I don't know how to start this post.
I've typed out a starting line a couple of times here and then backspace backspace backspace deleted it all because it didn't feel right.
I want to talk about something to do with online dating, but I feel like I'm admitting something I'm not very proud of.
See, I've been involved with this online dating site for a couple of years now.
For the first year I was nervous about the whole thing and so I just kind of lurked.
I lurked and I looked and I freaked out when someone sent me a message and I felt really uncomfortable about the whole thing.
Then I decided to at least try to work through my fears and spent a few months getting used to actually using the site.
I wanted to be kind with people and so if someone I didn't find attractive or who didn't seem like someone who gibed with me messaged me, I'd send them a short message back. Something saying "Thanks for saying hi, I'm not interested, but good luck." (More carefully worded, but that was the general idea.)
Most times I got a thank you back, but occasionally the guy would then try to strike up a conversation and I'd be in the awkward position of having to then ignore him, which always made me feel bad.
I found, during this time, that I would get really upset and hurt when a guy wouldn't message me back. How hard is it so say "thanks but no thanks"? I thought. Can't he even respond politely to my message?
After a while, I realized that this was kind of just how it worked.
If someone wasn't interested in me, they just weren't going to respond to my message.
Was I hurt by that? Of course.
But only for a while.
(And here's where I start feeling guilty.)
So I started to do the same thing.
Now, when I get a message from a guy I'm not interested in, for whatever reason, I just don't respond to his message.
Sometimes it's because I don't find him attractive in his photo (I feel the worst about that judgment) or because I feel he's a good bit older than I'd like to date (I feel pretty bad about this one too actually) or because something he's said in his message or profile hasn't sat with me the right way (this is what's weird about online dating, you're reacting to very very different things than you would in person and I'm not sure it's a good thing.)
So I guess lately I've been ignoring the fact that I do get attention from the site.
I get messages fairly regularly, it's just rarely from someone I'm attracted to and interested in.
I think Chad was something of a rarity (at least in this town....I don't know about other, bigger towns, but I wonder.) And I still am not sure the online gig is the way for me to meet a guy, but I figured I should be honest about the fact that I do the very thing that sometimes bums me out.
That's not to say I don't still get ignored by guys I'm interested in, I do and it's still a bummer, but it's also a guilt-maker knowing I might be bumming someone else out in just the same way.
And now I'm not even sure I'm making sense anymore so I'm just going to stop typing and be done with this post because the whole thing made me uncomfortable the end.