Netflix and Chill, or Nah?
Between redundant small talk, pervy catfish, uncomfortable first date side-hugs, and way too many ways to be asked if I’m down to fuck, the dating game can often be a losing one. And while I may often dramatically lament to my friends that today is the day I’m giving up love and becoming a crazy single dog lady who never leaves the house and only eats Chinese take-out, it’s still a game I’m in.
Three years ago, I had just gotten divorced. Marrying your high school sweetheart works for some. For others, nah. I fit into the NOPE category, so I was newly single for the first time in my adult life in a strange city. I was fucking terrified.
I had never dated, and the relationship I was in hadn’t been the healthiest emotionally, so I was a mess. Filled with self hatred, self loathing, and a heavy side of body dysmorphia, I assumed no one would ever want to date me. When you look into the mirror everyday and feel like you’re hideous, it’s difficult to comprehend that anyone could ever look at you and think anything differently.
However, after some poking and prodding from my family and close friends, I did start dating. It had some ups, some downs, some flat out WHAT THE FUCK moments- but those are for another post, another day. I had a hard time dating and comprehending that anyone could be interested in me romantically, but it was one comment from a particularly odd dating experience that stuck with me.
After asking this guy flat out why he was attracted to me, he asked what right I had to question who or what he was attracted to. Just like I may prefer pineapple on my pizza while my best friend hates it, we like what we like. And there is no shame in personal preference.
And it just clicked.
Who I am attracted to is not dictated by my weight, my height, my hair, my skin, my eyes. It’s just a preference. So why wouldn’t other people be the same way? And if that really is the case, then there’s no use trying to fit into the mold of what I think is attractive to certain people. I just need to find people who prefer me!
I still think dating sucks. But that’s just how dating works. Somewhere out there is somebody who likes pineapple on their pizza just the way I do. But until then, I’m not gonna worry about someone else’s preferences. Because I’ve learned to prefer myself.
And hey, worst case, my dog is a great cuddler and that Chinese place does deliver for free.