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In case you had any doubt that dating is dead, we held a funeral for it – and buried forever the harmful and irrelevant notions about romance, women and relationships that have plagued us for so long. RIP!
As Victoria from The Village Voice writes, we “have no problem bidding goodbye to bullshit rules of courtship.” Nope. Not at all.
(VILLAGE VOICE: dah GIRLS Jessica Donalds & REBECCA WIEGAND HOLD FUNERAL FOR DATING)
Every lady knows and loves and yearns for this guy. The One Who Got Away.
By definition, he’s not in my dah, but he’s been in my life for practically all of my 27 years.
We met – as it were – as toddlers in the mountains, where our families vacationed at the same rustic resort. There’s a photograph of five-year-old, platinum blond, chubby-faced me staring at him across a wildflower field. He had long, curly, silken dark hair and in the picture, he’s wearing a red t-shirt and looking back at me cooly, like a miniature rebel without a cause.
If you go up to the resort even now, there’s a piece of driftwood where we both wrote our names in magic marker, probably that same year. He’s a year older than I am, so his name is spelled correctly and mine has a backwards B and Y.
It wasn’t until much later that I consciously knew I was in love with him. I was 12-years-old, with knobby knees and ears that stuck out, but I was still a sun-kissed, freckled blonde and had happily evaded the awkward ‘awkward phase’ that had stricken most of my friends during this time. At home in the suburbs, I was making out against lockers and in his bunk-bed with Rob The Hockey Player, though refusing every day to ‘be his girlfriend.’ I had that compulsive desire for male attention (even adolescent, slightly be-pimpled male attention), but I knew I was saving up my “official” love life for someone truly epic.
That’s when I re-encountered him, The One Who Got Away, on vacation with my family in the mountains.
Breakups are tough across the board, but it’s a different beast for the one who gets dumped. While the dumper tiptoed off the rug, methodically rolled it up and placed it in the hall closet, the dumpee simply had it tugged out from underneath them.
They’re hurled into a whirlwind of anger and shame and disbelief. They feel betrayed, yet still in love, which in turn makes them feel crazy. Their self-worth plummets, then rises on a good hair day, then plummets again when they see a sandwich that vaguely resembles the dumper’s face.
It’s very touch and go, and I feel for the dumpee. But I’m not talking to the dumpees; I’m talking to the dumpers. And dumpers, I’m here to tell you this:
Ten years ago, I was a senior in college just about to graduate. To celebrate, I went out with some of my best friends and my friend Jake, who had brought along his friend Mark.
We all spent the night dancing like crazy to hits of the 80ʼs, drinking and having a great time. Mark and I started dancing with each other and, as the night went on, he kissed me on the dance floor.
I was finally one half of a couple at middle school dances that makes out like crazy on the dance floor in front of everyone not giving a fuck – except please remember I was a senior in college, like of legal drinking age.
I had never met Mark before, but I knew that he and Jake had been friends for a long time. If he had Jake’s approval, then I knew he was a good guy. Also, he super cute, so, yes please.
Ok, so I did know one thing about Mark; I knew he had recently broken up with someone. That was fine with me, as I was leaving town soon anyway. I was going to use Mark. Not in a mean way. It’s just, come on, this was the perfect opportunity for me to get some real dates under my belt before I headed into the real world.
As the night wound down, Jake drove us home as Mark sat next to me in the back seat holding my hand.
Ever since that moment in “My So Called Life,” when Jordan takes Angela by the hand in the hallway, in front of all of his friends, declaring their relationship; holding someone’s hand is all I’ve ever wanted.
As we got to the bottom of my street, I told Jake that it was OK for him to drop me off there. I kissed Mark on the cheek, got out of the car, and began to walk up the steep hill to my apartment. It was almost 4:00am, the moon was setting, and the sun was just starting to rise. The street and sidewalks were wet from the rain earlier in the night. The streetlights, still on, were making things very romantic.
It was like a fucking movie, yʼall.
I’ve decided to get a little Emily Post up in here considering there is no current Emily Post and she made it all up anyway. My first order of gauntlet throwing: the social media + break-up connection: what do you with all those photos after the relationship is no more?
I think we need to handle this on a case-by-case basis, which I’ve outlined below. Obviously the real answer is do as you please, but if you can’t figure out what you please, here are some thoughts.
Ever get tired of swiping left or right through a sea of people in your city who have been narrowed down only by an age range? Let’s get more specific shall we?
As always, the Internet has come to our rescue. Here are some incredibly specific dating sites to meet all your individual needs.
