Friday, January 6, 2017

Dumb Luck

In the last years of my off and on again singlehood, I’ve heard one consistent thing from men and women: “Stop looking for it and it (love) will find you”.   And, I’d like to address this common catch phrase now because honestly, it gets on my nerves.  

If I stop looking, a man isn’t going to fall out of the sky and into my lap.  We don’t live in a cartoon.  He isn’t going to arrive at my doorstep with flowers in hand, smile at me with a twinkle in his eye and ask me out. 

A single man will not know I’m single if I’m spending my week days at work, and my evenings home alone on my couch.  
How would any single men out there in the world possibly know I am single if I don’t put myself out there?   The bigger question is why shouldn’t I put myself out there?  Why is there this stigma that if a woman is looking for someone, she’s trying too hard or afraid to be alone???

Funny enough, these same people that tell me to sit back, stop looking and some man will find me don’t even believe in God or any other higher power.  So which is it people – fate? dumb luck? God? Karma? Fairies? Unicorns?  Harry Potter?  Is there some sort of cosmic alternate reality that I’ve failed to locate?  

I am not going to split my life between sitting home watching my daughter grow up and being nothing more than a Mom and full time employee.  I still need to live and be me.  If I don’t look, my daughter will be 25 in the blink of an eye, and I will still be waiting for Mr. Right to fall from the sky.  Is trying to find someone who will enjoy the ride of life with me and coast off into the sunset of our lives together such a bad thing?   
I am not afraid to be alone, but I cannot meet anyone with the same values if I do not keep my opportunities and life’s doors open.  

So single ladies here it is:
If we close ourselves off, men will simply assume that we are either in a relationship or a reclusive cat lady with a few screws loose.  Men don’t like to be shot down so they’d rather just not embarrass themselves by randomly asking a woman in a grocery store if she’s single.  So unless he’s married or boldly arrogant with nothing to lose, no man with any level of class will be asking you for your number in the grocery store.

As for dating sites, I’ve heard that there are some happy endings from these toxic places, but again they’re usually involving couples under 35 years old who have never been married before.
So where does that leave a single woman over 40?  It leaves her approaching dating like looking for a job.  But hey, what if we apply the same principle to searching for a job “just stop looking for it and it will find you”?

Well then we would all be living in a van down by the river (with the late Chris Farley) wouldn’t we?  If you need groceries, you go out and get them.  They won't appear in your cupboards by themselves.  If you need gas for your car, you don’t just stop filling up and hope your tank will be filled daily by the Gas Fairies.

So why are we supposed to sit back, become passive, stop looking and let love find us?  Does a job find us when we need one?  No, it does not.    
Does money find us when we stop working for it?  No.

It’s just not that simple anymore.  There are many more single women working against you, putting themselves out there, advertising themselves as available and on an aggressive search for a partner.  In this day and age, you can’t just hope that Aunt Ruby will hook you up with her butcher Fred (who’s wife just died) and set you both up after church on a Sunday.  Those days are over, if they ever existed outside of some TV show or classic movie starring Judy Garland.  

Dating has to be approached with the finesse and assertiveness of job searching.  You want it, go get it.   Ask questions, network, put on your best shoes and go find “It”.  Love fairies aren’t going to sprinkle fairy dust on you, and Cupid isn’t going to shoot some guy in the ass so you both can be matched up by the magical forces of love.  

Lastly, I know there will be some women that will read this and say “Well, I wasn’t looking and I met my husband at a BBQ at my cousin’s house.”  Good for you!  You must have been wearing lucky horseshoes that day under your bra, and that’s a one in a million chance so hold onto him my dear.  But my guess is at the time one or all of these things were true:  you were both never married before, at least one of you was under 35 and it was like 20+ years ago that that happened.  Things just aren’t that easy in 2017.

So to the single women out there, the first step is you need to love yourself.  Wholeheartedly.  Be happy with who you are, what you’ve accomplished, and be thankful and have gratitude for what and who you have in your life.

