|Age:||I am 38|
It is surprising that anything surprises me when it comes to dating and relationships.
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I find it surprising that I can still be surprised. Yet with technology making our world so incredibly new I can. Beware it. My ex and I broke up a few months ago, and since then I have been dipping back in the dating pool, mostly in Buenos Aires. We start messaging, and then, the other person asks for my Whatsapp to communicate.
This story starts with a man I met a man on Tinder. If you are an intuitive person, you can tell a lot from a face. We started messaging and it was delightful. He asked beautiful questions. The kinds of questions that I dream of men asking, because really, I think all we want in a relationship is to be known. To be seen.
To be cared about, yes, loved. He would send questions late into the night, and each question brought an exciting ding. So this was fun, it almost felt like we were falling in love like that famous promise that you can accelerate intimacy by asking and answering the right questions, and then, you will fall in love.
But that idea presupposes eye contact. After a couple weeks, I realized I was the only one trying to make the virtual actual. Dates, we would call them. In-person meetings. Getting to know each other in the flesh?
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Although we did meet three times and had a great time on each occasion, I was the only one initiating the dates. And it became increasingly impossible to meet in person. It was very strange. Just not that into me? I never could tell.
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Honestly the whole thing is a mystery to me still. I met a new friend from Singapore for dinner and shared my bewilderment. She confessed something similar had happened to her. She met a man, an American who often traveled for work, and she saw him three times in the course of a year. For a whole year, they sent messages every day. She felt they were in a relationship.
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A friend intervened after a year and she woke up to realize, This is not a relationship. My now ex-boyfriend a real person who likes real meeetings! I need to find another man like him!
Ansari, like me, likes to observe and analyze how technology is changing our dating and romance patterns. Ansari teamed with my friend Eric Klinenberg, the NYU sociologist who wrote Going Solo and interviewed me about Quirkyalone: A Manifesto for Uncompromising Romantics for that book to write a well-researched book on the agonies and ecstasies of dating in the age of technology.
My eyes were glued to the when I read their chapter on dating in Buenos Aires. As part of their study of dating in Buenos Aires they found that men were often carrying on several text conversations with women, and women were doing the same. Everyone was hedging their bets, including people in relationships, flirting via Whatsapp to keep their options open.
The portrait the book paints is one of low-commitment game-playing enabled by texting.
For the most part it seemed chillingly and accurately described. The situation is extreme, but the situation is extreme in many places. No text buddies please. We are all spinning tops now, spinning withsocial media, phone notifications, and the world is spinning so fast, where does it all lead?
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When the world keeps spinning faster, what happens to our basic human needs for authentic connection, help, and love? Will a percentage of the population just go for these false-intimacy, buzzing-dinging relationships that provide a dopamine hit of excitement but never a hug? Are these just the virtual frogs we have to kiss on the diligent search for something real, substantial, live and in the flesh, built on time and love? That give perfect textual satisfaction…and nothing else?
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In my recent story, I found it so bizarre that this man was texting me all the time with questions, and yet, he lived about a mile away. This was not a long-distance relationship that required texting. For about a month I found his messages thrilling, but also unhealthy to have my body get so revved up by the addictive dings, with no bodily contact to soothe, ground, connect us. I learned something very valuable years ago: You want the people who want you.
I need more from a man than Whatsapp. A lot more. A female Argentine friend and I reached the conclusion that we need to carefully screen. Like the guy in his Tinder profile said, no text buddies please.
While I am part of a few online communities that are important to me, and those relationships are meaningful, when it comes to my closest friendships, family relationships, and my partner, I know those relationships all take time and energy to cultivate in person, on the phone, or via Skype somehow seeing the face does make a big difference.
We who want authentic connection should be careful to not waste the time and energy on an illusion built through addictive dings on our phones. Do you want to stop getting sucked into pointless, time-wasting Whatsapp and text pseudo-relationships and move on with your life so you can meet someone who wants a real relationship? You are not alone. Tell me a little about you, what brings you here, and what you want to focus on, and we can assess whether we are a good fit.
Given how big this problem of the text-only relationship has become, I may create a course around learning how to get off text and into a real relationship that gives you real-life tips, skill-building, and scripts to move a conversation and meeting—so you filter for the people who can give you what you really want. Want to learn the skills you need to stop getting sucked into pointless, time-wasting Whatsapp and text pseudo-relationships and move on with your life so you can meet someone who wants a real relationship?
Like what you read? Oh my gosh, Sasha…Love this. So crazy! It reminds me of when I was in a long distance love affair about 5 years ago with some guy I think I met on match. He lived in Alabama or something, but we had great s back and forth for months.
When I suggested meeting up somewhere, I never heard from him again. Dont feel bad.
I have caught other people searching s etc online also pretending to be a totally different person. Chances are you were talking to a very old man, married, maybe even a year-old lesbian lesbian with genius writing skills.
In dating, beware the whatsapp relationship (or excessive texting!)
Who knows. Ohhh and then i actually drove a huge distance to meet a man who demanded exclusivity after a 2 week telephone romance. The guy was a total creep. Possibly a psycho.
I am positive he was living off another woman as he left me in the middle of the date to talk for 30 minutes. One awful date and some scary weird conversation that never happened over the phone Because his crazy was somehow Obvious in person but not at all over the phone and the spell was broken.
I wonder how many of us who have been on the search for love online or on our phones have had that experience?!
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In real life, if a guy gets rejected, we usually just slink away, and take it more personally. Hey Sasha. You may be right with regards the guys not wanting to be rejected, but I think it goes deeper than that. I think the main problem is commitment. In real life, if I fight with my wife I still have to sleep in the same bed … and rightly so. You have made a commitment to each other, for better or worse, richer or poorer etc.
It really keep options open. But not really because the woman ur texting are doing the same thing. Theres really no end game. Its all about the chase. But eventually we met and it was fine. But I think they want the pictures and the fun of texting back and forth.
However still confusing. This is true, have been in a casual relationship with a younger man for two or three months now. We were colleagues years ago and I contacted him about job opportunities. Any way, Whatsapp away. Every day, Good morning, good night, blah blah. So boring. Sod him.