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My Online Dating Woes.[Bit of a rant.Sorry]


Lisa O`Brien
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OK,New Year new start and all that. I joined an online dating site and there are lots of men who seem quite presentable and suitable within a say,100 mile radius of me. There is only one problem.In nearly every photo of nearly every male on this site[and others i`ve looked at but not joined],the men have uploaded a photo of themselves,in a really high percentage of cases,with some glass of poison in their hand [i.e. alcohol]. Their profiles often say something along the lines of "would love to cuddle up on the sofa with someone special with a bottle of wine". What the hell??? Can people not enjoy themselves,and therefore the company of others without alcohol? Maybe it`s me and i`m the social leper.The site i`m on allows you to see how many people have looked at your profile on a daily basis. Since I joined over 300 men have looked at my profile. Now i`m either the Elephant Man or else my Teetotalism [is that even a word???] is completely putting them all off. My parents never drank, my sister doesn`t drink. I was never around it at all growing up. My son`s late father was a chronic alcoholic who used to very regularly hit me,regardless of whether he had actually been drinking or not. I hate alcohol with a passion. There IS a dating site called Sober Dating,but i`m not sure; I get the impression half the people on it are sober because they are alcoholics who have found sobriety,not someone like me who just never,ever touches the stuff. The Nutcracker "prankster" has,however,cheered me up a bit. I guess i`m just feeling a bit sorry for myself, and a bit like an outcast for being a non-drinker,and wanting to meet someone the same.Does anyone have any suggestions? [Apart from turning to drink.?!!!!!]

Edited by thequays
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I know nothing of dating sites- but I do know something of being a person who doesn't drink.  

 

I just don't like to consume alcohol..  When a glass of alcohol approaches my face and my nose smells the alcohol my brain says in capital letters:  THIS IS NOT FOOD.

 

I don't care if others drink wine with a meal, or toasting a celebration - I can do that in grape juice (which I love).

 

But, through the years, I have found that people often consider my non-alcohol consumption as a sign that I think I am  "holier than thou" or "unsociable" or unsophisticated (I don't mind that assumption) or "unfriendly."   Folks, I can be friendly without alcohol.

 

It also gave me a problem when I went to an office or studio party (especially New Year's) and found that people resented the fact that I was the only one who remembered what happened.  

 

As the years went by, people who thought along those lines drifted out of my  life.  And, the people who want my company without caring about my non-alcohol consumption stayed in my life.  

 

If a potential date based his assessment of me upon the fact that I don't drink - well, good ridance to bad rubbish.  

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Pretty much the only time I get my photo taken these days is when I'm out at a special party/ having a girlie night out etc and the chances of having a glass in your hand are quite high then! I actually don't drink very much at all. The problem with those dating sites is that you tend to make lots of assumptions ( i would anyway!) and are judging people on very little info. Someone actually being tee total wouldn't bother me at all but if I saw it written down I would wonder whether it was because they were a problem drinker.

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You could be right Moomin. As was the case with my son`s father. He thought my being a teetotaller would help him to get sober,as I would be some sort of an incentive to him. As i said every cloud has a silver lining and all that.I doubt very much my son will ever drink.He is due to start a placement at a local alcohol detox centre,[for part of his college course].which was often his father`s second home. For the course you could pick whichever kind of setting you wanted,I.E.a Nursing Home. But Sean for his first placement absolutely wanted to work there. I hope though they don`t just have him making cups of tea for the ones in the detox unit. He will have to  each day  write about it for his college BTEC,so will have to put down something of interest and what he has learned,etc. Sean would like to work with people with addiction problems. I actually think if his father was still alive he would be really proud of him. 

