A problem shared (internet dating horror stories)
“A problem shared is a problem halved” goes the old English saying. I heartily agree with that one. This is not just because I’m a psychotherapist and I know that just talking to someone about your problems can be enough to help you feel better; but because I’ve had my own personal experience of this recently.
I have entered the world of internet dating. (Shudder). I was finding it overwhelming, demoralizing and down right depressing. However, I found that sharing the stories of outrageous untruths and appalling coffee dates with my own therapist has helped me cope better with it. My resilience has increased and I’m hanging in there. Talking to someone can really help you carry on through tough times. So I’m going to share them with you too. A problem shared…..
A few of my friends have met their partners online. So I know in theory that it can work really well. It’s just I’m having such a vile time of it because apparently in the online dating world it’s perfectly normal to be a complete liar pants and not even blink when you’re caught out.
I’m hoping to meet someone who shares my core values and blah blah you know the drill. But it turns out the gentlemen are not entirely honest in their profiles and it’s beginning to feel like a futile endeavour.
Every unwanted advance from a Sexagenarian bikie without a basic command of English grammar or high school certificate, makes my self-confidence erode even further. “Is this all I’m worth?” a snide little voice inside me says. What exactly do they think we have in common? A shared passion for Ballet?
I went on a date last month with a gentleman to a rather nice bar in James St. During the date he asked: “Would you mind if I just went outside and bummed a cigarette off someone, I’m trying to quit at the moment”.
I was confused not just because I wouldn’t normally agree to go out with a smoker – it’s one of my deal breakers – but because as he walked away I could see that he had a full packet of cigs in his trouser pocket. Liar liar, pants literally on fire.
Last week I went out for a delicious Turkish meal with a not-so-delicious gentleman. His profile said he was 46 and the photographs seemed to tally. However, in person he seemed substantially older that the photos.
I like to give people leeway on the first date – nerves and all that – but when he started talking about his grandchildren and his recent colonoscopy I realised that he was probably nearer 66 than 46.
As he relayed the intimate details of his rectal procedure over stuffed vine leaves, I plotted an elaborate plan to flee. (I didn’t though… I’m too polite, and the humus was amazing). But seriously, who talks about a colonoscopy on a first date? People let’s keep the conversation away from your ‘date’ on a date!
At times this whole endeavour feels frustrating and futile. However, sharing the tales of hilariously awful dates with my therapist makes it seem more a comedy than a drama, and I have the energy to persist and wade through the pond life. Her support gets me through.
And I think that’s what it’s about. Reaching out for help when you need it so that you can keep going, even when the going gets tough.
So if you’re having a tough time with online dating, or anything else for that matter, give me a call and share your woes. As they say, a problem shared is a problem halved.
P.S. People please stop lying on your dating profile. We’re going to find out when we meet you in person. So just cut it out smoky pants. ????