Last week I was Gchatting with my friend Jill about the upcoming summer. As ready as I am for the school year to be over, I’m kind of nervous about summer. I’m moving out of my aunt’s house into my new apartment, which I am ecstatic about but I will also be living alone for 2.5 months until my sister comes back from summer break. As I think I’ve mentioned before, my previous relationship consumed a lot of my life in Fargo and I’ve never made a lot of friends in town. Of the few friends I have made, one in spending 2 months in South America and the others all have jobs that require them to work a lot of nights and weekends. I’m starting to get nervous about being really lonely all summer.
About 2 seconds after I sent a long chat message explaining all of this, Jill responded with one word: “OkCupid.” Apparently it’s this free dating website/app that a bunch of her friends use in Chicago and have a really fun time with. She said that one of her friends met a lot of people through the app and didn’t pay for a dinner out for months. Even though Fargo is a lot smaller than Chicago, she thought it was still big enough that I should give it a try.
Time for some honesty. I still kind of think there is a stigma around online dating. I’m not sure if this is a societal feeling or a personal feeling, but part of me felt that “resorting” to online dating as a 25-year-old was kind of embarrassing or sad. Jill told me to stop being stupid, that it’s a good way to meet people in my town (especially when I don’t have a ton of time outside of school and coaching). I started to relent a little. I mean, how else do people meet these days? Pretty much everyone of my friends I met at either school or work. I no longer have the platform of college to force me to make connections with people. The staff at my school is fairly small and I know everyone who works here. The only other way I could come up with to meet new people is out at a bar, but that’s how I met my ex so that option left a bad taste in my mouth. I swallowed my pride and made an account.
You guys, it’s been so fun so far. Sure, there are a fair share of creepers out there who send me gross messages about wanting to hook up, but a few guys have messaged me that I’ve responded to and actually enjoy talking to. Most are like me–not thrilled to be on the site but want to meet new people and don’t have a lot of time to do so. I’ve been a member since last Tuesday, and over the weekend I finally agreed to meet one of the guys in person. I was hesitant, but I realized that it is a dating site and a person may come across totally differently in person than they do via message. So on Thursday I will be meeting who Jill and I (she’s my personal assistant with this journey) have dubbed Microsoft Guy at a new bar in town. He was one of the first guys to message me, and we have since moved to texting and have been talking for a few days. He seems really easy to talk to, so I feel comfortable meeting him in person to see if that holds true face-to-face.
I’m still a little awkward about this whole thing. I told my brother’s girlfriend that I have a blind date this week, and she asked who knows this guy and set it up. I kind of dodged the question, but a little later she asked again so I admitted I met him on this app. She didn’t judge (or didn’t seem to anyway), but I still felt awkward about it. I guess after doing it for awhile I may get more comfortable/less embarrassed about it, but we’ll see. At any rate, at least it should make for an interesting summer! And since when I started this blog I said it would be part-Carrie Bradshaw, I promise I will update and let you know how things are progressing.
In the meantime, anyone else do the whole online dating thing? Are you having any success? Do you feel awkward/embarrassed about it?