Only one of my closest friends is out in the dating world, so we’re constantly swapping stories. We couldn’t be more opposite in terms of how we date, but we’re able to communicate without annoying each other because we’re both on the same page in terms of thinking that any man who doesn’t treasure the other is completely nuts.
It’s funny though. She won’t go out with a guy unless she’s been talking on the phone, whereas I distinctly remember going into a panic when I guy I REALLY liked called me months into dating to coordinate. She only dates guys her age or a little older; the only guys who are interested in me are a good 10 years younger, so that’s who I date. She doesn’t read the questions; that’s my next stop after pictures when someone messages me.
Here’s the thing: It saves me SO MUCH time. I go right to “unacceptable answers” and look for dealbreakers. I have four; #1 and #4 are 100% non-negotiable.
(1) A “no” to a question about dating someone with kids. Easy. I get a lot of messages from guys who’ve answered this. I’m like…um, did you actually read my profile?
(2) Politically conservative. I mean, sometimes I think it would be funny to go out with a republican just for shits, but I don’t think I have the strongest boundaries, and the last thing I need is to fall in love with someone and get swayed that way just because he’s hot.
(3) Atheist is usually a deal-breaker (agnostic is okay, but if they say “yes” to “Do you openly mock religion,” I’m going to assume they’re an asshole). I don’t really care what religion someone is, and I’m pretty much the worst Christian in the world, but someone who is atheist and means business about it / is self-righteous about it isn’t going to respect me. I don’t grill guys about their religious beliefs. If a guy is atheist, but doesn’t feel strongly enough about it to answer the question on it, then it’s probably fine.
(4) A “yes” to “Would you strongly prefer to go out with someone of your own skin color / racial background?”
I’m white, and I’ll go out with white guys, (or guys of any race…although I do admit that I seem to be most attracted to desi men). But I’m also a little distrustful of people where I live. Everyone likes to think of themselves as very cosmopolitan and worldly because of the proximity to NYC, but where I live is extremely provincial and segregated. There is a lot of “I’m not racist, but…” and a lot of whispering from white person to white person about people who aren’t white (or people who are white and are Jewish). So when I’m evaluating a white guy from here as a potential date, I’m already a little suspicious, and a “yes” to that question basically confirms it to me.
I don’t know if it’s racist or if it’s possible for preference to exist in a vacuum, but I think it’s important to have dealbreakers, and this seems like a good way to weed out some guys.
Although I’ve gotten some guys lately that don’t have any of those deal breakers, and I still don’t bother responding. Or I’ll go out with someone cute and have a great time, but still be pretty half-assed in responding to his contact afterwards. And yet I act sad about being single this Valentine’s Day…as if I ever even cared about Valentine’s Day, even when I was in love. Maybe I just need something to complain about.