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In 2005, ABC ran a special documentary series called Hooking Up on what was then the new frontier of online dating for women in their late twenties.
As a high school student, I wondered if I would someday be intrepid or—as these women were not-so-subtly stigmatized as—desperate enough to enter this uncharted world. I’m an online dating veteran with hundreds of virtual and dozens of in-person exchanges under my belt. According to the Pew Research Center, 11 percent of all Americans who use the Internet have used an online dating site, and that number jumps to 38 percent among people who are single and looking.
Unfortunately, Bravo relies on old tropes of “good” and “bad” guys and contrived awkward sexual interactions that will make only pearl clutchers blush and the rest of us who have tried online dating for more than hour scream, “so, what?
” Perhaps the only new insight the show offers is in its confirmation of the worst impressions of men in the world of online dating.
These men don’t seem as desperate or even peculiar as the women of Hooking Up.
That may be because bachelors tend to be depicted far more positively and glamorously than their female counterparts who are relegated to stereotypes of shrill spinsters and old maids.
The quintessential creeper is Alex, a 29-year-old who “dates online because it makes getting laid a lot easier.” I’d like to say right here that if Alex didn’t flirt with sexual harassment on his dates (more on that), he would have won me over for his honesty and painful insecurity that manifest as boorishness.
Marcus even walks out of another date with a girl named Mindy while she finishes her meal. The poor foot soldier of love, having survived two nightmare dates, manages to strike gold with a woman with a great bikini shot named Chloe.Bravo, though, somehow tries to cast her as a slutty slob for a) enjoying food and b) mentioning she is on her period (again, scandalous! The episode closes with the two of them kissing and eating ice cream on the couch after Marcus tells her his most recent date went so badly.Yes, men, that is totally the protocol when you come over late at night: make it painfully clear we are you’re sloppy seconds.“After this crazy road, I think I am going in the right direction,” Marcus professes with certainty during this second (just the second! The prematurely rosy ending rings hollow and artificial and, ultimately, is just not that fun to watch.I'm sure most people have had bad experiences on online dating sites including: receiving rude correspondence, being sent disgusting photos, being verbally assaulted, being stalked, blocked for no reason etc and if you want to share any stories now's the time to do so. I thought this thread might do something to educate the new members of the site and for experienced members to share experiences with one and other, so that's why I created this thread.Maybe we can learn to a degree what the opposite sex goes through with the online dating process and it might open our eyes a bit?
He has the sketchiest and vaguest professional pursuits; he’s a car salesman who dabbles in his father’s bail bond business.