Facebook share
LinkedIn share
Google plus share
Twitter plus share
Give Advice
Ask For Advice
Page 1 of 4 1234 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 31

Thread: Project Dating!

  1. #1
    Bronze Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2017
    Posts
    110

    Project Dating!

    Hi all. This is my dating journal!

    So by way of quick introductions, I'm male, mid 30's and (obviously) single!

    My relationship history is fairly limited – I had a 3 year relationship in my early 20's with a girl who I liked but, with hindsight, I was never in love with. It was simply my first relationship and I knew no better at the time. Since then, the longest I've seen anyone for is 5-6 months, which has happened twice – the first when I was 25 and the second when I was 33. Both these girls, I had crazy strong feelings for that unfortunately weren't fully reciprocated and both ended with me totally heartbroken. But other than that, it's just been 1 month / 2 month things.

    But anyway, I am keen to meet someone. Ultimately I'd like to meet the love of my life but I feel in the short term, I just want to enjoy dating and see where things go. A big weakness of mine that I've discussed in this thread here [Register to see the link] is that if I like someone, I can get much too emotionally invested too early rather than just being in the moment. I can also get too disheartened by flakiness / lack of responses / unsuccessful dates. One of my big focuses in writing this journal will be to keep reminding myself that most people are not our match. That conversations fizzling out / no 2nd date / no connection will be what happens with most people and just to accept this as par for the course rather than becoming too frustrated and disheartened.

    Finally, what are my motivations for writing this journal rather than keep it all to myself?

    Firstly, to hopefully get advice and encouragement from others.
    Secondly, for others to read and maybe take something from, both good and bad
    Thirdly, to read back in 5 or 10 years and hopefully have a really good laugh at!

    I'll chronicle this weekend's dating adventures in the next post.........

  2. #2
    Bronze Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2017
    Posts
    110
    Ok, dating stories (Sat 3rd and Sun 4th August)

    I set up a Bumble profile a week ago and have been chatting to a few different girls with whom I've got to the stage of setting up dates.

    I had a drink initially arranged for Saturday afternoon with Donna (I'm changing all names for the sake of anonymity by the way) but she cancelled Friday night as her son was ill and conversation has since gone pretty quiet.

    This actually worked quite well as I ended up going hiking yesterday with a group I'm in and there was several attractive girls there. I swapped Facebooks with one girl (Pamela) but I think on reflection although we got on well, there wasn't enough connection to make her someone I'd want to date. I'd sleep with her if the opportunity presented itself but I'm not really planning to chase after casual sex. However, at the end, I also had a 5 minute chat with a girl (Dianna) who, on first impressions, I liked a lot. I took her number and I've just dropped her a text seeing if she's going to the next group hike next weekend. I was contemplating just going direct and asking her out one on one but I'm slightly wary about developing a reputation in a group setting, so I thought I'd try to get to know her a bit better before asking for a date.

    Then this afternoon (Sunday), I had a drink with a girl (Marie) from Bumble. It was only 1 hour as we both had places to be after but I felt it went well and I was attracted to her. Having said that, the conversation never became flirty, it was all more of a friendly chat. I've also just dropped her a text saying I enjoyed meeting her and would like to get to know her a bit more, will see what she says.

    I've got a few other Bumble chats ongoing but there's one girl (Lisa) who I think I have well and truly messed up with. Last night, she agreed to a drink this Thursday but suggested we chat on the phone first. I personally detest pre-date phone chats – I just find them awkward! However, I made the mistake of saying this (basically exactly what I've just written). She then wrote back with why she thinks a pre-date phone call is important, to which I reluctantly agreed to a phone chat and said 'feel free to give us a ring between 3 and 3:30 tomorrow if you like – I'll be driving but can take it on the hands free'. However, she hasn't responded or phoned.
    I think in hindsight I probably came off as a bit blunt and rude! Problem was, I was having several text chats at a few people at once so I was kind of responding very quickly without really thinking what I was saying. I've done this once or twice in the past, texted too quick and caused offence by not really stopping to think before pressing send. So anyway, I think one's dead in the water but lesson learned!

    Thoughts / opinions welcome!

