A friend recently asked me whether or not I thought she should try on-line dating. As a general rule, I think everyone who's looking to meet someone should try it. I'm not saying it pays off or that it's even necessarily pleasant, but it at least keeps you occupied and desensitizes you (hopefully) to the explosions and gunfire you are likely to encounter along the way.
Clearly I was not making it sound very appealing to her. She responded that from the massive amount of complaining she's heard so far from me and my other friends who've done the on-line thing, there doesn't seem to be one redeemable thing about it all. That it's just one big nightmare. So why do it?
Here's why.When I was a kid, I couldn't think of anything more exciting than a ride on a big, monster roller coaster. The steeper, scarier, more ridiculously gravity-defying the better. Now that I'm older and have learned the life limiting art of self-preservation, all that comes to mind when I imagine a trip to Magic Mountain for a ride on Colossus (my favorite) is the torture of waiting in line for hours to endure an excessively loud two minute ride that will make me nauseous, give me whiplash and leave me with an aching back for the rest of the summer. But when I was an immortal pre-teen, all that pain, discomfort and terror was worth it for those few moments of sheer stomach-dropping thrill.
Dating is the same thing. Hell, LIFE is the same thing. It all essentially starts out as some form of painful, hard work. But you 'll never get that payoff - that thrill - unless you face your fears and dig in to it. I often find myself reciting a quote from Eleanor Roosevelt (God, I never thought I'd utter such a sentence in this blog - sorry), "You must do the things you think you cannot do." If it scares you, then that is a clear sign that you should probably do it. How are you supposed to achieve, grow, learn, or meet someone new if you don't? I'm sure Mrs. Roosevelt wasn't thinking about Match.com when she made this statement, but hey, sometimes dating feels like our own, personal World War II, right?