Unclear whether you can sign up to find someone else who has horse posters all over their room, or if you can match with an actual horse.
Even if we all texted exactly what we meant…it probably wouldn’t get us very far anyway. JUST PICK UP THE PHONE!
Oh boy, oh boy. You think you’ve seen it all with wedding invites until you’ve seen this one:
Thankfully, this did not go out to the entire guest list, but rather two people in particular…the bride’s parents.
According to the Daily Mail, Aussie based Alyssa Pearce, 23, posted the un-invitation on Reddit before her wedding to husband Alex, 28, last year. Obviously, this went viral. How could it not? In the original post Alyssa offered some context that a family dispute, due to a contentious relationship with her father, had driven her to run away from home at the age of 16.
Like many women of the Internet, I read this week’s feminist pot stirrer on The Cut called, The Real Reason Women Freeze Their Eggs. I enjoyed it, and thought it raised some interesting fodder for a conversation that needs to happen.
“I suspected that, for many, careers were a socially acceptable excuse; if you froze your eggs because you simply hadn’t found a partner to have kids with, well, that was embarrassing.
But that was the truth of the matter. I continued to date, sipping listlessly at glasses of wine in bars chosen because I didn’t frequent them. Many of my closest female friends were doing the same. That they were excellent company to be in — smart, compelling, beautiful — did not change the fact that our collective situation was a drag. The people and situations were different but the broad outlines were all too often the same: The dude was cagey. He acted erratically, pursuing and then retreating. He was evasive when confronted with our wants and needs, or agitated, or defensive. Sometimes he simply disappeared. Of course, not all of the men we met and dated were commitment-phobes. But the numbers were significant enough to present a serious problem for those of us who wanted a partnership and children.”
For a while, we were all screaming at single girls that the only reason they were still single is that they were choosing the wrong men. Look inward, we said. Are you choosing the right guys? Are you only looking for unavailable men? It’s probably something YOU are doing to yourself.
What girl in her right mind looks for an unavailable man? It just happens. The real problem is, it happens way too often. How can we tell women that the solution to their problem is to just not choose unavailable men, when it seems like that’s their only choice.
Its not us. It’s them. They’re ALL emotionally unavailable/scared of settling down/stunted/selfish/fucking around.
Hey, what’s better than a real human boyfriend? A fake digital boyfriend, obviously! Elite Daily announced to the world last week that, “A set of apps called Invisible Boyfriend and Invisible Girlfriend, now in beta, offer you the chance to create a significant other who will send texts and appear in photos with you.”
Um, wut? I get lonely sometimes (as all of us sad, sad, chronically single people do), but I don’t think having a robot text me sweet nothings at night would fix that. In fact, I think it would exacerbate my sadness, because it would be taunting me with what I don’t have.
The article points out the myriad uses for the app, which mostly concern tricking people. “The new partner also comes with a unique meet-cute story and shared photographs for your nosy aunt to see,” and “He or she will send real-time messages checking in on you, meaning your coworkers can watch a message exchange happen.”
But really, is it worth this whole kit and caboodle to lie to people who are just concerned about your wellbeing? Maybe I have a super-rad, mega-awesome family, but besides the occasional standard, “Is there anyone special?” I don’t get pestered about my personal life very much. Very, very, very occasionally, they’ll pry a teeny bit further, but who needs an invisible boyfriend app when we still have access to the good, ole-fashioned excuse? “Sorry family, I have a full-time job, a part time job, and a time-consuming hobby. No time for sweet, sweet lovin’.”
“Amanda Bradford doesn’t think her dating app, The League, is elitist. She prefers the word “curated,” the same way Ivy League schools and top employers select only the best candidates,” explains Business Insider.
Umm… girl, let’s not use euphemisms. It’s elitist. This is some straight up sorority girl booshit that just got $2.1 million in funding. It’s for a good cause though guys, “Ultimately, Bradford wants to match tons of power couples.” And, isn’t that what the free world needs, more power couples? I just wish Bradford had a modicum of self-awareness and understood that this truly is elitist. Just come out, say it, and embrace it. I’d respect it way more. Like, cool, I don’t agree but you do you girl.
If you’re wondering who the 4,500 beta users are, “Right now, the app skews slightly female, and its users often have advanced degrees. They tend to be in their late 20s; all have been carefully selected by Bradford’s team using an are-you-cool-enough algorithm her tech team built.”
Look, I was in a sorority for four whole years. I participated in grueling weeks of rush school for three of those years, which makes it pretty easy for me to sniff out some pretty obvious similarities between what I went through and what Bradford’s team apparently gets paid to do. #justsaying
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