  3. #3
    Bronze Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2017
    Posts
    110
    Updates on a few girls:

    Marie (Bumble date from yesterday) – she responded positively to my suggestion of a 2nd meet (which I was pleased about as I was 50 / 50 whether it'd be a yes or a no) although it'll be a couple of weeks due to other commitments. So will put her on the backburner just for now but I'll look forward to meeting her again. I can find maintaining the communication tricky if there's a big gap between 1st date and 2nd although she seems very much not the type for long text chats anyway. So I'll just check in with her every few days probably.

    Dianna (attractive Polish girl I met at the end of Saturday's hike) – she responded very enthusiastically to my text. She said she's not on next week's hike but to let her know when I'm next on another hike or in her area as she'd like to talk to me more. I took that as an invitation to suggest a drink next week (when I'm passing her town anyway), will see what she says.

    Lisa (who wanted the pre-date phone call) – got back to me in the end apologising for not ringing. We've had a bit of text chit-chat but no further mention of a phone call or date. Just going to see how this pans out

    Donna (who cancelled Saturday's drink) – been chatting again and she's very flirty. Sent me a photo of herself in her gym gear (very hot body) but we haven't rescheduled our meet yet.

    Few other Bumble chats ongoing in the early stages.

    I'm going speed dating this evening. I quite enjoy speed dating, having been 4 times in the past few months, although I'm not 100% convinced of its effectiveness for meeting someone, as I'm yet to have an actual date with anyone from speed dating. My results so far have been:

    1st Occasion: 3 women out of 17 ticked me, 0 mutual matches (i.e. I didn't tick any of the 3 who ticked me)
    2nd Occasion: 3 women out of 11 ticked me, 1 mutual match
    3rd Occasion: 3 women out of 7 ticked me, 2 mutual matches
    4th Occasion: 1 woman out of 9 ticked me, 0 mutual matches

    Something I have found with speed dating is that it's easy to become embroiled in boring small talk. i.e. 'what do you do?', 'I do.............', 'where do you live?', 'I live in............'. Boring conversations. The 2 occasions when I've done the best (the 2nd and 3rd times) were when I'd had a few drinks so was probably a bit more flirty, banterous. I'm planning to have a few drinks tonight, it makes the night more fun as well.
    I'm also planning to just try and have more of a laugh on my speed dates. Rather than giving straight honest answers to all the plain routine questions, I'm planning to play around with them a bit. I did this with one girl last time I went – I made up an elaborate fictional story in answer to one of her questions (I admitted after a minute or so that I was just winding her up) that had us both laughing a lot. She was the one girl that night who ticked me that night. Will see how it goes........

  4. #4
    Platinum Member bluecastle's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2017
    Posts
    2,599
    Gender
    Male
    I'm going to use Marie and Donna as archetypes to make a little point that maybe resonates, maybe not.

    What stood out to me in your description of Marie is that you found her attractive and engaging, while also being a bit hyper-focused on whether or not she was being obviously flirty. My suggestion is to try to turn that radar off, especially on first meets, and just focus on whether or not you find the person dynamic enough to want to talk to again, rather than focusing on the likelihood of being naked with that person or trying to figure out how eager they are to get naked with you. People who are genuinely confident and self-possessed—rare, epic qualities, and likely the qualities you want in a partner—don't tend to wear their thirst on their sleeve.

    Which leads to Donna.

    Here is a human being you don't know, have never met, but who is sending you photos of her hot body at the gym. I'm a man, I get it: hot is hot, and there is a base-level appeal in wanton thirst. But let's just be honest: that is weird, brother. Were I to receive that pic—and I have received these pics—all I'd think is: okay, so this is what she does; she's proud of her body, likes to wield it as a sword with strangers to trap some thirst, and is totally cool putting it out there front and center to random dudes she matches with on apps. Her sending that pic says way more about who she is than how studly you are, you know? That is the sort of person who is very likely, say, to try to build some fire in you by mentioning her other Bumble dates. Yawn.

    I don't know you, your vibe, what you're looking for, of course. Speaking for myself? I am aware of my own personal bs that can "work" in triggering superficial interest and thirst—in luring those gym selfies into my phone, say. I surf a lot, was a competitive diver, and have the physique one would expect from that. I own a few motorcycles, and my homes are "cool" in a very Instagrammable way. But I don't lead with any of that—at all—because the last thing I want a woman saying about me is, "I'm meeting up with this guy BC later. He's got great abs and rides a Ducati." Yawn.

