Yes, et tu Brute. I have tried it. Twice. Do I have to say it? Okay. I hated it. Hated it! It’s like window shopping for a partner. Will this one go with my new jacket? Oh no, I can’t wear heels with this one. Married? Really. Well at least he was honest about it.
The first site I tried was free for everyone. Obviously the quality was accordingly. I had logged into my new account – no images or nothing yet – when the first message came. “Hi, you’re hot.” How did he know? Was he a psychic?
My second attempt felt safer. A good friend had assured me it was fine, and she had met her new boyfriend there. They were absolutely adorable together. She could also tell me about two other girlfriends having found partners through this site. I felt kinda merry as I created my account.
Heads Are Rolling
I had been a bit worried though. There was a huge image of a half-naked woman on the front page. Had I perhaps got the address wrong? I live in Berlin after all, and I didn’t want to sign onto some exotic and decadent swinger’s page – or worse.
As I chose photos of myself and filled out the forms I was in a calm and adventurous mood. Maybe it would be fun? I checked out a few of the guys and my mood started to drop. Some of the profile images showed naked chests or pumped up muscles under tight shirts. No heads though. Fabulous, if you are looking for movers…
No Ordinary Dating Site
A few days later I checked my messages and was happy to see a few. One was written by a 29 (!) year old guy, I had got a simple “how are you?” from someone, and a longer message from a married man. I gently turned momma’s boy down, said “fine” to man no 2 and told man no 3 I wasn’t interested. That’s when it happened.
“If you’re not looking for sex, what are you doing here? This is a sex dating site.”
He was very polite about it (German), but I wanted to strangle my friend for not telling me. I felt utterly embarrassed, but only for a moment. I remembered the boxes I had checked at the beginning. I had chosen “Friendship” and “Relationship”. Nothing in between. It was clear to me that this man couldn’t read, or wouldn’t be bothered with tiny details.
I am fully aware that many people find their partners – even spouses – through dating sites. But I’m not cut out for it. It’s too weird. A friend, an woman in her 70’s, is about to give up dating sites and dates. She tells me:
“Men my age tend to treat a first date like a job interview. They tell me how wonderful they are, what a great amount of talents they have, how much money they’ve earned, and how successful they are. It’s almost like they are doing a sale’s pitch. They talk and talk. Not a single question.”
Her story makes me sad. Aren’t men curious about other people? Well, that’s another story. I’ve given up about dating sites. For good.