The world of online dating is a world of its own.
When it first started, it perhaps had different motives than what they have evolved to now. Well, maybe the motives are still the same, but the way online dating has changed has taken it from something that had the potential to lead to a relationship to just the fast-food way to find a hookup.
What maybe started as indecisive or taboo hookups has shifted to Bumble biographies that say “strictly in it for the hookup.” We’ve changed from even trying to hide the fact that we’re only in it for the sex or the sexting.
It is liberating, confusing, and concerning that we’re not even hiding the fact that that’s all we’re looking for. It’s not that there’s anything wrong with knowing what you want, are in the mood for, and going after it. However, my best friend and I have come to learn and see things that should have never occurred within our situations.
Throughout the last year, we swiped our little hearts out. We genuinely viewed online dating with the possibility that it could turn into something, or at least give us a chance to go out and do something fun. It began as a non-committal way to talk and receive validation. We knew and expected to be disappointed in some regards. Within the process of swiping and small talk, we would routinely or spontaneously give our snapchat to a guy that we found interesting. This was a good way to determine a few things about who we were talking to. It would be extremely telling of them to see if they would be confident enough to send some selfies and if those selfies seemed to align with the photos in their profile. It was also a much easier and more casual way to communicate rather than opening the dating app every single time. So, Snapchat for the win! Right?
What seemed to start as innocent, genuine conversations lead to me opening Snapchats at work, thinking they were a casual selfie, and instead seeing a video of my online dating friend butt naked at noon, showing me everything he possibly can. I’m sorry Jake, but I’m at work, and although that may turn me on, you sent it completely unsolicited with no context, words, or mutual desire.
It’s not that there is a problem with being or feeling sexy.
That isn’t it at all.
In fact, everyone should be encouraged to find their sexuality, embrace it, and run with it. I highly encourage every single person to learn what turns them on and off.
However, when it comes to receiving an unsolicited sext in the middle of the day, when I’m surrounded by my coworkers at lunch? I’m sorry, but it’s a no from me. Yet it gets even worse. These pictures are then followed by the audacity to ask for pictures of videos in return — completely unsolicited and irrelevant.
I wish that was the end of these digital exchanges.
After the run-around of sexy pictures ends and my best friend and I voice multiple times that we aren’t interested in that kind of relationship, we become the villains.
Pretty soon we’re receiving messages such as “you’re boring” or “you should have known what you signed up for” or, quite possibly my personal favorite, “you’re just insecure.”
There might not be anything less attractive than another individual trying to tell you that they know you better than you know yourself, let alone a stranger from the internet trying to tell you the reasons you’re uncomfortable or not in the mood for sexting.
This is ultimately the reason that leads me to block someone.
It isn’t the pictures. It isn’t the attempt to be sexual. It’s the attempt to not respect my boundaries.
I don’t care how hot you are, if I tell you a boundary that I need to honor for myself and you don’t respect it, then you are clearly not meant to be messaging me.
Every person deserves the opportunity to honor their own boundaries.
Every person deserves the respect of someone listening to them when they say “I’m not interested in this right now.”
Everyone deserves to feel sexy within their own world, within their own comfortability, within what they want.
So no, I’m not blocking you because it’s 12 p.m. on a Tuesday and you’re sending me your orgasm. I’m blocking you because you can’t take no for an answer.
I’m blocking you because you don’t have the decency to listen to me when I tell you what my boundaries are. I could tell you a million times what my lines are and you would still cross them over and over again.
This has been the journey that my best friend and I have taken through online dating. It’s a repeated, dreaded cycle that we should learn from, and hopefully we have now.
So go out there and live your best online dating life, but don’t forget that not everyone wants what you want.