    My first date with my girlfriend had some shades of your meet-up with Marie. We talked and talked, laughed and laughed. Intellectual fireworks, with an expanding, earthy warmth. No obvious flirtation, no kiss, no toned selfies blowing up my phone in the wake. Was she attracted to me, "into" me "that way"? I had no idea. Didn't really care. She was so interesting—and, yes, staggeringly beautiful to my eyes—that I just wanted to be around her again. So we me up again, and after a few more hours? I still had no idea if she was feeling the sizzle, and still didn't care. Her vibe is very much that of someone who gets on just fine in the world without knowing that one or more men are drooling over her, and without drooling over one or more men, and I dug that.

    Yeah, the mutual attraction became self-evident quickly enough, but it's the not glue of our connection. It's part of the glue, integral and essential, but part of a whole instead of the "whole" that makes the other missing pieces invisible. Eight months later I'd say our dates today are much the same as those early ones. I don't nod and smile as she talks so I can get to the important stuff, when we get home, nor do I gauge her interest in me by the I'm-so-hot selfies she sends. She doesn't send those. She's got all the ammunition, but she's not into low hanging fruit—eating it or being it, you know? I cannot imagine ever yawning around her.

    I'm just a bit older than you. When I was younger, just a bit younger, and a bit more insecure in ways it took a minute to acknowledge, I found the photos from the Donnas of this world pretty enticing. Crack for the ego, among other organs. But the IRL entanglements that those pixilated exchanges led to tended, at a rate of nearly 100 percent, to be pretty draining and whiplash-inducing in ways I think you're familiar with.

    Just something to think about, or not, as you go fishing with the fish in the sea.

  5.  

  6. #5
    Bronze Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2017
    Posts
    110
    Thanks, that's a really interesting perspective.

    I totally agree with your assessment of both girls. Marie, I really enjoyed meeting and I do think, although we've literally only spent 1 hour in each other's company, there is potential there. We're into a lot of the same things - my pride and joy is my campervan, which she was fascinated with - she spent a week in a friend's van last month and has since spent hours trawling the Internet researching buying her own. The main reason we can't fix up a 2nd date for a couple of weeks is that we're both going away to the exact same festival next week.......................except she comes back from the festival the day before I go to it! So we do have a lot in common and I'm very much looking forward to meeting her again.

    Donna - yep, I agree - quite probably no more than an attention seeker and possibly with some big insecurity issues. I wouldn't say I'm totally naive with women and I do agree that a woman who sends an enticing photo to a guy she's never met probably isn't girlfriend material.

    In terms of what I'm looking for, I am looking for that special someone. I want to be in love and to have someone to share everything with. But as I mentioned in my other thread on the Dating sub-forum, I've got a problem with getting too attached / over-invested too soon. I find that, in the early stages of dating, having a good number of dating options ongoing (even if some of them are from attractive but shallow / unsuitable women) helps me to not over-obsess with one woman.

    I guess the question I'd ask (I'm really curious to see what you think about this btw Bluecastle) is: is exchanging messages / flirting with a few 'Donnas' detrimental to my dating with the 'Maries'?

    Personally (and I know this is a reflection of low self-confidence on my part), I feel that opening up my phone and having 5 or 6 messages from attractive women to respond to (even if some of them are shallow / unsuitable) helps keep my confidence levels up. I went into my date with Marie yesterday super calm and relaxed. My mindset was 'even if this doesn't work out, I've got lots of other irons in the fire'.
    Of course, I understand that this is only a viable strategy in the early stages of dating. If things went well with someone like Marie, then after a couple of months or so, it wouldn't be right to rely on attention from other women to keep my confidence up. But then, by that stage, I guess that with the right partner, I'd be feeling very desired from them and wouldn't need the attention from elsewhere.

  7. #6
    Platinum Member bluecastle's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2017
    Posts
    2,599
    Gender
    Male
    Good question!

    My general take is: no, not detrimental at all—but with some caveats.

