I hate dating. I hate everything about it. I’m not too fond of the games, the scheduling, the facades, people trying to impress you, getting to know someone for nothing, ghosting (even though I have done my fair share), the phrase when am I going to see you, all of it. I need one person to act right so it can all end, and I can officially hang up my hot girl cleats. I know I’m not alone in this. Often I wish I was born earlier. Can you imagine being a teenager or young adult during the golden era of R&B when it was cool to be in love and express to a girl how amazing she was? Now everyone glorifies “multiple” women, singleness, infidelity, one night stands, silicone, and being married to the game. I’m exhausted. I thought that maybe if I dated someone older, I would not be as frustrated, but that was a lie.
I recently spent some time with someone in their late 30s. One of his best friends used to work with me, and I saw him a few times around the office. We’ll name him Jake and the best friend, Bali. I thought Jake was attractive, but he never approached me. I was not going to say anything to him; it takes liquid courage or a grilling apron for me to contact a man. However, a few weeks ago, I went to a networking event, and he was there. My friend and I were talking a few feet from the bar, and I could sense Jake staring at me and then talking back to Bali. It was one of those, “should I go talk to her stares.” I guess Bali gave him the green light because it was not long before he came up to me and asked what we were doing after the event. I didn’t drive, so I honestly did not know.
“Oh, we’re going to go to this other bar,” Salem told Jake and Bali. “Cool, we’ll meet you there.” Salem, myself, and two other girls we met at the mixer walked over to the bar. We were all having a great conversation. We discussed our passions, dating, black history, veganism, arts, and even Saved by the Bell. Somehow we got to the topic of age when the boys arrived, and I found out Jake was 38 and turning 39 in March. He did not look anywhere near 38 and had God, melanin, and the Dr. Sebi diet to thank for that. I didn’t know if I meant 14 years older when I asked God for an older man, but hey didn’t hurt to give him my number.
He texted me right away and made a plan for us to meet up. “Ok, energy,” I said to Salem. “He could have just got it from Bali, and he’s already trying to see me again.” I loved that he made plans; men my age rarely make plans. A few days later, we met at his house, and then we’re supposed to go out and watch the fight, but I ended up having to leave. We had great chemistry though, and I enjoyed his positive energy, so I went back to his place after I finished what I had to do. It was nice to be around someone who’s conversation flowed effortlessly, and that could teach me new things. He was also straightforward. “Just so we’re clear, I want to get to know you more, but not in a platonic way.” He was becoming more attractive by the minute.
But I did have one question. What about me, at 24, made him interested in me. He complimented my mindset, how I carried myself, maturity, and the fact I was open-minded. However, there was one thing he said that made me raise my eyebrows. He exclusively dates women that are much younger than him because “older women are too stuck in their ways and are not open for suggestions of improvement.” The exclusive part worried me. When I was at his house, he came off as quite, particular, but I could sense a slight control issue. “Maybe he dates younger women because he thinks they’ll be easier to control,” I thought in my head. But I just put it on a sticky note because we had a great time and I didn’t want to start being negative.
BUT then the next day happened. He was set on me coming back and acted entitled when I decided against it. A day later, he called me around 9 pm, again at 11 pm, texted me at 1 am, and at 2:30 am. At 9 pm he was asking me to come over and I told him I would much rather sleep in my bed, because I had to get up early in the morning. He tried for a good five minutes to change my mind, but I was not budging. I was in the middle of writing, so I told him I’d call him later. At 11 pm, he called again; clearly, I was taking too long. Jake said to me that I was the only person who has ever understood him, which was insanely weird given we had only spent a few hours together. Was this a tactic? Was he too unstable to understand? Did he regularly change? I called my oldest sister, who’s the same age as Jake, and she validated that this was a little odd. “Age is only a number, ask more questions to see what he means.”
After that is when he got downright crazy, he called me the next day several times, but I was too busy to respond. The next day he messaged me at 5:30 pm, again at 6:45 pm, and then called at 9 pm because I was not responding fast enough. “I was sleep. What’s going on?” “I’ve been trying to get into contact with you all day. I want to see you.” I jokingly responded, “wow, you really missed me,” which he answered, “you’re turning me off.” When I tell you, I laughed so hard. Anyway, once I made it clear that I did not care, that upset him more, and he told me not to text him unless I was going to respond to his phone call. I don’t know about you, but I think a text back is a response. The worst part, I began to type a reply, and he put in the extra effort to find the stop sign emoji and text me,” I said *stop sign emoji* texting me. “This man is crazy.” I thought and laughed.
I figured he would leave it at that, but Salem was sure he’d call in a few days, and he did. The first time, I ignored him completely. The second time, I ignored him completely. The third time, I texted him and told him to stop contacting me and even threw in a polite “thank you.” He responded by practically saying I was a horrible person and wishing me a good life. “Thanks. See you around. ” “No, you won’t; you’ve shown who you are.”
You have to love people who need the last word. Anyways that was a fail, and clearly, I should have expected that from a 38-year-old with no kids, never been a relationship longer than two years, that exclusively dates younger women. If I don’t end up with someone from my past, I’m sure it’ll be someone that’s five or more years older.
But until then, I’ll stay in my bubble and continue to let things happen naturally.