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I think Moomin has hit the nail on the head with the word 'assumptions'.  You cannot really know if someone who does not drink alcohol chooses not to, has had a problem with alcohol or will be someone who judges, preaches others for drinking.  Likewise you cannot really tell if the person 'cuddling on the sofa with the bottle of wine' actually wants the wine or is trying to say that they are not bothered about parties, pubs etc but would be just as happy staying in.  In a society where having an alcoholic drink is seen as the norm they may think putting 'teetotal, prefer staying in to going out' might not get them any dates.  I'm not saying you are a someone who frowns and lectures those around you enjoying their alcohol, anymore than someone who doesn't smoke will lecture smokers or a Christian will be always trying to convert a non-believer - all are pre-judgments that people make from seeing a single word written down but not actually knowing the person.  Incidentally, my alcoholic consumption is at most a glass of wine 3 or 4 times a year and I certainly don't think not drinking makes you 'a social leper'.

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How I sympathise with posts 1 and 2!

 

I just don't like to consume alcohol..  When a glass of alcohol approaches my face and my nose smells the alcohol my brain says in capital letters:  THIS IS NOT FOOD.

 

Wish that was all my brain said to me: mine's more like "Ugh, get that stuff away from me or I'll be sick" :).  Christmas Day communion services are particularly bad: all that (usually cheap) red wine floating around on people's breath and then they insist on hugging you because it's Christmas.  I don't in any way mind the hugs: it's just the fumes that get me :)

 

But, through the years, I have found that people often consider my non-alcohol consumption as a sign that I think I am  "holier than thou" or "unsociable" or unsophisticated (I don't mind that assumption) or "unfriendly."   Folks, I can be friendly without alcohol.

 

Yep.  Recognise that one, too.

 

It also gave me a problem when I went to an office or studio party (especially New Year's) and found that people resented the fact that I was the only one who remembered what happened.  

 

It also gives you a problem because you're the only person who realises that the loud guy who's being the life and soul of the party isn't nearly as funny as he and everyone else thinks :)

 

Sorry, thequays, I don't think this helps at all - apart from confirming that you're definitely not the only one - but I could relate the time a male thought it would be funny to try and force alcohol down my throat ...

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How I sympathise with posts 1 and 2!

 

 

Wish that was all my brain said to me: mine's more like "Ugh, get that stuff away from me or I'll be sick" :).  Christmas Day communion services are particularly bad: all that (usually cheap) red wine floating around on people's breath and then they insist on hugging you because it's Christmas.  I don't in any way mind the hugs: it's just the fumes that get me :)

 

 

Yep.  Recognise that one, too.

 

 

It also gives you a problem because you're the only person who realises that the loud guy who's being the life and soul of the party isn't nearly as funny as he and everyone else thinks :)

 

Sorry, thequays, I don't think this helps at all - apart from confirming that you're definitely not the only one - but I could relate the time a male thought it would be funny to try and force alcohol down my throat ...

 

 

Yes, I've met that guy, too.  :)

 

Or the one who tried to convince me that a little alcohol in juice is okay since I'd wouldn't taste it - well, then - why should I add it, I wondered.

 

Then there was the time I filled my glass with orange juice (I like orange juice) but when people realized I didn't have any vodka in it - they got angry. 

 

And you can add rum cake to the list of THIS IS NOT FOOD.

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Their profiles often say something along the lines of "would love to cuddle up on the sofa with someone special with a bottle of wine". What the hell??? 

 

"Cuddle up on the sofa with someone special"  :wacko: Oh yeah????? Sounds a bit dodgy to me - I bet that's not all they're after!!!!!

 

Mind you, if they get too enthusiastic, you could always hit them over the head with the wine bottle... ;)

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All the comments on here are making me smile.! I have amended my profile to explain that I am not an alcoholic,so they understand. There seems like a very nice man in Belfast [about 40 miles away from me]. We`ve been "talking" on the site. He`s 54,a widower and has no children. It`s very,very early days,but will keep you posted.

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Quite.  Mind you, considering what American ice creams tend to have in them, I can't see much difference, apart from the alcohol content.

 

Agreed.  But this American searches for the simple and sane:  chocolate and/or vanilla.

