I’m only 20 years old and I’m already sick of the whole dating process. So this is a break down of exactly why I’m going to be living in a house full of animals in the future rather than with a significant other.
1. The Initial Spark
Chemistry. That ever allusive initial reaction you get where different things connect and you realise you’re attracted to the person you’re talking to. It’s pretty damn important. It is also, pretty damn rare. There are many people in my life I share interesting conversations with and common interests with room for gripping debates but it is only once in a while that I feel that attack of butterflies towards someone.
If then, it is so rare and awesome when you meet someone you have that connection with, why do we insist on making it even harder on ourselves by adding rules and protocol?
You’ve got to the stage where you have one another’s numbers. Congrats. Now the really confusing shit starts. Are you replying too quickly? Are there ulterior motives to how long it is taking them to reply? What if the conversation goes dead? Can you start it off again even if you sent the last text? What if they don’t text back? How long before you have to assume they’re giving you the brush off? Or do you give them the benefit of the doubt – their phone may have broken, their battery may be dead, they may have just forgotten to reply… Plus, you don’t want to seem too keen. The list of available neuroses goes on.
3. Just be yourself.
This is bollocks. How can you be yourself? The minute the butterflies take over your normal calm collected self goes straight out of the window to be taken over by the residue of every bad dating experience you’ve ever had. Every syllable uttered becomes an internal struggle between the forces of sane and batshit. While I am always reminding my friends in the same situation to remember that they also have the power to turn someone down, or that they’re awesome and they should focus on that, it becomes next to impossible. Mostly because the minute the crazy sets in you forget that you are in fact normally together, clever, funny, awesome and it’s all you can do not to let the crazy in your head overflow to your eyes because by the time you’re there, there’s no saving the situation.
The perk and peril of dating. At what point is it acceptable to kiss/sleep with the person you’ve been seeing? The whole time you dance along the fine line of suspicion that once they get sex they’re out of there while simultaneously preventing yourself from sleeping with a person you may like. This is admittedly a paranoia taught to all little girls thanks to society and media that all guys are “just after one thing” but some of them really actually are. So I guess this comes back to trust.
It is hard earned and quickly lost. The more times you get scorned, the less likely you are to trust again. Basic cause and effect logic. Which means that several bad experiences later, all the crazy previously mentioned just becomes constant paranoia that you’re being played for a fool. There’s not much to fix this except from just jumping in and risking it again (beating back the crazy the whole time) but once burned twice shy once multiplied by several bad experiences makes a hermit.
I will admit that I clearly have issues. I am in no doubt about that. But I didn’t always, a few too many bad experiences has made me very cautious. And paranoid. On the rare occasion that I do meet a guy I like, I struggle to let the past be the past and to not carry those issues with me. At the same time, I hate feeling powerless. Generally speaking, if a guy is interested, he’ll make it known and I have never met a guy who’s fallen for a girl who chased him. Which means, that, as a girl, I’m left waiting on the guy so as not to spook him which goes against all my feminist.
Seriously, I want 5 guinea pigs and a pug.