    Right now, for instance? Marie is just a compelling person you've met for an hour, so to commit to that, to close off all other doors would be absurd. But let's say you meet again, go on a date or two or three. Do you really need to augment those dates with gym selfies, fluttery back and forths, and so on, in order to enjoy Marie with confidence without getting too topsy-turvy? Hopefully not. Because the "Maries" of this world can sniff that out quick, and they'll be yawning when the scent crosses their noses. They generally want a guy who can go three days—or, gulp, maybe a lifetime—without a spandex-heavy gym selfie. And odds are you want to be a guy who can exist in the world without needing gym selfies to give you oxygen and quench your thirst.

    When I was single—not all that long ago—I knew what I wanted. It was, essentially, the same thing you want. So I was swiping, meeting, exploring, as you are. Along the way there were some collisions, pixilated and otherwise, with some "Donnas." It's part of it. It can be fun. And at any given moment my little apps had a handful of open conversations, since that's life in #2019, and no doubt that little carousel, along with some inner moxie, allowed me to have a pretty calm and relaxed attitude about things. What happens happens, and so on.

    Speaking for myself? One thing that changed in recent years is that I didn't court the nonsense once I knew it was nonsense. A gym selfie from someone I've never met, for instance? That would be the last exchange, because I would know that any engagement was a road away from what I was seeking. I've already had that night without needing to have that night, if you know what I mean. So I'd take the candy-coated ego jolt, the salt shake of pseudo-confidence, but I'd let it go. Small shift, but amazing the space it frees up. It's kind of the difference between wanting to be someone looking for something real and being that person. Authenticity, by and large, is more seductive than aspiration.

    One thing I'm picking up with you, from this and your other thread: you seem to have a slight propensity toward getting a bit attached to the glossy stuff and trying to will it into being the deep stuff. So be aware of that. It's a bit like you meet the woman who triggers "not girlfriend material" and then get attached to the idea of making her girlfriend material. Slippery slope, that. Leads straight into a wormhole. The intentions behind that may be good—you really wanting the Big Thing—but you've got to be diligent where you apply that energy. Put it in the wrong place and, again, to the "Maries" of this world you just look like a dude who likes the surface and is scared of the depths. Because, well, you might be that dude. Behavior speaks volumes, you know?

    So I guess what I'm saying is: do you, have fun, enjoy the sparkles and the hit of confidence and stability they provide. Just don't string it all along so you get caught in a dewy web of your own creation. If you meet up with Marie again and it's great, then meet again. And so on. Give some space for that breathe without needing to use gym selfies and a half dozen nonsensical conversations as a snorkel, and don't trick yourself into thinking they're more than they are. Sometimes we just want to get laid. That's human. No need to make that a bigger story to rationalize the basic instinct.

    When I met my girlfriend for the first time she struck me as something special. I wanted to see her again. I didn't rush home and delete all the apps. No, I swiped around, chatted, because I know that that "something special" stuff was as much a product of my imagination, at that stage, than it was a product of the few hours we'd spent together. But very quickly—after another date or two—I had no interest in that, even when I had little idea of her interest in me and zero idea of what we might be.

    But I wanted to find out, and wanted space to explore without juggling any nonsense, meaning not just thirsty types but even others who radiated genuine potential. Because I had genuine potential in front of me. So I pretty quickly cut out the noise, eventually deleted the apps. None of that was a reaction to things she was telling me, meaning we didn't talk about this stuff or swear off the apps together as some show of "seriousness." By the time we were having those conversations it was a moot point: neither of us were interested in anyone else, both of us had closed those doors without pressure. And I'd say—because we've talked about this—that one of the things she liked about me is that she didn't get the sense that I was courting a lot of thirst or particularly thirsty myself.

    Not sure that helps, but that's my few cents.

