Oh, Universe, you are so ironic.
Greg and I broke up almost four months ago. He wanted to get back together, I thought maybe I did, but the more time we spent apart the more I realized that I didn’t want to go down that dark road again. In fact, I just did the difficult-yet-not task of unfollowing him on all social media today. Sent him two items I realized I still had of his and said goodbye for good.
Though I hadn’t made the news of our split public, I had two acquaintances reach out to me saying they wanted to set me up with friends. Sure, why not? I’m single now, for the first time in over two years. I can do this.
Okay, let me detail the “why not?” I’ll preface this by saying I’m writing this after a glass (or two) of wine and a day of angst, and I am a lightweight when it comes to both alcohol and anxiety.
Date 1: At a mutual friend’s birthday party, I talked to a woman and, upon hearing I was single, she asked what types of guys I liked. “I don’t know,” I answered. “Nerdy ones. Nice ones.”
“I think I have the perfect guy for you,” she said. So she orchestrated an email introduction and the guy who would come to be known as T-Rex to my friends began emailing. Even from the first typed word, he was complaining. He was sick. Couldn’t do ANYTHING. I’m thinking, wow, this guy must have a pretty serious illness. But no, he had what he thought was a sinus infection or allergies, which I heard about in great detail. You’d have thought the man was near death. And he never mentioned going out, he just sent me a growing list of malady-driven emails. He also complained about his job, how messy his bedroom was, and how he hated flying.
You might have said to me, “You’re not going to go out with him, right?” Which is justified, but I’m such a nice, optimistic person and I felt obligated to honor my friend’s effort to set us up. And, maybe this guy was just bad at emailing? Who knew? So I went out with him.
He was visibly nervous, and oddly ignored friends of his in the restaurant lobby who passed by trying to get his attention. I think he was afraid they’d come talk to us. Anyway, the date went okay. I realized, after it was over and I was rehashing with friends, that he wasn’t at all funny in person. The only person I laughed at was myself when I tried to make jokes to cover the awkward silences. He wanted to know if I would go for a walk with him after dinner and I declined, saying I had to get groceries and my kids would be returning the following day. “I guess that’s what happens when you date a woman with kids,” he said, cheerfully. Wait, we’re dating?? Then he asked me, as he walked to my car, if I wanted to go out again and I gave a half-hearted yes. It’s much harder to say no to a guy face to face than via phone or text.
Then his first text after this date was to tell me he bought a ceiling fan. And he sent a photo of the old one and began complaining again. So when he tried to set up date #2 I did what I should have done earlier, which is tell him I didn’t think we were clicking.
When our mutual friend asked me how it was a week later, I told her the gritty details. Only then did she mention that he was “quirky,” and “kind of a downer.” Um, that might have been good information to know prior to the set up, right?
But I thanked her for thinking of me and tried not to count the minutes I wasted emailing him.
Date 2: Not one week later, another friend messaged me asking if I was seeing anyone. I said, “Why, no, I’m not!” and she said she knew a WONDERFUL guy and she thought we’d get along well. She gave him my phone number and he texted the next day. Now, this guy was much different from T-Rex. Witty via text, didn’t complain, and he asked me out within two days of our initial text. So far, so good, right?
We met up on a Saturday and had a wonderful, easy first date. Pizza, wine, conversation flowing. Buuuut… he talked about his ex quite a bit and I learned that he’s not even fully divorced yet. “Should be final in two to three weeks,” he explained. I was his FIRST post-separation date. So already I knew that, at best, I’d be in for a short-term fling with this guy, or, at worst, I’d be a rebound and fall for him and get my heart broken. But hey, I’m in rebound mode, too, so maybe a fling wouldn’t be the most terrible idea, I rationalized.
As we parted after the date he hugged me and said he’d like to go out again. He told the friend who set us up he’d like to go out with me again. He texted frequently in the two days after the date, and then slowly faded out until today, when I heard absolutely nothing all day. It’s 10:30 pm. I last texted him at 7:30 am. He’s not getting back to me. The end.
Which is FINE, but dudes, seriously, get over yourselves and just let a woman know when you’re not interested. I survived a divorce with young children, I really am not going to be all broken up that you didn’t ask me on a second date. But just say so, instead of letting the communication dwindle to nothing. It’s so… cowardly.
So, today I was in the position of asking the friend of date #2 to tell me if she gets feedback from this guy as to why he stopped texting. I’m assuming he never wanted to go out again, anyway, but was trying to be nice (like I was with Blind Date #1, above) and didn’t know how to simply say he wasn’t interested. But maybe I did something that tipped him to reject me. Texted too infrequently? Texted too often? Made jokes that fell flat? Didn’t ask him enough questions? Asked too many?
I will never know. Gah. But it’s okay. I don’t like everyone, and not everyone will like me. The world keeps spinning.
Yeah, I’m single again. Perhaps permanently so. I’m starting to think that the best person for me is… me.