If you’ve been following my blog, you’ll know that I’ve been back on the dating scene for a couple of weeks now. How’s it going, you ask? I’ll be honest, something feels off:
Online dating just feels so impersonal.
I’m finding it hard to make meaningful connections with people.
I feel like I’m one in a herd of cattle.
Online contact is often brief and superficial.
I feel really disconnected from the people I meet.
I’d say the overall sense I’m struggling with is the lack of connectedness I’m feeling. For example, often guys want to go from messaging on the online dating site to texting, but I’m not an enthusiastic texter. Why don’t I like to text? There are several reasons:
1. It’s a huge time waster. I send a text, get involved in an activity or task, only to receive a reply and feel I need to respond right away. So I do. Then back to the task, then text, then task. I’m constantly distracted from what I’m doing, so nothing gets done. And this can go on for HOURS. My feeling is, if you want to talk to me, pick up the phone and call. We can cover more ground and create more of a connection in 30 minutes over the phone than we can in 3 hours of texting. Plus I like to hear the sound of your voice.
2. So much is lost over text – tone, attitude and intention. I’ve probably stopped interacting with more (possibly great) guys than I realize based simply on the fact that I misinterpreted their tone, or made assumptions and judgments about them based on a meaningless text message.
3. Texting is a cop-out. Sure it's handy, but there is no risk involved, so the rewards that come with this type of communication are low. You don’t really put yourself out there when you text someone. Like I said before, call me! It’s kind of crazy that a guy calling me is enough to impress me. (And to clarify, I totally text with friends and family, I just don't think it's a good tool for building new healthy and meaningful relationships.)
And then there are the non-texters. Guys who don’t text (or call) at all between dates. And sometimes the gap between dates lasts a week or more. It’s hard to maintain the momentum with someone you’re interested in if you see them once a week with no interaction in between. Hopefully this would change as time goes on, but then again, it may not.
So I guess my frustration is ultimately around the lack of quality communication with the guys I meet online. And that lack of communication leads to a disconnected feeling, which doesn’t bode well for building a relationship.
After I wrote this post, I asked myself: “So what am I going to do about it?” Good question.
Here’s what I can (and will) do:
Express my expectations and desires to the guys I meet.
Ask them to call me rather than text.
Let them know I’d like to hear from them in between dates.
Be the one to reach out to them first once in a while.
I’m somewhat hesitant/scared to speak up about these things to the guys I date (after all, I’m a recovering people pleaser) but if I want things to be different, I need to do things differently myself and I think this is a good starting point when it comes to relieving some of my frustration. I’ll let you know how it goes!