From Our Readers
April 13, 2016 1:35 pm

I am fortunate enough to live in New Zealand, where same sex marriage has been legal since 2013. So no, I’m not worried that I won’t be able to marry the woman of my dreams one day. I worry about the ability to actually find “the one.”

Even for straight people, the dating pool can feel pretty small. Gone are the days where meet-cutes were the start of something wonderful, where you met the love of your life by chance in line at a coffee shop. Nope, these days, everyone is all about Tinder. So if you’re after something more than a Tinder fling, it’s pretty slim pickings. In the recent film How To Be Single. Lucy (played by Alison Brie) explains to her bartender, Tom (Anders Holm) exactly how small the dating pool feels for her. Of the men in her age range, at least half were married, and of the remaining single ones, half would be gay, of the remaining single, straight men, half weren’t college educated, and so on. Lucy explains that there are VERY FEW men left for her, and that’s if she even is lucky enough to meet them before her eggs dry up.

Now, take this quandary, and look at it from my perspective: a recently out, baby lesbian in a reasonably small city. I try not to think about it in terms of numbers too often, or I’ll end up singing “All By Myself” in my pajamas every night for the rest of my life, until the day when I’ve accumulated so many cats that their meows create an orchestral backing track for my loneliness.

I’ve been on Tinder for a while now, despite my disdain for it. In the lesbian world, it’s actually all about who you know. If you’ve ever seen The Real L-Word, you’ll know that most lesbians in a city know each other through a few degrees of separation. You dated this girl, who dated your friend, who dated that girl, who you dated. So, if we follow the logic that there’s some secret lesbian club in every city where we’re all linked, if you don’t know many other lesbians, you’re screwed. Or not, as the case may be. I know one other lesbian. Things aren’t looking good for my love life.

I know it can happen to gay people too, but it seems like it’s mostly heterosexual people who just get lucky and randomly meet the love of their life. No Tinder or bar-hopping required, just a good old fashioned meet-cute. Locking eyes with a stranger at a party. You know, all those stories romantic comedies are built on. With lesbians, it’s harder. Sure, I’ll see a pretty girl at the supermarket or in a café or at a party. But the chances that she too is gay and single are slim. Even if she is, it’s harder to somehow subtly convey that to a stranger. I don’t look like a stereotypical lesbian – whatever that is – which makes it even more difficult. For all I know, cute lesbians have been eyeing me up all around town (I wish) but think I’m straight.

I’ve talked to a dozen girls. Been ghosted by one who I talked with for 3 weeks. Been on one (really good, might I add), date, after which she stopped all communication. Basically, I’m starting to feel like Person X or the Wicked Witch of the West — misunderstood and lonely. The point is, I’m not feeling all that confident about finding anyone to spend some time with, let alone someone to spend my life with.

What’s the solution here? Make friends with more of these elusive lesbians? Go to my city’s ONE gay bar (which tends to be dominated by gay men) every single weekend in the hopes of finding true love in the middle of a Lady GaGa/Spice Girls mashup? Or just be content with my pets and stay optimistic?

I guess what I’m saying is that it’s hard for everyone to feel like they’re going to find “the one.” Whether you’re straight or gay or something else, feeling optimistic about love, and about finding someone to spend your life with, can be tricky. It’s a hard world out there, especially if you’re not into the online dating thing. All it takes is being ghosted once for you to feel like you’re destined to be alone. But on the other side, all it takes is seeing happy couples, straight or gay, to know that it might still be okay in the end.

Tallulah Cardno is a Hufflepuff-Slytherin hybrid and a writer from New Zealand. When she’s not writing, she’s watching Disney movies with her bearded dragon, quoting Gilmore-isms because it’s a second language to her, or having a blast working with the kids and teens she works with. She is passionate about reading, unicorns, YouTube, feminism, animals, education, human rights, dark chocolate, birthdays, and Harry Potter. You can find her at her blog or on Twitter.