 

I also think that fermenting is a terrible thing to do to a perfectly fine grape.

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Thequays, the reason a man talks about "sharing a bottle of wine" is because he is trying to build the sort of romantic image of the sort of man he thinks a woman wants.  He is trying to show he is in touch with his "femine side".  The truth is, if he does drink, he would probably be happier down the pub with a pint.  But he knows that isn't going to appeal to the ladies, however true it may be. Personally,  I think any references to alcohol should just be ignored, and judge the person by their other interests.

 

It's strange, isn't it, how some people find a non drinker a bit of a challenge.  It is very rude of someone to try and get a person to taste something they don't want or don't like.  Funny thing, it is only with alcohol,  nobody would ever insist that somebody eat raw oysters, or brussel sprouts, or Marmite or any other food item if they say they don't like it. 

 

However, I have had a problem the other way round.  I have attended evening functions where everybody else is on the fruit juice or mineral water, and they make me feel quite uncomfortable if I accept a glass of wine.  There are some people who take it upon themselves to lecture me on how bad alcohol is.  I find it irritating, and I nearly always end up having a second glass, just to show them that I am an adult woman who is quite capable of making up her own mind!

 

I don't know what you have said in your profile, but hopefully you have made it clear you are neither a recovering alcoholic nor a member of some strict temperance society. 

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My mum did insist on the brussel sprouts (and a few other things I wasnt keen on) when I was quite young but the mealtimes started lasting so long she gave up in the end.

I love brussel sprouts now though not sure when the change occurred! But jolly glad oysters didn't seem to be on the menu back then as I really don't like these. Mussels and oysters ......are probably the only two foods I don't eat now.

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Mussels, cockles, whelks, oysters (especially with champagne!). I love them all. :-)

I do find individual choices & preferences to food interesting, I for one can't stand belly pork as I have childhood memories of my mother serving it coated in breadcrumbs & I remember it being fatty & unpalatable. It has now become quite 'trendy' & I wonder if I chose it in a good restaurant whether it would change my opinion.

Everyone's views are valid and there is some great research regarding cultural attitudes to what foods are deemed to be acceptable to eat.

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I can never forget the time in sixth form when went to stay in France for a month on a pen friend exchange.

One day a plate with what looked like a huge pile of rocks was put on the table. When I asked what they were they were very surprised that I didn't realise they were oysters and that I had got to the age of 16 without eating them!

I was surprised too as my only experience of Oysters at the time were shiny polished oyster shells from holidays in Devon and Cornwall!

Nothing like the rocks in the table!!

I did try to try them but in the end just couldn't bring myself to swallow one. They could be fantastic but I'll never know!! I'm usually good at trying most things and have eaten mussels twice and was ill twice so no more for of those for me. But yes agreed rubbery and slippery slimy things just don't appeal as food!!!

Edited by LinMM
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You probably had the cursor positioned over the "bold" button when you started posting.

 

That was my reaction to the concept of oysters, too.  And I've only eaten mussels the once, and found them tasteless and rubbery.  Anyway, since if I'm eating out it's almost invariably before going to the theatre I tend to avoid potentially dodgy items such as seafood - just in case.

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Back to the dating, you must keep us updated as to your progress and whether you find Mr Right or Mr Right Turn Off!  My DD keeps hinting that I should sign up as she doesn't want me to be alone when she goes off to College.  She's only 13 so I figure I have time yet, but am interested to get your perspective.

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Just read post from thequays regarding online dating! How's it going? If I saw a post saying teetotal I have to be honest I would probably think "recovering alcoholic" I am not a teetotal person but very rarely drink alcohol. My husband rarely drinks either and we actually run a pub. I just don't enjoy alcohol very much and it doesn't like me. Just one glass of wine makes me feel lousy the next day. My husband's family are huge drinkers, especially the women, and find me very dull and boring because I don't join them. I quite like my liver and would like to hang on to it for a while longer. Absolutely no offence to those that enjoy, it's just not my thing.

