Losing the Dating Game: Revisited

Nearly three years ago I wrote a blog post about how I was losing the dating game. Update: Not much has changed.

I’m here, a few years older, and not much wiser. With another breakup under my belt, another existential “Who am I?” crisis at hand, sometimes I wonder when history will stop repeating itself.

I’m older, just as cynical (or, as I’d like to describe it, “realistic”), and still as lost as I was the last time I was losing this game. Back then I proudly took myself out of the game, ready to sit on the bench as long as I felt necessary.

This time around, I’m on the fence. I know I’m injured, I’m not a valuable team player, and the coach should really pull me from the starting lineup. But there’s still a part of me that wants to play.

So what does one do when she’s on the fence about sitting on the bench during the dating game?

She goes on Tinder, of course.

My main goal in entering the world of Tinder was to troll people. Mature, I know. Believe me, in the beginning it was hysterical.

Am I the only one who thinks “Please be fun” is a slightly obnoxious opening line?
Clearly GIFs are the name of the game for me on Tinder. The more annoying, the better for trolling.
I’m basically the definition of “mature.”
Guess that pickup line was a fail based solely on my GIF reaction.

But after a while, they started legitimately asking me on dates.

To which my reaction was:

disgusted marilyn monroe GIF
Via: giphy.com

I never intended to date anyone who had the misfortune of stumbling across me and my barrage of unnecessary GIFs on Tinder. I honestly didn’t even realize that I’d encounter that situation. I thought none of them would take my immaturity seriously and that my tactic of trolling would be too obvious.

When I started receiving invitations for drinks (that always seems to be the popular go-to Tinder date), I realized the joke was over. I’d have to decide if I really wanted to date (not just people I met on Tinder but in real life as well) or run for the hills.

I chose to run for the hills.

go go go running GIF
Via: giphy.com

I realized that I wasn’t throwing myself into the dating game for the right reasons. I was hoping to compete against my last relationship, my former teammate and current opponent. I wanted to win, but I learned that I’m losing. My opponent, from what social media has shown me, is winning the game. His new girlfriend is treated to trips to D.C., NBA games, theatre shows, brewery tours, while I am finding the least awkward way to reject strangers on Tinder.

Oh how the mighty have fallen.

While losing the dating game sucks, I’ve learned that I also shouldn’t throw myself into the game for the wrong reasons. If I have to sit on the bench while watching my opponent win, so be it. I have to heal from my injuries so that I can be a valuable player once again. Who knows how long that will take. Maybe my opponent will be 50 points ahead. But I should be playing for the right reasons, and winning for myself.

Me when I hopefully someday make a comeback to the dating game. Via: giphy.com

So for now, three years after I was losing the dating game, I’m still losing. Even though I want to play, I’m going to take myself out of the game and sit on the bench. Maybe that’s what I need. I’ll be back.

Via: giphy.com
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4 Comments

  1. This is the most emotionally mature shit I’ve ever heard. Why doesn’t my brain function this way? I’m 36 and maybe, a little bit, am slowly starting to figure this out. It’s okay to take yourself out and sit on the sidelines.

  2. You’ll always be a winner in my book, Becky. Never give up. You’re just too damn amazing to be single forever, but if you choose to be single, that’s cool, too. Or you could just move to Maine… 🙂

  3. In my (admittedly very limited) experience, actively looking for a partner ends up in frustration, but when give up and stop looking – that’s when love tends to turn up. I’m betting on there being someone out there who’s perfect for you. Happy New Year!

  4. Sitting on the bench is for team sports; dating is not a team sport. Dating is more like boxing: one on one. Boxers aren’t losing when they train. They are just preparing themselves for the next match they choose to accept.

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