About a month ago I said to hell with it. That is, I decided to 1. delete all of my dating apps (Tinder, OK Cupid, Happn, and Bumble) and 2. not look for potential love in my everyday life.
You see, dating had gotten extremely frustrating and disheartening. Actually, dating has always been that way, but it got worst with my move to New York. Everyone knows that dating in New York is hard. But try dating here as a plus size, dark skinned, black woman. If you’re anything like my friends, you probably rolled your eyes or cringed at that line. You may also think, “That has nothing to do with anything, every woman has to do deal with that, no matter how they look.” That’s true, everyone deals with bullshit. But not everyone deals with the same type or the same amount. Anyway, that’s besides the point. I’m not here to rant about how I think it’s utter bullshit when people try to claim that my dating experience as a plus size, black woman is the same as a thin, white woman. Or even a plus size, white woman for that matter. What I will say is that I choose to live in reality and, unfortunately, that reality sucks. Reality is being a highly educated woman and only receiving messages laced with spelling errors from men who just weren’t that intelligent (let me be clear here; while education helps in this area, I’m in no way implying that a college degree is what makes you intelligent). Reality is presenting myself as someone to be respected (as is the case for everyone) and receiving messages that were highly sexual and disrespectful. Reality is receiving messages from entitled men, one of which called me a “negro bed wench for the white man” because I chose not to respond to him. So, again, dating sucked. It sucked so much that I found myself getting angry and, eventually, sad.
Once I realized what was happening, I had to completely shut it down. You see, I am extremely protective of my happiness. I am protective because I can remember a time when that happiness did not exist. I can remember a time when I just wanted to disappear from the world. I can remember a time when I couldn’t see a life beyond my sadness…my loneliness. I don’t ever want to go back to that feeling of hopelessness. So, if securing my happiness means letting go of this thing, that carries potential happiness itself, then so be it.
This is not to say that I plan to be single for the rest of my life. My plan is to give it a year or two. Focus on other things, like building meaningful friendships in this city. If something comes along in the mean time, great! If not, oh well.