Ten years ago, when I found myself having to climb through the window of a Lotus Elise, Starsky & Hutch style, because “the doors didn’t work,” nothing to do with the short skirt I was wearing, I began to have a few reservations about internet dating.
My best friend has been single for several years now and finds herself in an all too familiar predicament. Divorced, a single mother, and pretty damned scared of even considering going back on the dating scene again. I remember that feeling all too well.
I became a serial internet dater a decade ago, in a time when it was seen as sordid, for losers, and something that should be kept very, very secret.
At the time, I worked full time in London, was lucky if I got home in time to put my son to bed and internet dating seemed the only option left open to me if I ever wanted to date again. The type of person always up for a challenge, I thought ‘why not?’ and signed up.
The dates were varied, to say the least. Climbing through car windows aside, I also ate in expensive restaurants, had plenty of wine in plenty of pubs and once met a man whose teeth were so rotten I thought they would all fall out if he sneezed (which thankfully he didn’t). I was always instructed by Mum to be safe (in every conceivable way) and nothing really scary ever happened (although from then on I ensured I brushed my teeth twice a day at the very least).
It was fun, weird, exciting and the beginning of the rebuilding of my confidence. I’m in no way embarrassed by it, I wasn’t back then, but I’m glad I don’t have to do it again.
From what I can gather, internet dating has moved on a lot since then, although the principles, and occasional weirdo, remain the same it seems. There are sites for booty calls, for people who like uniforms and even one for people who will only date millionaires.
I wonder which site she’ll go for? Maybe there’s one that rolls all three into one!?