Sunday, February 22, 2009

Apologetics II

In a previous post back in December, I covered some of the reasons why I have a hard time doing online dating. But I missed a huge one: My own fear. While some people might be afraid of meeting strangers from the internet, or of their co-workers seeing their profile, I fear my old nemesis: The ignorant masses. The history books seem like one long story of different ignorant masses doing different stupid things. We’ve always encountered them. However, before the internet, we’ve never encountered them during dating. If I say on an online dating profile that I’m ace, I’m setting myself up to receive every stupid message from the front lines of the ignorant. However, if I don’t, when and how am I supposed to bring it up? On the first date, between conversation about siblings and our favorite colors?

I think that in the world of online dating, most people are looking for someone that they’ll click with right off the bat. But what if you’re unclickable? I think the best people for asexuals to date are people we already know. People who are already somewhat invested in us would be more willing to take on an unconventional relationship. Another reason I can’t date online is because I’m not all in. And it seems like there's little room for the unsure. I oscillate between wanting to date and not wanting to. For me, dating seems unnatural, like a formal banquet. Like the etiquette dinner I attended in college ("like a ship goes out to sea, I spoon my soup away from me"), I'll try anything once. I wish I could go on one date (which I've already done-- two in fact!) and say that I'd had the experience, but dating isn't like bungee jumping (or maybe it is for other reasons). But my reason is that dating isn't a one-time event, it's a mission. One that I'm not sure I want to undertake. I expect I'll be ambivalent about it for a long time to come.

11 comments:

Carolyn said...

I think you should do it anyway, aren't people supposed to do the things that make them scared? Or no, it's also that thing about how people don't regret trying, they just regret not trying. And besides, you can report back to us funny stories of these uneducated masses, I'm intrigued already.

Madeline said...

I agree with Carolyn...the one cool thing about online dating is that there isn't really a downside...if you embarrass yourself or meet creepy people or something, you can just delete your profile like nothing ever happened. I think a lot of people prefer online dating for this reason, its an easy way to put yourself out there without all the risks. I say give it a try if you want, what could it hurt? (and the cool thing about the internet is you dont have to answer questions if you dont want ;-) )
And even if you didn't find someone to date, ya might just meet some cool people

Ily said...

Maybe you gals are right...Dating is supposed to be somewhat fun, isn't it? I don't want to miss out on any fun, but I'm not sure what dating is supposed to accomplish in my case, since my idea of a romantic partner is pretty much a best friend. I want to show, hopefully, how dating is flawed, so that maybe we will be inspired to think of other options (for what?). I remember when I was in college, I was surprised that no one dated. But now that I'm in "the real world", I'm surprised that dating and romantic relationships have such prominence. What if the college way of doing things worked better for me? Is that just an immature dream, or am I on to something that we may be missing?

Old Olive said...

I wonder if it is possible for people to connect online in a way that is not considered a "date" with all that implies

Ily said...

I think that might be the Strictly Platonic section of Craigslist. Although with all the people there trying to offer you a sensual massage, you never know. But yeah, it's definitely possible, lots of people have met friends from the internet.

gatto said...

Dating doesn't sound fun to me.

At least, not unless there are cats involved.

Ily said...

Come to think of it, volunteering at an animal shelter would probably be a great idea for a date. At least, I would think so :-)

Queers United said...

Are you more afraid because you don't think they will understand or accept your asexuality? Maybe it would be better to join an asexual dating site?

Queers United said...

my post never came through :(

edgeofeverywhere said...

I agree that it tends to make the most sense for asexuals to date people we already know. My ideal for a partner was always a best friend who completely understood and appreciated me, and that's something you can't find on a date, and usually not at all when you meet in a dating context and are supposed to decide right away if you like and are attracted to the other person. I've also found that many people are very all-or-nothing about dating in that they don't really consider becoming friends with someone if they don't click romantically - it's like they already have plenty of friends and are looking for someone to fill a special role.

Ily said...

I agree with you there on all points, EoE. Sadly, the ace dating sites don't have enough members to really work yet.