there's no lack of attention online dating

Balance and patience when online dating.

I’m back online dating on Plenty of Fish and as expected, it has not been without hilarity and offense. Contrary to popular opinion that its filled with bottom feeders, I believe there are plenty (see what I did there) of quality men on the site. After all, it’s where I met Fox and Tony and no matter what happened in our relationships, bottom feeders they were not.

I don’t think the site has changed since I’ve been on there last (a year, maybe two?), but I definitely have. And it makes all the difference in how online dating feels.

Way back when, before I got smarter about online dating, I engaged differently with men. I reached out more, responded more, and wasted a whole lot of time. It served its purpose because I learned a lot about how men behave on the site, and I got a lot of attention which helped me get my mojo back. I also had some good sex, went on dates, and met a couple of boyfriends.

But there was also a lot of frustration. Men who would go silent mid-conversation, men who said they wanted more than just sex but would ghost after they got it, men who I really liked but who would never reply to my well thought-out opening lines… the list goes on.

I shudder now when I think about some of the men I engaged with and put up with, and some of the pictures I sent across the internet. Lessons learned.

I currently have a few men in my life whom I consider fuck buddies – I’d say “friends with benefits” except we never do anything other than hang out and have sex. Amazing sex, actually, some of which I have yet to write about.

Jake came back into my life via POF, so I will add another man to my roster. We had stopped communicating in the Fall – he didn’t reply to a text and I figured he’d moved on. Turns out he thought I’d done the same, so we quickly set the record straight and now have two dates set next week. I re-read my posts about him and look forward to the awesome sex and good conversation.

Admittedly, if I wasn’t getting good sex with some regularity, I might be in a different place. I’d likely be on Adult Friend Finder or Tinder trying to find an ongoing casual partner. I met Lewis three years ago. He introduced me to Clark and Todd. I met Jake three years ago as well. These casual relationships took time to develop.

But when I am looking for something more than casual sex, I use my dating rules which I wrote TWO YEARS ago. They still apply and they haven’t let me down.

And here’s the thing: when I use those rules, I engage with far fewer men. Because of how I’ve written my profile, I believe I also get fewer messages from men. Which is completely fine. I don’t want to waste my time anymore. I don’t need to get a barrage of “hey beautiful” messages to make me feel better about myself. Although humorous and good blog fodder, I don’t need to have debates with men who clearly don’t want the same thing as I.

I’ve presented myself online exactly as I am: confident, strong, articulate, no bullshit, looking for a relationship. Terrific that it weeds out those who don’t want me.

I’m also far more at peace with not having a boyfriend. I’m busy with life – my child and my friends and family – and while I can absolutely make space for the right person, I like focusing on the things that bring me pleasure and peace of mind. Not having a boyfriend hasn’t stopped me from anything I want to do: I travel on my own, take friends (both male and female) to the sporting and art events I have subscriptions to. I have hobbies for when I’m alone. I finally got back on my yoga mat and it felt awesome. I have a long trip planned this summer and most of my weekends are already full.

Therefore, unlike before, I’m not on POF constantly. I did spend some time “searching” at first to remind myself there are good men out there. I “favorited” those I liked in case I decide to send them a message. Otherwise, I’m mostly reactive.

I have replied with kind “thanks but no thanks” messages to the men who reached out but I know there is no connection. I told one man I texted with (now using a Burner app so they don’t have my real mobile number) that I wasn’t feeling it and I wasn’t going to pursue a first date.

My being on the site doesn’t take a lot of my actual time or emotional energy. But I know I’m still alive because I feel that flicker of excitement when a guy I find hot and interesting sends me a message. I’ve had two phone calls so far and the conversations were great. I have a coffee date planned with one of them and am hoping the other will get booked shortly.

If they don’t work out, that’s fine too. Although it took me a while to get to this place, I’m happy I’m here.

Image is from the 1960 movie “Never on Sunday”

15 thoughts on “Balance and patience when online dating.

  1. This has been my exact experience with online dating over time. I too have found it takes a lot of patience now. It’s not as chaotic as it used to be now that I’m looking for something real.

  2. Awesome Ann! I like the “tone” of this blog and I’m happy for you. Btw – I met my Hubby on POF. He’s everything I wanted and everything I deserve ❤️ There are GREAT guys out there!

    • Thank you! And yes, it can be pretty tough sometimes. When you’re super busy its easier, because its harder to obsess about things. But it’s not for everyone.

  3. I’m really intrested in this?

    I currently have a few men in my life whom I consider fuck buddies – I’d say “friends with benefits” except we never do anything other than hang out and have sex. Amazing sex, actually, some of which I have yet to write about.

    Unless I’ve missed something I can’t see how yoy can call these guys friends with benefits?

    I would describe a friend with benefit as someone I could

    Have over for a DVD
    Make food for
    Go to a concert
    Go to a gallery
    Go on a shopping trip
    Go to the country or sea side for a day out
    City break or weekend away

    Generally do things with that does not always include ending up having sex.

    Your thoughts Ann?

    • I guess that was my point – I agree with your definition (although a weekend away seems like dating!) – hence why I call them fuck buddies. I actually don’t think a true FWB is that common for people who are older – meaning you have to actually be FRIENDS. However, Lewis and I are more than fuck buddies in that he and I have gone to some events together. Jake and I have gone to sporting events. We talk about work and our kids and I guess “fuck buddy” for me implies something where there isn’t as much of a connection other than say hi and have sex… but perhaps that’s too narrow a definition.
      I personally think we overuse the term “friends” – as in FWB or saying we will remain friends with an ex. I wasn’t friends with them when I was dating them and I won’t be friends afterwards except in rare circumstances where there is a good basis for a friendship but both parties agree there’s no romantic or sexual feelings.

      Does that make sense? Did I answer your question?

  4. Yes you did. My definition of fuck buddy is 95% sex. As the sliding scale changes you go into friends with benefits catagory. Thank you.

What do you think?