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Hello everyone. Well it`s a disaster.!! I phoned them up to cancel my membership. I only signed up for one month anyway,to see how things went. £30. Not too bad. But that expired on 27th Jan,and you needed to ring them before that date to cancel or else your membership would continue.I phoned to cancel and he asked me why.I just said i`ve had over 300 men look at my profile,but most of any interest live hundreds of miles away from me.He immediately [typical salesman] noticed it was the first time I had phoned to cancel and offered me a free additional 2 week`s extra membership then if I still wanted to cancel they would sort that. At first I was insistent I wanted to cancel there and then,but he persuaded me to take the extra free weeks. Not that it`s made the slightest bit of difference,of course. I exchange messages with a few people and we "talk",but it often fizzles out. Yes there are people who live in Northern Ireland on this site, but it`s a strange old place I live in ,as most people can probably appreciate. Men have looked at my profile who are clearly from the Protestant community [you can tell straight away [usually] from the area somebody lives in. So after viewing your profile [and seeing where I live] they don`t contact. It`s kind of an unspoken thing .We both know why that is. To be perfectly honest,I would be exactly the same way,and i`m English.!! But i`m also a Catholic,of Irish descent,and to be honest,you could meet the most wonderful man imaginable from "the other side" and there would potentially be major obstacles. It DOES work,rarely. But it is a rare thing. I have an English friend here in Newry [a staunchly Nationalist/Republican area] who is a Jehovas Witness. She has been married to a very kind,loving Catholic man, who was in the IRA in the 1980`s.[That`s not an unusual thing for these parts,a LOT of the men were involved].But for an ex IRA man to be married ,not only to an English Protestant,but a Jehovas Witness IS a bit unusual. But he is besotted with her and they are deeply in love.Her neighbours where they live,some of them anyway,have always been hostile,very deeply hostile,towards her. Not because she`s English,but because she`s Protestant.[Not technically of course,but she`s non-Catholic,so to som,e people that `s the same thing]. She`s been called some terrible things to her face. It was the same for me when I first moved here in 1999. I was getting "f******" Prod shouted at me in the street, people banging on my front door and window very late at night.They assumed because of my English accent that I must be a Protestant. Until I went into the local Spar shop the following week, when it was full,and announced very loudly to everyone there that I was a Catholic and so was my son, so would whoever it was trying to intimidate me please leave me alone. It stopped that night and never started again. I`m not even a practising Catholic these days; haven`t been to Mass in over 2 years.But in Northern Ireland that makes no difference,sadly.It`s the label you have and the label you identify yourself with ,that automatically ,from a dating perspective,alienates half the population. I honestly think it will be many,many decades before things are "normal",if ever at all. 

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A very sorry state of affairs unfortunately. But after such a protracted conflict it will take a few generations to die out I think.

 

I remember when I was growing up in the 50's as a child ....in Surrey of all places....there was still some residual Protestant/catholic thing going on then when children went to a different school for example. This was way before all the troubles and mainland bombing campaign etc in the 80's!! Catholics were a minority group so could have just been part of that saga.....persecute the minority.....whoever it is at the time. Nothing too serious but name calling and so on.

The catholic /Protestant thing was more pronounced when I lived up in Liverpool for a while in the early 70's but in that there were definite areas as well where prots and caths lived.....though this may be less so today.

 

I had a polish boyfriend for a while when moved to London.....one born in the UK....and he was a catholic. It was an issue though because then if you got serious you had to agree to bring up any children as Catholic! So that relationship didn't last as that was a step too far for me then!! I didn't want religion to,be a strong part of a child's upbringing by then

 

Good luck anyway!!!

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I have a Catholic friend whose parents were told that they could not buy a house in the cathedral close in Salisbury because they were Catholics in the 1970s. I find that so shocking.

 

If anyone asks me my religion I tend to tell them it is none of their business.  Would that have debarred me from one of the houses?

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