Trying Tinder: Ghosts and Pickup Lines

Before I start diving into all of the deeply frustrating negativity that has come up and will almost certainly continue appearing over my time on tinder, I want to share something that surprised me. The time line of it is weird because it starts with my first date and ends somewhere between my fifth and sixth.

My first tinder date happens four days after my breakup. I don’t tell any of my friends about it. I have been tinkering around in between crying fits, specifically seeing which greetings will generate the most responses. A standard “hello” or “hi” did nothing. “What are you up to tonight?” and “how has your week been”, bring on maybe two sentence exchanges. For some reason “you have great hair!” always punctuated with a lower case “y” and ending with an exclamation point is getting a ton of results. The success I’ve had with this has been a bit mind boggling. It’s not fool proof but more often than not, it leads to something.

One of the people I arbitrarily tell has great hair gets back to me almost immediately. We message back and forth to the point that I feel like I have to move it to real life or the conversation is just kind of going to die. I have mixed feelings. I have made a vague promise to myself to grieve the relationship however I want to and this seemed congruent to that. I am not quite there yet, emotionally, and I don’t feel anything close to myself yet but this seems like a good first step. There was no say in how the break up went down for me, but even if I’m not entirely ready, I want to have some sort of control over how I move forward. I ask if she wants to meet up for a drink; she says yes, and we have a date the next day.

The date isn’t really different than any of the OKCupid dates I’ve been on in the. We meet up, get a drink and talk for about an hour and a half. I don’t remember that much of it, certainly not specifics. She’s nice, slightly taller than me, and very pretty. I think she’s from the south and had sort of an accent and she definitely went to high school with a baseball player I’ve heard of. After the date, she gives me a hug and says she’s interested in doing something again. I don’t respond for over a week, already waist deep in other tinder ventures. She was nice though and on the way home from a different one that hadn’t been as pleasant, I check in to see if she still wants to do something again. I don’t hear from her so I assume she is ghosting me. Ghosting is when you just kind of stop talking to someone without any explanation. Unless the person is actively dangerous or horrible, it’s a dick move.

She gets back to me two days later.

Hi Eddie. I really enjoyed our date and had fun getting to know you. But, I’ve recently gotten out of a very longterm relationship so I’m trying to just meet people and get my sea legs. I just don’t think this is a good time for me. Maybe our paths will cross in the future.

The first time I ever got ghosted was after a second date. We’d met on OKCupid. I’d spent the night and the girl had a seizure the morning after during breakfast. Not knowing what to do, I helped her into bed and waited around four hours reading “Invisible Monsters” by Chuck Palahniuk while she napped. I never heard from her again but I did get to keep the book so I feel like I won that exchange. Like everyone else that’s ever used online dating, I’ve accepted that this is just the way it goes sometimes. Strangers owe you nothing; not a response, not a sentence.

I write back.

That’s completely reasonable. I’m in a similar boat so it’s actually pretty comforting to know that people are using tinder for the same sort of thing. Best of luck and thanks for being honest.

She sends one more message.

Thanks for being so understanding. Best of luck to you, Eddie.

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