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The Dating Dare: Self-Awareness

I am glad I did this little eHarmony experiment, because at the very least, I learned things about myself; what I am attracted to, afraid of, and look for in my interactions with men. Here are some of them.

I am a bit more racist than I thought. It is easier to be a racist online than in person, because all you see is a one-word label. I kind of wish eHarmony had a function where I could turn off viewing ethnicities, so that I could protect myself from myself.

I would not say I am a picky person about looks (my crushes have ranged in every way possible when it comes to appearance), but excessive extra weight is a deal-breaker for me. I couldn't see anyone's photos without paying, and my instinctive fear every time I got a message from someone I found interesting was, What if they're FAT!? In my defense, I think this was a specific manifestation of the fear, What if I find them physically unattractive?? I have liked pudgy/overweight/burly/sturdy men in the past. And am sure I will in the future. But I do think excessive extra weight indicates a lack of self-care and awareness regarding one's health that is particularly unattractive... I surprised myself in this matter, and by the end of the month, my “Can't Stand” list included two physical deal-breakers: poor hygiene and extreme overweight.

Know what else matters to me? Intellectuality. I want someone who is interested in world affairs, cultural issues and the arts. I don't expect an expert in all matters, but recognize that I need someone who observes and reflects on the world we live in. Hence “Fiction is Fictitious” Man didn't make the cut. Nor did the men whose sole hobby was the gym. But someone who is an avid sports fan with a shared interest in dissecting why we humans act the way we do? Appealing.

Chemistry. Attraction can exist over the internet. And it can be instantaneous. If it is not, I tend to be done. That said, instant chemistry does not always turn into sustained chemistry. But for me, non-chemistry has never grown into chemistry. And I have tried.

Related: I really can't wrap my head around dating someone who is singificantly smaller than me. Even more than ethnicity or reading habits, the number #1 reason I archived matches was height. I just expect to feel big and clunky and oversized if I am dating a man who is 5' 6”.

Awhile ago, a friend said to me, “Women are more visual than they admit, and men are more emotional than they realize.” I think he is on to something.

And speaking of generalities about life and relationships... Next up: Things That Are True On- & Off-line.


Katie V. said…
I appreciate your honesty Beth. The height thing will always be a deal-breaker for that same reason - I don't want to feel enormous.
Aimee said…
It's not really a bad thing, but these posts make me never want to jump into the dating game. Ever. Again. Why does this stuff have to be so awkward and ridiculous?! Maybe it doesn't have to be? Ugh. I admire your eharmony bravery, though. And these posts make me giggle :)

I've found the weight factor somehwhat tough, because I know it's unkind to be shallow and I know Jesus focuses on the heart. With that being said, if extra pounds mean that someone can't keep up with me out on an intense hike/bike/run, it's likely going to be a deal-breaker. Also, the intellectual thing is...massively difficult. Not as difficult as the "spiritual leadership" thing, which I've run up against more than once, and with more trouble. But still. Unless "Fiction is Fictitious" Man was ACTUALLY trying to be clever and facetious (?!) thanks but no thanks.

Love you. Loved your Hope poem too. And I'd love to share some Advent thoughts in the near-future...!
Beth said…
katie v - :)

aimee - you have anticipated some of tomorrow morning's thoughts in the series' final entry!
Anonymous said…
This sounds like it was a fruitful exercise. Everyone should do this, if not for the hilarious moments ("Fiction is Fictitious"...yes, yes it is).
Jesskah said…
Chimp -
Can you guess what my one question about this post is?
Beth said…
Jonathan - I agree. I was skeptical, but if you go into it wanting to learn and willing to be can be just fine!

Jesskah - No. Unless it is the question you asked me earlier?
Jesskah said…
Mmmm I don't know what my earlier question would have been (since I do ask you many...). But I want to know what definition of "racist" you're working with. I suppose we have talked about this before.
Beth said…
jesskah - i'd been thinking of your "scamming" question. but this one, of course.

my definition for that i assume certain (negative) traits of a person based on their ethnicity and roughly ten sentences that they've written. ie. "ohhhhh, you're asian and in finance? too driven for me."
Jesskah said…
mmm. I accept your apology.

I want to mount an argument against that usage but I don't want to discount what you said - cos it does make sense. I will think on this.

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