The Plastic Surgeon, Part 1*

A few years back I met a plastic surgeon on a dating site. He emailed me a well written email talking about how great he was and complementing my pictures. He seemed pretty full of himself, but I thought, Hey, he’s a surgeon, I can let a few things slide.

We talked on the phone. Rather, I should say he talked. And talked. And talked. I said a few “mm hmm”s and such, but it was mostly just him droning on and on about how intellectually superior he was to everyone else. The few exchanges I can remember were him asking what I was into sexually. At the end of this “conversation” he asked me if I wanted to meet him. I should have said no. If I had a conversation with someone like that now, I would know better and would say no.

But back then, I was still looking for someone to validate me, someone to protect me, and take care of me, someone to use. I was shallow. I thought about how wealthy he was, the nice life I could have if I was with him, etc. Instead of listening to all his bragging and thinking, What a boring blowhard!, I thought, If a guy as successful and as rich as him likes me, then that will mean that I am worthy.

We met at a really nice restaurant. He was full of appearance-based compliments about my dress, body, hair, etc. I’ve always struggled with my body image so I felt hugely validated by this guy. I would have felt validated by any man that showered me with compliments, but this guy was a plastic surgeon. It was his job to make women beautiful. If he thinks I’m pretty, then fuck, it must actually be true, I thought.

He was working hard at charming me with the expensive restaurant and the compliments. But underneath that he was weird. The way he spoke, the way he carried himself; something was off. I still can’t quite put my finger on it, but he made me uneasy.

After dinner we walked to his car. He said he wanted to give me a ride to my car, which was only a block away. Of course this was just an excuse to make out with me. I was fine with the making-out, but not fine with everything he did.

At one point he pulled the straps of my dress down, exposing my breasts. It was late at night and there weren’t a lot of people around, but we were still on a public street. I wasn’t cool with this, so I pulled my dress back up and told him “no.” He didn’t listen to me.

He said something like, “Don’t worry, no one can see,” proceeded to pull the straps down again and suck on my nipples. I felt really uncomfortable, but begrudgingly went along with it.

After that date I went home, counted up all the red flags, thanked my lucky stars he had only tried to suck on my breasts, deleted his number and said, “good riddance prick!”

No I didn’t. That’s what I wish I had done. I googled him. Found out more about his plastic surgery practice, swooned over his ivy-leauge education, ignored all of my instincts, and told all of my friends, some of my family, and even my therapist about the “amazing” first date I had just had with this “amazing” guy.

*This is a long story, so I am breaking it up into two parts. I’ll have part two up tomorrow.

Missing the Lame

The other day I had dinner with my friend Polly and her new fiance. They met on Match.com. After he finished entertaining us with a story about his worst online dating experience ever, my friend said, “Imperfect (man, I really need a better pen name) has a lot of great Match.com horror stories.”

The funny thing is, I have never actually been on Match.com. Back when I was dating guys I had met on CollarMe or Fetlife, my vanilla friends would ask where I had met the man of the week. “Oh… on, um… Match.com,” I would reply and then quickly change the subject. This was a sufficient enough answer for most of my friends, but Polly always had a lot of follow up questions about Match, how it worked, and the kind of guys who were on it. So, I would make up a bunch of bullshit. Apparently Polly bought it, hook line and sinker, because one day, after she broken up with her last fiance, she told me that she had joined Match.com, on my recommendation. So in a way, my lies helped her find true love — well, convenient love, at least.

Meeting the finance wouldn’t have been a good opportunity to come clean about my (formerly?) kinky lifestyle so I shared my “Match.com” horror stories. I told them the one about the dude that sent a couple of tightly cropped face pics then turned out to be about 200 lbs. bigger than his profile had stated. He thought that buying me lunch gave him license to try to make out with me… in public… in broad daylight. I had to push him away several times as he lurched at me with a wide gaping maw, looking like he was trying to swallow me whole rather than kiss me. I also told them the story of the tool that made me drive an hour in rush hour traffic (his car was in the shop), acted like he was high on coke, then didn’t even offer to pay for my drinks. At the end of the date, he had the nerve to ask me for a ride back to my part of town, because he was meeting “a friend” there.

At the end of the evening, I found myself thinking, wow, I really miss online dating! Not because of Polly and her fiance’s questionable love connection, but because I miss the shitty dates that would later become entertaining anecdotes. Totally healthy, right? No drama addiction here.

Recent experiences have shown me that I’m not quite ready to start dating again. I might rock at collecting and later relating bad and even traumatic date stories, but I still suck at healthy dating.

Bad Idea of the Week: Blendr

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A couple of months ago, when I was really struggling with my HC obsession, I downloaded Blendr, the straight cousin of Grindr, the gay hook-up app. I also downloaded Grindr, ’cause HC swings both ways. I went on both apps a few times with an empty profile. No evidence of HC was found on either one, so I deleted both and forgot about them.

Until the other night, when I realized that Blendr was still on my phone. Interesting how I somehow forgot to delete the straight app, not the gay one, right?

Blendr doesn’t market itself as a hook-up service. It bills itself as a social networking app, where users can meet new friends in their immediate areas, who share similar interests and hobbies, like spanking, oral sex and fucking yoga, wine tasting and writing. I went on Blendr Friday night and filled in some profile details, like my age, gender, and hobbies.

At first glance, Blendr looks totally PG-13 and benign. Users can’t upload explicit photos or text. I thought, Well this is totally Kosher. This isn’t against any bottom lines, right? I don’t remember if I shared this on here yet or not, but I am now able to “practice sober dating.” I am available to meet appropriate men in appropriate places (e.g. not Craigslist) to date soberly, meaning no sex outside of an exclusive, committed relationship. Never mind that I told myself I would stay away from online dating for a few months and only try to meet men in the real world. Blendr is on my phone and it only shows me users that are within a couple of miles from me. It’s basically the equivalent of taking a walk around my neighborhood and smiling and saying hello to all my neighbors… Except I don’t walk around my neighborhood at 2am. Also, when I smile and say hi to my neighbors they usually don’t flash their genitals at me.

In just a couple of days of using Blendr I’ve received dozens of cock shots, been hit on by married men, and gotten a few offers for phone sex. All in all, a pretty good time a bad idea.

I’ve been extremely well behaved, though. I block men that make it clear they are only looking for sex, tell me they are married, or send me pictures of their genitals. I’ve also talked to a few seemingly nice men who haven’t done any of the above. I do realize, though, that hanging out on a website or phone app where the vast majority of users are looking for casual sex is playing with fire.

Another troubling issue is how addicted I am to the attention I receive. Every time I log in, I have tons of messages. While I’d like to think this is because of how beautiful I am (I don’t even have a picture up) or how smart, charming and funny I am (I haven’t filled out any text); it’s not. It’s because I’m female, and just like on other hook-up sites, the men outnumber the women and anything with a vagina gets hit on relentlessly. This desire for male validation has always been a problem for me and is something working on.

So here’s the plan: I’m going to give myself a couple more days on Blendr to see if it’s an appropriate place to meet potential suitors (spoiler alert: it not) and then delete it.

Have any of you ever used Blendr, Grindr or similar services? Feel free to share any stories in the comments.

Update: I just found the profile of someone I know through my family. Someone who I find both gross and creepy. My sponsor would probably say this is an example of my Higher Power at work. Blendr has been deleted.