After reading the title, I bet you are thinking one of two things: “This woman is a bitter rage-bag who needs some major help” or “Sigh, I know right?!”
Maybe you are the type of person who enjoys dating. You like the thrill of the chase and you own a black American Express card (for those of you who don’t know what that is, it means you have a massive line of credit and you are probably filthy fucking rich).
But, for those humble souls who don’t have endless credit, for those who are war torn from the interview process and for those daring individuals who look forward to a monogamous committed relationship as if it was like crossing into Eden—dating sucks.
If this describes you, I have bad news. Now therapists are saying that married couples need to set up date nights. You can’t escape it. But, unlike death and taxes, it requires more work.
Hold on to your knickers because I am about to outline the ten reasons dating is like a weekend in Vegas with just you and your savings account. (I’m sorry baby, the house always wins.)
1. Profiling like a TSA agent: After you have been in the game for a while, you stop dating and you start profiling. It’s like being a drug sniffing dog on the Mexican border. Dating sites started it. I mean, the FBI started it. Then Facebook followed suit. Then everyone got in the profiling game.
2. Dating Sites: Fuck, I have to fill out a five page questionnaire just to figure out if I am going to get laid or not. Back in the day, the most complicated choice I had to make was what type of underwear to wear, and whether I should shave my legs or not.
3. High Hopes & Low Standards: When your lead question to self is, Is this person I’m about to meet up with psycho?, it’s a dead give-away you are: A. Thirty-something, B. Divorced or C. Both. If you know more about the person than the cops do before you ever meet them, and if they are asking the question, Is my date psycho?, the answer might be yes. I would also like to say, this tendency towards psycho is not all your fault. I blame it on whoever endorsed Dr. Phil as an expert on relationships and then gave him his own T.V show. You know who you are.
4. Health Security Protocol: I swear to you they are going to start installing those x-ray airport-security-machines at Olive Gardens, Apple Bees, and truck stops. Fuck it, let’s just throw a colonoscopy in the mix for good measure. In fact, I will just bring my entire sexual health history to our first date. It hasn’t gotten to this point, but I imagine that during some insanely horny moment, this conversation might take place: “Do you have an STD and is it curable?” “Yes.” “Well, in that case, there will be a service charge. I will just send you the clinic bill.” (Yes, it’s a whole new level of desperate. I’d die alone in my cabin in the woods, surrounded by my twelve cats and have them eat my rotting carcass before I ever crossed over into code-WTF-desperate.) Now that we cleared that up—pun intended—let’s move on.
5. Biological Clock: From age 28 to now, mine has sounded like Big Ben. But, I don’t want babies. I just want to practice making them all the time. I want to drown myself in sex. If there are fifty shades of grey and five colors of fucking, I want to taste the rainbow.
6. Children: I have mad respect for parents; especially single parents. And dating while raising kids is like playing the worst game of Go Fish ever. The whole time you are thinking, “Does my date have the cards I need to make a set or don’t they?” If both consensual parties already have kids then it becomes the craziest game of Gin-Fucking-Rummy ever known to mankind. You win Gin-Rummy when you get two sets of three and four of a kind. In relationship terms, it is a blend of kids, parents, extended family and partners. The only other place that has more combinations is Baskin Robin’s 31 Flavors of Ice Cream.
7. The Economy: Who pays for shit? Do I? Does he? Do we both chip in? A date used to mean a free meal. Well, it was sort of free if you don’t think of a hand job as work.
8. Epic Fail. Date number one consists of dinner, entertainment, and maybe some cocktails; maybe even several cocktails because you were so nervous you forgot your own name. That fifth Cape Cod you drank was just to take the edge off. Now, you not only have the pleasure of nursing a hangover with massive amounts of Gatorade, you also get to use it to wash down your Plan B pill. (Plan A—manifest your fairytale life like a genie—clearly hasn’t worked out.)
9. Aging. Have you seen some subtle changes in your body? Maybe some white hairs have started to show up and have made you quietly wonder, “Am I turning into a wizard?” Maybe your skin has started to grow moles at a rate that has you asking, “Am I part witch?” When hair removal becomes a part-time job and you are starting to consider adding lasers into the mix, Ponce de Leon doesn’t look so stupid does he? (Further, as a woman I have to say our breasts start to do really weird things. If mine received a report card every month, one would get a B- and the other a C+. When this happens, the lyrics to the Janis Joplin song, Get it while you can take on a whole new meaning.)
10. The 50/50 statistic: Hey, the date could be one of the best nights of your life. In fact, it could even lead to a meaningful relationship, children, a mortgage and deep spiritual growth. But, if you take this thing all the way to the altar, you only have a fifty percent chance of sticking it out. In different terms, you are walking into the hospital with a terminal illness and they are fifty percent sure a cure will be invented in time to save your life. Hey, fuck it right? Put on your best hoe gear and slap on your best pretty. Go get’em tiger!
After reading this you may have wet your pants from laughing or you might be puking from utter disgust. Either way, I say go get your Journey album and crank it up. Don’t stop believing!
Authors Note: Okay, okay, after the last article and this one, I can see how I am painting a bleak picture. I became a therapist because I get it. Life is full of challenges. As a therapist, I help individuals rise to the challenge time after time. Some of my clients have been my greatest teachers. I am honored to be a witness to the power of the human spirit. Thanks for reading!
Editor: Lori Lothian
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