I hadn’t been single in nearly a decade; I didn’t even have Facebook, let alone a stockpile of profile pictures or an irrepressible texting game.
But I was also a writer who worked from home, one whose closest friends were married with children.
When I was in my early 30s, my husband of four years, partner of nine, left abruptly in the middle of the night.
In the surreal weeks and months that followed, I grew increasingly apprehensive about the idea of online dating.
In a matter of minutes I would map out a new life for myself, one that fit the mold of whatever man I was messaging. But I soon noticed that the flip side to the disappointment of each mismatch or aborted romance was a mounting sense of strength and self-sufficiency, a hardening of character, a greater understanding of the woman I am when I’m intact.
There’s little like ghosting to delineate where we as human beings begin and end; and little like ghosting, too, to lay bare our own infinite reserves.
I could introduce you to men who believe in God and men who live in their cars; men who have slept with their sisters and others who have followed the Dead.
Now, over three years and seven dating apps later, I’ve gone out with 86 men and counting; I know because I keep a list that reads like free verse (“David the orphan … Yes, online dating can be deeply demoralizing, a parade of indignities that throws into relief not just our self-absorption and banality, but our nihilism too.