Dating. The word alone makes me want to put a straw into a bottle of wine and suck until it’s dry.
I’ve been widowed for eight years and have been dipping my foot back into the dating pool. Dating over forty is a lot different than it was twenty years ago. I don’t know the rules. But I honestly don’t remember there being any rules back in the day. Not really. You met someone, you hung out, had a good time...not so complicated. Now I’m finding men who have “tests” and “rules” and blurt out things on the first date like “do you want to have more kids?”
Whoa. Whatever happened to having a good time? Has fun become a foreign concept? And what’s with these “tests” I keep hearing of? Is there some rule book I’m missing? Geez.
You’d think being a romance writer would give me an edge, but the fact is men are terrified of me. They seem to think I have some elevated expectations--which only makes me wonder what they’re lacking, if you know what I mean. C’mon, people! Seriously? The fact that I talk/write openly about sex scares you? Well, then to quote Sheryl Crow, “you’re not strong enough to be my man.”
I’ve been on my own for a little over eight years now. I’ve raised two kids through a lot of trauma and grief, dealt with my own sorrow, kept the roof over our heads and am admittedly very independent. I’m a published romantic suspense novelist who writes about fierce woman overcoming great odds--probably because I relate to my heroines. I’m sassy. I can handle a drill and a chainsaw as well as put on pair of heels and enjoy a nice night at the theater. I honestly don’t feel I need to jump through any hoops to to “prove myself” to any man.
Therein lies the problem. I don’t audition on a date. What you see is what you get. I tell it like it is because I don’t feel I have anything to hide. I’m sexy and I know it (quoting a song from LMAO). I’ll hang out with you as long as we’re getting along and attracted to one another--and as long as my intuition doesn’t scream “serial killer”.
I don’t have a list of tests and, honestly, am insulted that people do. Is this the problem with today’s dating world? Do people go into the beginning of a relationship as if it’s a business transaction? You do this and I’ll do that, what can you give me, what benefit is this to my life? Is that how it’s done? Well, I’m refusing to play by those rules. I’ve never been good with rules anyway and I left tests behind when I graduated college twenty years ago.
Relationships are human connections that have nothing to do with business unless you’re a prostitute or a mail order bride. C’mon! Love is about feelings, attraction, fun and passion. I’m going to stumble around doing things my way because that’s how I roll--right or wrong. As long as my date is making me laugh and makes me feel appreciated, I’m good with that. Call me old fashioned, if you will...but I’m all about finding a heart connection rather than a business partner.