The Residual Stigma of Online Dating

I have never tried online dating.

It’s not that I necessarily have anything against online dating; I have just never done it. A friend of mine pointed out to me recently that I am the only person she knows our age that hasn’t tried it. According to her, the stigma is gone. I know a lot of people who have been successful with it, too, but for whatever reason when my complaints of the quality of men I’ve met is answered with a ‘what about online?’ suggestion, I have shot it down. My answer has always been that it just feels so forced, and I want something more organic.

Organic. That’s where my trouble lies. That would mean I would have to meet this person in my ‘everyday’ life. Well, my everyday life currently consists of work, yoga in my living room, and plans with friends on the weekend, including, of course, the occasional adventure to the bar. Now, my DVD yoga instructor isn’t exactly my type, and coworkers are a major dating Don’t; so that just leaves the bar.

Oh, the bar. First off, if I’m out with my friends and you can get me to pay attention to….no, try to hear anyone outside our little group, major points to you. Secondly, it’s a bar, and from my experience, the kind of guys that try to pick you up at a bar, should be left at the bar. Nothing good will come from giving your phone number to the ‘bro’ who smells like Jack Daniels, no matter how cute he is holding onto the actual bar for balance as his other hand tries to, ahem, sneakily slide from your waist to your bum. ::swoon::

Of course, there’s always the movie option. Your eyes meet on a crowded subway, he smiles, you smile, and next thing you know, you’re madly in love. I’ve met someone on a train before. It did not live up to the expectation. A cute guy entered the train, smiled, and sat next to me. Told me I had a beautiful eyes… or smile, possibly eyelashes, I forget, but before he left he gave me a card, and told me to contact him. A few days later, I decided, oh, what the hell, I’d give it a shot. We met that Saturday night, and I brought my friend along for a safety net, and thank God. About an hour into the night, he tells me he ‘hadn’t been completely honest’ with me, and needed a ride home a little earlier than he had originally said. Surprise! He was under house arrest and had a 10 o’clock curfew…. My friend and I drove him home, fearful for what would be the reaction if we said no, and thus all my romantic comedy driven notions were squashed.

So with no hope given to a future meet-cute, and bars eliminated, it seems my current day to day has set me up for set-ups, online, or future eccentric cat lady. Seeing how my cat hates every other cat, and no respectable eccentric cat lady only has one cat, it looks like maybe I should just get over the whole forced/organic prejudice, and give the whole online dating thing a whirl. After all, it’s gotta produce better conversation than my yoga instructor; that chick is a broken record.

You can read more from Christa Gonsalves on her blog and follow her on Twitter.

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