvenient time, this person will say or do something to bring the relationship to an end. Sometimes they die. Sometimes they walk away. Sometimes they act up and force you to take a stand. What we must realize is that our need has been met, our desire fulfilled; their work is done. The prayer you sent up has been answered, and now it is time to move on.
Some people come into your life for a SEASON, because your turn has come to share, grow or learn. They bring you an experience of peace or make you laugh. They may teach you something you have never done. They usually give you an unbelievable amount of joy. Believe it. It is real. But only for a season.
LIFETIME relationships teach you lifetime lessons; things you must build upon in order to have a solid emotional foundation. Your job is to accept the lesson, love the person, and put what you have learned to use in all other relationships, and areas of your life. It is said that love is blind but friendship is clairvoyant. ~ Unknown