After that, once your head is in the right place and you are sure you are ready to find it, go find it.  Put yourselves out there.  Smile, laugh, enjoy your friends, be social, attend gatherings of friends and family.  Let people know what a great person you are and that you’re single.  Do the dating site thing if you need to, but be safe about it.  And remember that what you put out there into the dating scene, is what you’re going to get back from it.  Advertise yourself well and be happy and positive.  You will only attract what you’re advertising for.  If you advertise yourself with too much sex upfront (sexting, photos, dirty talk), you’re going to find men who are scum and looking for just sex.   

Last but not least, do not take it personally if someone is not interested.  It’s not you, it’s him. 
Keep pushing on, things are going to get better. 

Friday, December 23, 2016

Hurry Up and ...Rush!

My single gal pals and I are noticing a new trend in dating men in 2016.  Anyone we have spoken to that has actually gotten to the point of wanting to meet, has been eager and excited to meet.  However, actually coordinating the time to meet up with these men has been exhausting.  And short lived.

I myself have limited free time after work, but I do have a few hours here and there through the work week for a 30-45 minute short meet and greet.  I also have weekends.  This short time frame usually suffices as a first meeting, as you can tell if there’s any attraction or connection fairly quickly.
Unfortunately, these men are so busy that they can’t even manage to find 45 minutes in 4 weeks to meet up.  The texting continues, the messaging, sometimes they even pick up the phone and make the call, but meeting in person seems to be almost impossible.  I realize that they are juggling several available women and some women are more interesting, but isn’t it better to meet up and cross people off the potentials list?  

Meet, you click or you don’t, go your separate ways and then either move onto the next candidate or decide to book a 1st real date with that person.  

I was texting with someone for about 4 weeks.  He kept trying to meet me but things kept getting in the way:  kids, working overtime, shopping, and other life events.  Finally, he picked a day, with 4 days notice and we booked a meeting at a coffee shop.  I was waiting for the “I’m sorry, I can’t make it” text.  It didn’t happen.  He told me he would be there at 4:45.
I arrived at the place and waited.  At 4:55 I messaged him and said “are you here yet?”  He replied that he would be there in 5 minutes.  Ok so now 4:45 turned into 5:05.  When he finally arrived, he was disheveled and in a whirlwind mess.  He said he was rushing and didn’t even have time to do his hair.  I was a bit confused because he knew about this “date” (first meeting) ahead of time.  We sat down and he did not look like his photos at all.  He was super skinny, haggard, with dark circles under his eyes, and had the gaunt look of a heavy drinker and the teeth of a man who hasn’t seen a dentist regularly, if at all.  

The most surprising part was that he became a superhero right before my eyes!  
Yes, he was indeed Captain Obvious.   
He kept blurting out things like “Oh what’s that?! on your tongue?!” right in the middle of my sentence (I have a tongue piercing).    
He also kept staring at my chest, which I could not figure out because I had on a sports bra aka uni-boob, a high cut shirt, a scarf over my chest and my jacket.  So Captain Obvious was obviously trying to use his X-ray vision to see through my 4 layers of clothing.  

At 5:12 he noted the time and said he had to leave in 5 minutes to go to see his parents.  They were expecting him.  Well, thank you Captain for saving me the grief of cutting this 1st meeting short.  I was just about to make up some excuse why I had to leave.  He beat me to it. 
He was very fidgety and nervous and kept asking if we could go out sometime.  “Umm, sure, yeah, sounds good” is what I said just to get myself the hell out of there.   If I had said no, explaining my reasons why not would’ve kept me there for a lot longer than a yes.    Just tell him what he wants to hear and get the hell out of Dodge!  

I said I needed to use the ladies room so that this toothless boozer dude wouldn’t try and kiss me goodbye.  As he bolted out of there in his old beat up Grand Am, I hid beside the window to make sure he was gone before I walked out.  

Rush rush rush!  Go go go! Our meeting lasted a total of 10 minutes but felt like a 2 hour root canal. 
And, these are some of the quality single men out there over the age of 44.     

