My tried-and-true experience has shown that online-dating doesn’t exist without a great deal of pain, torment, and heartbreak. You cannot progress down the path of success until you’ve endured some of the games associated with online dating. For me, every Tinder experience I’ve had, has ended with the guy either fading-away or ghosting completely. Unless the courtship was ended by me, in that case I pull the its-not-you-its-me card (….what can I say, I’m old-fashioned).
A quick terminology break down:
Fading-away is when someone slowly disappears. They take longer to respond back to your messages. Time in between dates is longer. All of a sudden they are very busy at work. They become a neglectful partner and a shitty person in hopes that you do the dirty work and dump them.
Ghosting happens when the person just disappears: no call, no text, no goodbye, no explanation. It leaves you wondering if they lost their phone or were kidnapped or event killed.
I’ve been dating *J* (from the gym) for about a month now. We have been on more than 10 dates; baseball games, mini golf, bowling, hiking, movies, food, drinks, etc. We got into a habit of hanging out nearly every other day, texting throughout the day and even *gasp* talking on the phone. We made weekend plans around each other schedules, and we spent lunch breaks together during the work week. I have been a single girl for nearly three years now, but if I didn’t know otherwise I would say we were very much going down the path to exclusivity.
*J* and I were very much together, until we weren’t.
One day last week I texted around 11:30a to see if he had lunch plans; he replied back… at 6:30p. When he did finally reply, he apologized and said he had a busy day. I knew this response all too well. The following day we met up for lunch, during conversation he mentioned that it had been slow at work and he was trying to find ways to pass the time. When I heard that I instantly felt sick to my stomach.
So he did ignore me.
I said nothing and we continued to talk as normal. We made plans to meet up on Sunday, he said he wanted to take me into the city. My excitement over our weekend plans overshadowed my feelings from the day before. After we finished lunch, hugged/kissed goodbye, and both went back to work. I texted him a few hours later to see how his day was going; there was no reply. I waited.
Three days have passed and my phone has been silent. I am completely dumbfounded and blindsided. I never said he was the love of my life, or that we were even that compatible for that matter, but we did have a lot of fun together. I met his work friends, his roommates, and we had mutual friends between us. I didn’t expect this from him mostly because of how good things have seemed to be going.
I feel exhausted having put so much emotional energy into someone to have it just end without any kind of forewarning. I feel angry that I wasn’t worth any explanation; but this is online dating, and this is the experience I have come to know. Over the past few years, I’ve stepped aside from online dating plenty of times; I’ve gone several months at a time without looking at a dating app, let alone taking to someone. Unfortunately being single is the battle of the lesser of the two evils. I keep coming back to these apps because taking an active role, even with constant disappointment, seems better than sitting around doing nothing at all.
At 33 years old, I have finally passed the point in my life where I need answers from someone. I deserve some sort of explanation but I’m not going to ask for it. I’m not going to wait for it either. For now I’m just going to move on and try to forget.