A Stranger in Need (Is Still a Stranger)

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July 14, in a moment of loneliness and desperation, I signed up with a dating site.

Today I closed out my account.

I only used the app when I was bored because each message I received supplied me with A) attention, or B) a chance to flex my superiority complex. I wasn’t making “connections” or “getting to know” anyone. In fact, as soon as the topic of my number or actually meeting would come up, I’d lose interest and stop responding.

The final straw was this morning when I received yet another message from a guy who I really had no interest in, but had responded to two or three times to mitigate my boredom. Since the day I signed up he sent me message after message asking me to hang out with him, to respond to him, talk with him. Eventually the messages turned to calling me a jerk. Of course, I don’t know him and he doesn’t know me, so his opinion has about as much weight as all the parkas in India. Still, I thought it a waste to not at least try to help him see the social err in his ways (and I don’t pretend to be a social genius, but observing and trying to understand personal boundaries has been a priority for me recently). So I sent him this final message:

I don’t owe you a response or explanation, but I’m going to give you this anyway because I believe we should all grow. So consider me your rain and sunshine.

I’m not as avid a user of this app as you clearly are, preferring to casually browse and respond when I have a care to do so. Your messages are neither welcome, nor appropriate, as they anticipate a higher level of familiarity than that which we had established.

You have enthusiasm, which is admirable, but it might do you well to reflect in boundaries in the relationships in your life.

Best

OK, so it may look like that was my trying to use him for Use B, but I promise it was meant from a real place. A benevolent place. I wanted this experience to maybe make an impact on his future encounters. Perhaps it will save him some grief, I thought.

His response was unreceptive. I’m still a jerk in his opinion, but now I’m also one who’s “rude.” I don’t know, maybe it will help him. Maybe the very idea of advising someone on social issues is essentially condescending. Only time will tell and only God will know. No more online dating for me.

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