Welcome to my hell.

This one is dedicated to Tanya, Heather, Michelle and Pam.  United we stand, united we laugh.

Thursday, December 22, 2016

To be Picky, Or not to be Picky...That is the Question

In 2011, I began my journey with this blog as the start to a short novel that I decided to write.  I had several single friends who told me to post what I was writing because they loved reading my dating adventures on paper.  
Little did I realize when I started this journey, that as of January 1, 2017 I would be still be single at the age of 44.  Single and happy.

Now one would think that 44 would be a very easy age to find a single, happy, quality male partner in life.  That is completely a myth.  The single men in my dating age range (39-50), are simply non date-able.  They have abandoned dead lengthy toxic marriages, ended long term relationships (post bad marriages) and are damaged, broken, selfish and financially and emotionally insecure.    In a nutshell, 95% of them are a big fat mess of court dates, ex wives, ex girlfriends, child support, spousal payments and drama.  
They want to play, not to be in a true relationship.

If these men are fortunate enough to have been able to come out on top and have a sustainable life, a happy career, a place of their own and still somewhat financially secure, they do NOT want to share again.  They’ve become scared, selfish, self focused and closed, fearing losing everything again if they open up to a woman emotionally or financially.   
But they sure have no problem expecting a woman to open her legs up for them on a 1st meeting.  They've somehow grown a huge sense of entitlement along with their beer bellies and bad habits.

Now, I have met a couple of nice men this year (literally two), but they still do have their own walls up, major baggage and a lot of fear of jumping into anything long term feet first.

Yes, "there are still some great guys out there" – so I keep hearing.  I’m not being negative, but if I hear that line one more time from either side male or female, they are going to get a very colourful verbal reality check from me.  

The men who say there are still great men out there are trying to sell themselves.
These men are usually living with their moms, have 3 kids 50% of the time and working shift work or 2 jobs and barely scraping by.  Their lives are busy and full of kids, dogs, 1-3 jobs, and everything else.

The women who say there are still great men out there, are married to those men and they are NOT out there. 

Yes, there are some great single men and great single women out there, but they’re all under 35.  
Personally, I cannot date a man under 39.  They have no understanding of when I talk about my generational pop culture references and they look at me like I have 6 eyes when I say something about a VCR or my first car, a 1984 Dodge Aries.  They just cannot grasp anything pre-smartphones or laptops.  
If I randomly shout out Super Nintendo, they say "Huh??"
Sometimes I will just say random things and watch them look completely confused:
Typewriter!  Beta VCR!  Commodore 64!  Cursive handwriting!!
Also, most of the younger men have never had children and want some of their own, or have very young children.  
I have to be selfish on that front, because I do not want to be a stepmother of a 10-year-old when I turn 54.  And I will not have anymore children in my mid 40’s; the baby factory is closed.  My daughter is 12 and I'm quite enjoying her level of independence.

I own my own home, have a child that I adore and a great career that I love.  I expect my potential life partner to be in a similar situation.  Gone are the days of drama, exes, multi-dating, juggling court dates, and diapers.  

I simply want peace, love, quiet, happiness, laughter and a true life partner. 
I want someone to put the kettle on for me, not because I asked, but because he knows me that well and he doesn’t have to ask.  It seems so simple to ask for, and yet here I am without that aspect of my life box check marked.

To leave things on a postive note, the biggest changes since my last posts are the changes in me.  I am happy being me.  Life is too short and I value everything I have, I value my family, I value best friend (yes, Tanya that is you) I am happy being alone with my daughter at the end of the day. 
I am happy in my life, my home and in my career.  
I'm a great person, smart, funny, intuitive, affectionate, loyal and kind and I will not settle for being taken for granted.

So if my "He” exists, he must figure out how to find me, and only if he’s meant to find me.

If that’s me being picky, then so be it.  I’m open and hopeful that some day I will find real, true, unselfish love.   
I shall never again settle for taking second place to a man's life and priorities, or being outranked by his needs, his dog, his beer or his career.