Dating: Hope vs Delusion

My American boyfriend*, DualDrew, wrote an interesting piece about personal ads and dating profiles: Hope or Delusion? The Modern Kinky Personal Ad. Go read it.

My comment got too long over there, so I’m posting it here instead.

I’m going to take issue with the opinion Drew floated about hypocrisy and the idea that I have to BE what I want in order to be allowed to want it (i.e. I see no problem with unfit people wanting someone fit, or bald people liking flowing locks, or short people liking someone tall, young people wanting someone older or vice versa on any of those etc). Meh: Tastes are tastes and I think it’s fine to want what I don’t offer myself, especially since complementary desires are often opposites which is wonderful.

But that wasn’t the point of his post. His point was that there are personal ads where the poster is so specific that it’s just wildly unrealistic. His example was this ad in the wilds of Tasmania (a small island state with a capital city of some 220k people, and this person was living in a rural area).

Single, 48 year old kinky Master in XXXXXX village seeking slave to own part time leading to full time. Seeks hispanic male, ages 33-36, between 5’10” and ‘6’2″, must be smooth, must have post graduate degree, must be willing to accept complete ownership, MUST BE LOCAL and do not message if not.

The whole thing is so very specific. The ‘ages 33-36’ bit is the kicker for me. You’re 37? Eww, GTFO! It just… makes no sense.

Do I think some people are delusional about what they want? Yes, absolutely.

Do I think some people are delusional about what they offer? Yes, absolutely.

Do I think some people are so bizarrely narrow in what they want that they will NEVER find it? Yes, absolutely.

We all have preferences, of course, but I get automatically and viscerally turned off when someone describes the person they are seeking in huge detail, like they are custom-ordering a happy meal off a menu at the drive-through.

And I am turned off by it even if I exactly fit the description (tall, slim, fit, blonde, dark eyes, well educated, intelligent, mature, articulate, funny, great breasts (:P)… yeaaaahhhh, I was out by the third adjective, pal). They are showing me exactly how they view relationships and how they view their partner, which is Drew’s point.

They are somehow thinking “If this person fits exactly into my fantasy box, I will finally be happy” and that’s a bunch of ‘set-up-to-fail’ bullshit. When someone’s requirements are so very specific, I’m pretty damn sure that as soon as their perfect date steps outside of those confines, we will hit the ‘I-didn’t-order-this-meal-that-has-it’s-own-opinions’ box, and that’s going to be a problem.

From an F/m perspective, partner and relationship preferences, and a list of kinks is great. I can get a general view of whether we might be compatible in that sense. But when a malesub describes in great detail how I will treat him (and this is not uncommon), again, I’m out. Even if what he describes is exactly what I like. And my reasoning is the same: He has a specific fantasy script already laid out and his partner’s role is to follow it, and that’s not a relationship (much less an F/m one).

Deal breakers? Great, list them.

Broad preferences? Cool, let’s hear them.

But a specific laundry list that reduces the other person to a very narrow set of acceptable characteristics and behaviours? Aw hell no. Nope nopenopenope.

_

*Fine, not really my ‘boyfriend’ since he is a double gold star gay man but that is a minor detail… :P

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33 Comments

    1. They make you happy*!

      *this assertion is contingent on a number of factors, one of which may well be that you are a small child and don’t know good food. All opinions are final and no correspondence will be entered into.

      Ferns

  1. Lots of thoughts on this post and Drew’s.

    In my experience people with the laundry list of requirements are impossible to please. Even if the potential partner checks all the boxes s/he will never be good enough. It’s the Steinfeld syndrome: there will always be SOMETHING that’s not quite right.

    And checking the boxes doesn’t guarantee compatibility. In Drew’s example, what if the man checks the boxes, but eats crackers in bed, or spends money like there’s no tomorrow, or wants children, or, or, or?

    Men with a laundry list — I mention men since I am het; I imagine women are the same — in my older age group have often been fantasizing for decades. Often they’ve been widowed or divorced. Their wife was Vanilla or they never had the guts to discuss kink with her. Now, they think, it’s my time to get my kink on. But here’s the rub: They’ve read and consumed porn and imagined for so long that their images are fossilized. There’s no room in them for a real, live woman, ESPECIALLY a dominant woman. The quickest way for a man to get rid of me is to tell me I’m not dominating “right”. That usually means I’m not like the ONE other relationship he’s had or I’m not like his fantasy. And it’s cluelessness run amok.

