Some refer to dating as a learned art. There are hundreds of books, websites and essays that claim to have the answer to it,
And if you need a pocket sized manual, the Department of Counseling and Psychological Services at Florida Institute of Technology has a handy brochure entitled, ‘The Art of Dating, which can be folded into any man or woman’s coat or purse and taken out in a time of need.
Some refer to dating as a necessary part of life, like death and taxes.
At one point or another, you’re going to enter into it and you must be ready with all the essentials; books, condoms, mace.
I wouldn’t quite refer to myself as an artist, but childhood paintings, sculptures and etched portraits hang upon the walls of my parent’s home, a picture of mine was even in the kid’s magazine ‘Highlights,’ yet the time spent sketching the faces, shading the outlines, and molding the clay, has done nothing for my skills in the supposed ‘art. of dating’
Because to me it isn’t an acquired art; instead, it’s torture, it’s a game, and rarely do I come out of it a winner.
In high- school and all throughout college I had a steady boyfriend; hence I avoided it all together. Unfortunately, these boyfriends were all drek (literally feces/ crap) which led me down a spiral of despair and onto the couch of a therapist.
She told me, “The men you choose are like rubber bands pushing you close and then pulling you away. You will be attracted to men similar to him [my current boyfriend] the rest of your life if you do not realize this.”
She then handed me a copy of ‘Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus,’ a prescription for Prozac, and a hearty thumbs up. I never returned to her office, her crimson colored couch, or to the annoying sound her Zen table waterfall made as the water rushed down it. Instead of making me feel comfortable, the consistent running of water made me feel like I had to pee every time I sat down. The good doctor’s similes weren’t my style, and she apparently had shitty taste in prose.
In June of 2009, Forbes magazine ranked Washington D.C. as the number 6 (out of 40) best cities for singles in the United States, yet ever since my plane landed at Reagan International, and I put my stuff away in Arlington, I’ve been single, extremely single. I wouldn’t even say I’ve steadily dated one man.
So, I ask, yet again, why?
Do I have too high of standards?
Do I even know what I’m looking for, and if that’s the case, why am I looking so hard when people keep telling me that when I stop searching, my bashert(predestined) will suddenly appear?
Prior to moving to D.C., not only had I always been single, I’d also never dated or been the girlfriend of a Jewish man. On my long list (yes there is a paper list) of requirements, this was absent, and it didn’t matter, yet now it does, and it’s not just my father, my mother, my sister, or my relatives who it matters to, most importantly it matters to me. My childhood and past have been marked by traditions, customs, and even food that are all Jewish in nature, and as I witness my sister’s Jewish marriage transpire, I realize that I cannot see a future void of this past and present. Judaism is part of me and I want it to be a part of the man I eventually meet and marry. I want the chuppah.
I want the ketubah, the Brit milah, Bar/ Bat Mitzvah of our kids.
I want the Kugel, the shofar, the mezuzah outside our door.
I want the Jew, not the fro, but I want my man in a kippah.
But, maybe it’s just not the time. Maybe I’m just not ready, or too jaded to see him if he’s standing there. Maybe, I should focus on me, and he’ll appear as my mother says.
Whatever the case, I’ve taken those maybes and decided to log off.
December 6 is my last day on Jdate.
It’s been fun, but too many ‘whys’ have led me to say,‘I just don’t think it’s my time to date.’