  8. #7
    Bronze Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2017
    Posts
    110
    Cheers, that's a really good detailed response. I think the type of message I receive from a 'Donna', I do just see the text exchange as a bit of fun for 10 or 15 minutes, in the same way that I might enjoy a quick game of pool or table tennis. I enjoy a bit of flirty banter and then get on with my day. I wouldn't say I place any real significance on it although, as I said, it is a nice little ego boost. But I think because it's obvious she's "that type of girl", I've got the common sense not to get overly involved. Which moves onto this:

    you seem to have a slight propensity toward getting a bit attached to the glossy stuff and trying to will it into being the deep stuff. So be aware of that. It's a bit like you meet the woman who triggers "not girlfriend material" and then get attached to the idea of making her girlfriend material

    The 2 girls I dated who I discussed in my previous thread, it was kind of different - on the face of it, they were in the very early stages potentially girlfriend material. There were no revealing selfies or any other red flags as such until after we'd been dating for about a month, by which time I'd already developed some feelings for them, which I then struggled to adjust in light of these red flags. They kind of slipped through the net. Whereas with Donna, it's much more obvious. I can see the red flag. She might as well be waving it around in her profile picture. Don't get me wrong, if there's an evening when I'm free for a couple of hours and so is she, I'll meet up with her. It might be fun, we might have some good sex. But I feel I'm kind of aware enough to recognise the situation and not to get attached in any way.

  9. #8
    Bronze Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2017
    Posts
    110
    Updates: Tuesday 6th August

    Went speed dating last night. Enjoyed a few of the interactions but wasn't particularly attracted to anyone and didn't tick any of them. Might leave speed dating for a bit, I found myself looking out the window and thinking 'what beautiful weather. I'd rather have gone out and had 9 holes of golf'!

    Dianna (Polish girl I met on the hike) - Replied to my suggestion of a drink next Wednesday saying she should be good for that. Bit of other chit chat. Will look forward to that, I do as a general rule look forward to a date with someone I've met organically more than I do a girl from an app. It's kind of like I've earned the date through my social skills and through having the b***ocks to ask someone out (something I've traditionally struggled with).

    Emily (40 year old Bumble girl I've been chit chatting with, don't think I've mentioned her before in this thread) - have fixed up a meet for this evening. We're going to walk our dogs together. Will see how it goes

    Few other Bumble chats ongoing

  10. #9
    Platinum Member bluecastle's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2017
    Posts
    2,599
    Gender
    Male
    All good things, friend.

    My feeling is that some people need to "slip through the net" in order for us to adjust the weave of our net, if that makes sense. I dated someone for a few months last year—dynamic woman, razor sharp, incendiary on the eyes. Strong connection, enough chemistry to blow up a laboratory—which, well, we kind of did. What began as very promising got me twisted up quickly. Like, did she go on a Bumble date and put it on Instagram to get a rise out of me? Check. Did I, at age 38, try to work through that? Check. Was ending it a tough decision? Yes and no. Emotionally it wasn't fun—hurt the heart, spun the head—but once the writing was on the wall I couldn't unsee it. Something about the big 4-0 looming on the horizon has sharpened the lens, either that or I've spent enough time in sandboxes to have lost the ability to call them castles.

    I don't see any of that as a mistake or lost time, more like a sharpening of the compass needle, a patching up of the net. I felt things I hadn't felt in a while, which let me know (part of) what I'd like to feel in romance. I also felt things I don't want to feel in romance, things that weren't conducive to what I was seeking. I also had to own that I probably wasn't quite as ready for the Big Thing as I'd thought, that slipping around on the ice still had a bit more pull than trying to climb the mountain. Owning that made the mountain all the more appealing.

    Not sure what your experience with casual sex has been—the potential, as you've outlined, with Donna—but I find it is rarely casual, often complicated. Or gets there quickly. You tell yourself one story—just going to enjoy the 15 minute hot-stuff banter, maybe meet for a drink and romp should the stars align with little effort—and, lo and behold, that story becomes reality. For a day. Then the story expands: more texts in the phone, a quiver in the loins that you indulge one more time since, well, you're single and blah blah. And that day becomes a week becomes a month, the saucy texts morph into tense and dramatic texts, and now you are "that guy"—the guy that the "Maries" don't have much patience for.

