The (not) dating introvert, #4: OK Cupid & sex before the first date

1 Jun

Any dating site that wants to be taken serious as such needs to incorporate some sort of algorithm to estimate whether or not the personalities of two people would make a good fit. After all, you don’t want to scroll through pages of profile text before realising that the two of you share less chemistry than you did with your assigned lab partner in grade seven. [I’m still waiting for that crystallised Chloride, Derrick!]

Our new friend, OK Cupid, provides an extensive reservoir of multiple-choice questions that you can answer. Based on your own answer, and considering how high you rank the importance of that question for your dating quest, the website will then rate the degree of commonality between you and all available profiles. These questions cover an immense spectrum, from your general political views, to your favourite spirit animal, to the amount of food stored under your mattress, to the shape of houses you find romantic. It is very eclectic.

Cleanliness is not a Chinese invention

Some of the questions ask you to evaluate whether your kitchen is more or less disgusting than that of AirBnB host Mike Chen. I don’t know why messy people would supply a response to that.

Dating Site Questionnaire

Many of those match riddles are pretty harmless, and I filled out some 150 of them to increase the potential for positive matches. However, many questions carry a bias that would likely preclude me from reaching a high match score with anyone but myself, because they build on issues that I never even think about, especially not when considering someone as a potential partner. Questions such as “which of these three painters do you like best?” or “would you go to a sports bar for a first date?” are utterly irrelevant for my life.

Sure, I could just answer with whatever comes to my mind, but that immediately decreases my matchability. Ladies who do care about one particular painter will think that I don’t like their painter of choice. Granted, that concerns about 1% of the population and barely impacts my potential match score, but add a dozen of these together, and my scoring decreases by 10%. Scale that up to 150 questions, and these tiny decisions will make the difference between ‘that’s a guy I’d like to meet’ and ‘What’s he doing here?’

What do you even mean by ‘Sports Bar on a first date?’ Do I frequent these TV-filled taverns? Do I hate sports? Is there any team contest I would watch in public? [The answer is rollerderby; thank you.] Since I neither hate nor love sports bars my answer obviously depends on context, which is something I can’t provide by clicking one of the three boxes provided.

My patent solution is to skip all questions that I find ambiguous. If our first date takes us to a sports bar, I promise not to roll around on the floor, kicking and screaming. However, I wouldn’t consider it a good opportunity to chat while three hundred hooligans practice their ritualistic chants.

may-meltdown

Rollerderby rules. How good of me to find a place and time to point that out.

Sex before the date

And then there are the real trouble makers; questions like “How quickly after seeing someone do you usually end up in bed with them?” or “Would you have sex on a first date?” Those inquiries are really just setting me up for a fight, because there is no right answer to any of them. To be honest, there are a lot of sex questions on that site (it’s more like an introverted and sophisticated Tinder, really), and I skipped nearly all of them.

For starters, there is no “usual” in my relationship to sexual intercourse. I’d like to have some, some day, but I don’t think it’s an appropriate consideration before I meet someone for the first time. No matter how I respond to those sex questions, the underlying assumptions will always be that 1) coitus is an important topic for me in a fresh relationship, and 2) after a set number of dates I expect to fornicate with a woman. As much as the general idea excites me, I am not on that dating website to find a carnal connection. If copulation was my primary goal, I would just upload a polished photo to Tinder, and frame it in pointless sexual innuendos.

I could easily imagine being intimate with a woman on our first date. People fall in love ‘at first sight’, so deciding on sexual intercourse during that time frame should not stretch anyone’s imagination. People who claim that coitus after the first meeting is an unbreakable taboo are either liars, or ultraconservative hutterites. And in the latter case they might actually still be liars, if the reports on child abuse and incest in ultraconservative communities are anything to go by.

The same goes for the opposite approach of “I need to know someone really well before I become intimate with them.” The only people who would be opposed to sniffing each other out before having intercourse are sex addicts, and as mention above, they have their own kinky websites. There is no conceivable reason why a person who only procreates with a confirmed long-term partner would refuse to meet someone who typically pleasures their partner after the third date, solely on the basis of that sensual disconnect. Show me a single woman who would refuse to have dinner with George Clooney, if he confessed to usually having sexual intercourse on the second date!

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This is what most men are ultimately after in a date. But if we say that out loud, we only earn disdain.

Avoid erotic discourse, unless you’re really into it

Whatever option I select, it will always be the wrong one. Half of all women will think I am needy for even talking about coitus, while the other half consider me prude for precluding sex from the first date menu. When I consider the greater implications of these sex questions, it just leaves me without any viable response. Sometimes silence says it best.

I couldn’t even employ the truth, because “I usually don’t have sex” does not feature among the multiple choices provided. (This would also inform ladies about my sexual inexperience, which probably leads most women to reject me off-hand. We shall cover that topic and its underlying idiocy another day.)

Let’s drive this derailed train of loose thoughts over the cliff, before I lose another paragraph to pointless ranting. At the end of the day I need to be able to identify myself with my own dating profile. Therefore, I avoid any questions that are front-loaded, or too complex to answer by clicking a preformed box. I recommend you do the same.

Alright! Next up: more discourse about sex, dating, and maybe even a long deserved return to real life actual problems. Unless I finally get to finish that blog about mindfulness I’ve been working on since the dawn of empathy. Let me know in the comments if there is anything YOU would like to read about.

 

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