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Datingisthenewawkward

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Like, wouldn’t you feel compelled to respond to this titillating message? I thought about how and why I was such a failure in the dating department. Other people were also confused about my spinster virgin status, but for the wrong reason. There was just something in me that refused to compromise, that refused to flatten myself to appear more palatable to the fleeting desires of men, that curled up into a little ball whenever a guy came too close, that pulled flaws out of every single quirk and mannerism and sentiment expressed by a guy and immediately categorized them (and in turn, him) as unworthy and unforgivable, that hated uncertainty even though it was all I knew–especially when it came to romantic and sexual interest, that would prefer solitude over company if company meant having to spend time with a stranger through a contrived set of circumstances.To them, being cute dictated I shouldn’t be single or a virgin. I was impatient and unlikable and an unapologetic misandrist by default, and that was not going to change.

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A predominantly white space signaled to me that there was a reason people of color stayed away. Tayo and I greeted each other with a hug and got a couple of beers.Nobody asks Becky or John where their names are from. Mackenzie, this is…uh, sorry what’s your name again?It’s lightweight racist and a microaggressive form of Othering, k.) We had barely chatted and already I was annoyed with him. He suggested we watch the show together sometime soon. Well, never mind, I’m never going to see you again anyway.He didn’t exist, except in the confines of my erratic imagination.I realized I didn’t know how to live life in conjunction with someone else anyway.She changed her mind, but I stayed on the app, sucked in by all the new prospective dates within reach of my fingertips. Things are still going to be awkward and confusing and disappointing.

Dating in real life isn’t going to be any better, I told myself. Might as well make use of an app that helps me get through them faster until I find Mr. One day, a guy I will call Tayo popped up on my feed. It was a high res, close up picture of him holding a turtle. He was a person of color, he should know better than to ask.

I had determined that I was pretty much a lost cause. I ended up on Tinder again in September of that year.

I was coerced into creating a new account by my friend Chelsia, who was interested in trying Tinder Social, a new feature that enabled users to go on group dates (and was probably created to increase people’s chances of participating in a threesome or orgy).

I had turned twenty-five at the end of last August.

I threw myself an awesome birthday party that involved a Trump piñata, a jump house, and Pokémon balloons–an elaborate, immature attempt to repress my anxieties and dread of getting older but not any wiser, richer, or happier.

I started worrying about being alone in the long term.