    I admit I’m different than I lot of peopke. I like being partnered with a good man and I wanted that experience again after being widowed the second time. And when I sought my present partner I did it with the skill and focus I brought to a Project Management in my career. I sat down and figured out what resources I had (yes, including money), what changes I was willing to make in my life, what I offered a partner and what I wanted. It took me just about 18 months to find ‘s’ and I feel extremely fortunate that I was so successful so fast. The common wisdom is that you shouldn’t look actively for a partner, that finding Prince/ss Charming will happen magically when you least expect it. For me that has never been the case, and it wasn’t this time.Besides, I’ve never been good at just waiting; I need to be active in working on the important stuff.

    One facet of my good fortune is that, while I didn’t check all Scott’s boxes, he adapted. I’m overweight (he’s fit). He envisioned a relationship where he saw his partner once or twice per week (we live together). What we discovered is that certain shared values trumped some of the things we each thought were so very important. I brought the experience of two good marriages and he brought the experience of one bad marriage; somehow we’ve fashioned a relationship with an intimacy and an intensity neither of us envisioned.

    Surely the long experience we each brought with us has helped. I think we’ve been pretty patient with one another, and we both have a willingness not to be joined at the hip. I think the effort has been well worth it.

    1. “I did it with the skill and focus I brought to a Project Management in my career. I sat down and figured out what resources I had (yes, including money), what changes I was willing to make in my life, what I offered a partner and what I wanted” Sounds to me like you approached this with quite a large laundry list. Very specific list of resources, including money. A specific list of changes you were willing to make. a specific list of changes you were NOT willing to make. A specific list of what you had to offer and by implication what you did Not have to offer. A specific list of what you wanted and. again, by implication, what you did NOT want. Sounds all very specific and detailed to me. Here’s the rub. Specificity and exorbitant detail are OK for you because your the “Dominant woman” and your “Dominance” is entitled to this. The submissive male, on the other hand is not, because he’s submissive. Another example of what plagues so many dominant women today- Dominant Privilege”

    1. Perhaps they should, but they invariably want a *relationship* with their ‘made-to-order’ partner so obviously that suggestion is not going to work.

      Ferns

  2. I wonder if this is a maturity thing? When I was 18, my ideal woman had very specific characteristics. As I grew older, I met attractive women who did not meet them and gradually realised, one by one, none of them mattered. I’m not saying I have no deal-breakers or broad preferences, but those specific characteristics were my immaturity speaking. Perhaps some guys, somehow, failed to grow out of this?

    1. It could be part of it. Who knows.

      There is certainly some kind of gap between their thinking and reality, and I suspect there are a million possibilities in the ‘why’.

      Ferns

  3. I often suspect there’s some kind of conscious or unconscious avoidance strategy going on when people are this narrowly nit-picky. Like they’re deliberately pricing themselves out of the market because they’re actually scared to take the plunge with anyone. In terms if heterosexual dating etc., certainly I’ve known men with low self-esteem who’ve hid behind a sexist ‘standards’ thing, because they’ve doubted that they’d be found attractive themselves. Usually however, this condition is temporary unless he has a deeper rooted personality disorder!

    The degree thing though! He doesn’t even care what it’s in, so it’s not like he wants to have conversations about a particular topic or anything. There are people with PhDs with very little to say that’s original or insightful, and then there are people who left education at 16 and have fascinating outlooks on life, so that really is just snobbery. Not to mention the 3 year age bracket?! :D
    Good luck, sir!

  4. Could I have all the above with fries?

    No? Oh well!

    Seriously, this is why I love you and…

    … I just read what Lady Bay said, and it bears repeating…

    …your breasts are FABULOUS!

    OK nothing to do with anything, but I feel good to have got that off my, ahem, chest!

    Seriously again, everything you wrote, I agree with & I love the way you think.

    That would be my sole requirement, and should I ever be so lucky as to serve you, my fantasy is for you to do whatever it is you want to do; I’m sure it’d be fun!

    Hugs,
    Mark
    xxx

  5. We need proof your breasts are fabulous Ferns! I mean anybody can say they are
    Coug

    *Yes I have seen the pics, but quiet at the back, one more can’t hurt!

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