    I have been that guy. Any woman with a few perceptive brain cells can tell this about me in about 10 minutes. Being that guy "works" in one realm of romance while keeping another realm a bit out reach, I think. At some point I started to realize that I might, without thinking about it, kind of be playing into it, for kicks, and then becoming it, which kicked my own a$$. Little adjustments happened, pretty organically, to change things, to be a (slightly) different guy. Casual sex stopped being a thing I did—at least in the way you're describing, where you already know, before doing it, that you're not going to take it seriously. This wasn't really some choice I made to "grow up" and "be noble," or even to make space for my Marie, but more of a self-assessment—a shedding of a more adolescent husk so I could slip into a more adult one.

    One thing worth thinking about: always make sure you're finding moxie and confidence in a realm that has nothing to do with women, romance, love, lust. What those 10 minutes with Donna gives you? I get that on waves, on my motorcycle, and in what I do for a living. Self-generated swagger, some coming from some goofy, dangerous stuff, no doubt. But at least it's not connected to other people, or the idea of other people, and when they write my obit I'd rather them highlight my cornering abilities on mountain roads than my texting abilities to extract thirst, you know?

  11. #10
    Bronze Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2017
    Posts
    110
    My feeling is that some people need to "slip through the net" in order for us to adjust the weave of our net

    Yeah agree, I definitely feel I've learned a lot from the experiences with those 2 girls and also from the advice I got on the thread about them.

    did she go on a Bumble date and put it on Instagram to get a rise out of me? Check. Did I, at age 38, try to work through that? Check

    Wow, that's bad. How long had you been dating at this point? I tell you what that also shows: how much your decision making can be skewed by your feelings for someone. Because I would bet, having a read a number of your advice posts to me and to others (in which I always think the advice is very sound), you wouldn't have advised somebody else to work through that.

    Not sure what your experience with casual sex has been

    None this year (I haven't really been seeking out casual sex), 5 girls last year. In all honesty, none of these caused any drama at all for me, I just enjoyed having sex. I don't know if maybe I'd thought differently if they'd been really attractive. This might sound shallow to say but I tend to have different standards (in terms of looks) of who I'd date (with a view to a relationship) compared to who I'd sleep with. Out these 5 girls, 4 were below my 'dating standard' if you like. The other was 11 years older than me and stunning but, because of the age gap, I didn't regard her as a long term dating prospect either.
    So it might be that I'm someone who can handle casual sex perfectly fine without drama or it might be that that's only the case because I've not been sleeping with girls who I'm attracted enough to physically.

    One thing worth thinking about: always make sure you're finding moxie and confidence in a realm that has nothing to do with women, romance, love, lust

    Yeah agree. I do have plenty of outside interests (mostly active outdoor things). I guess because this is a 'dating thread' I tend to only talk about 'dating things', so it might come across as if dating is my only interest / passion.

    Couple of updates from today:

    Emily (40 yr old Bumble girl) - had a very enjoyable 1.5 hour walk with our dogs. Got on well, good fun and banter, I'd like to see her again. Same as there was with Marie, no physical contact. I think in the past, I'd have definitely tried to initiate something (e.g. holding hands) or turned the conversation more flirtatious, but following on from advice I've had on here, I'm kind of feeling less need to do that. I used to think that no physical contact or flirting = no attraction but I'm believing that less now.

    Lisa (who wanted the pre-date phone call) - this one's off. We'd had a bit of chit-chat since the phone call fiasco but no mention of the date we'd originally scheduled for Thursday. So I decided to cut to the chase and just say 'do you still fancy grabbing a drink Thursday night? I'm just planning my week and trying to sort out what I'm doing when'. She replied that I sounded like a busy man and she'd let me get on with my busy schedule. Good luck with the dating!
    I'm really not fussed with Lisa. I was having my doubts about her anyway - I was really just checking with her about the date as I was trying to get a game of tennis organised and needed to know what evenings I had free.
    I'm still thinking about the pre-date phone call dilemma though for future reference as a learning thing. My immediate reaction is that I really detest the idea of a pre-date phone call unless there's a necessity for it. I'm not keen on a call 'to see if there's chemistry' as I feel chemistry is really hard to create in a forced unnatural situation. I also don't like the idea of a phone call 'to check you're who you say you are' as that makes me feel like a criminal suspect! Maybe I'm over-reacting and seeing this more negatively than I should do, I don't know - interested to hear the perspective of others on this!

Page 1 of 4 1234 LastLast

Give Advice
Ask For Advice

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •