.

Getting Lucky, Really

I consider myself a smart girl. Unfortunately, I don’t always make good choices.

I don't consider myself a prude, puritan, or frigid ice queen when it comes to intimacy. I love intimacy. I am great at intimacy.  In fact, I am a deeply intimate person. I dig sweet kisses behind the knees and soft caresses behind the ears. I'm a foot-rubbing, elbow-tickling, butterfly-kissing fool.

I'm just not like that on the first date… usually. My date with The Eager Beaver was no exception.

Now, the date itself is probably something I should have skipped in the first place.  Things started off on the wrong foot.  I broke a few of my own online dating rules:

1) I gave out my number before the date. I never do this. I think a man should deal with sweaty palms and ask for my number at the end of the date. Giving him my number early resulted in numerous annoying text exchanges for the week prior to the date. I'm not a huge fan of text messaging. To make things worse, he used text-colloquialisms such as "How r u?" and "U no it" (which, is supposed to translate to "You know it," I believe). I actually almost cancelled the date just for that.

2) I let him drive me in his car – Big Mistake! I'm a fan of my kidneys, so I don't want to end up in situations where someone will cut them out of me and sell them on the black market.

Initially, we met in a well-lit, highly-populated public place but we didn't stay there. He suggested we take a drive in his car, which I thought was strange. Still, in my initial judging of his character, I felt like he was harmless.

So, I ended up in the prom-date-seat of a Saturn driving up I95. Before he had started the ignition, he reached for my hand. He asked me if I liked it. I said, "Not really.” I paused, and continued, “I'm just not that touchy-feely before I get to know someone. I mean, it's not bad or anything, it's just not something I particularly like."

A few minutes later, his hand moved to my thigh and then, my inner-thigh.

As he continued to accelerate, I hit the brakes, "Whoa, buddy, don't get so fresh, ok? It's our first date."

He apologized and we went back to holding hands.

I mentioned turning back by the time we hit Westbrook. He said we would in a little bit – like when we reached Mystic. I told him I knew a great coffee shop in New London if he wanted to turn back there. He smiled, “Or, Mystic.” Looking back on it now, it sounds like I was trapped in a car with a serial killer.

I tried to keep conversation rolling, but in the back of my mind, I was wondering why we were driving. Why, with gas at $4 a gallon does this guy want to go for a drive? Why not grab a drink or go roller-skating?

An hour later, he made his intentions known. He pulled off the interstate at a "scenic overlook" in Mystic.  I couldn’t believe I was sitting at make-out point with a guy who hadn’t even bought me dinner first!

He started rubbing my shoulders. He asked me if it felt good? If I liked it? I told him I was really more of a "massage on date three girl" and asked to go back.

He said ok, but asked for a hug first.

I obliged.

He took the opportunity of the hug to kiss me on my shoulder. Then, the other shoulder. Then my neck and my cheek. I debated kissing him or just getting out of the car and asking a friend to come pick me up. I could still taste the essence of the French Onion soup I'd scarfed down for lunch. I decided to kiss him anyway. There was no spark.

The kiss lasted less than a minute before I noticed him showing all the classic signs of a guy who is about eight minutes away from pouting about getting led on and trying to make me feel bad. I didn’t want it to get to that point, so I said, "OK, WE REALLY NEED TO GO BACK NOW," in my big girl voice. He said, "I know" and smiled, like we had just shared something intimate. I rolled my eyes.

Driving back, he started rubbing my arm. I huffed a little bit, but decided arm rubbing was like handholding: harmless, albeit annoying.

By the time we got back to New Haven, the arm rubbing turned into boob squeezing. I was appalled. I asked myself two questions:

1. Was I enjoying this? No.

2. Was I uncomfortable? Yes.

I told him to stop. He apologized and went back to holding my hand. When we got back to my car, I immediately jumped out.

I got a text from him the next day. I told him I had been uncomfortable on the date. He apologized – via text message. I never saw him again.

I know I wasn’t smart on this date.  I may joke about how dating is a jungle, but truthfully, it can be dangerous.

I didn’t know just how dangerous until I started looking up crime statistics. According to a Bureau of Justice Statistics report released in May 2011, there were over 203,000 rapes reported in 2008. That number amazed me. I looked for more information and found the Domestic Violence Resource Center, which stated, “Three in four women (76 percent) who reported they had been raped and/or physically assaulted since age 18 said that an intimate partner (current or former husband, cohabiting partner, or date) committed the assault.”

The online community isn’t immune from date rape. Searching for cases in the news, I found an article explaining that Match.com started screening its customers for past sexual offenses because of a recent date rape case.

As I said, I’m a smart girl, but I don’t always make good choices. I learn from my mistakes though, and will be much more careful in the future.

Katy Dillman September 17, 2011 at 08:12 PM
Yikes - that's scary when you look back on it. I hate those situations that seem harmless-ish at the time, but upon reflection sound like the perfect opening to a horror movie. I'm glad to hear you got home safely - definitely stick to your own rules next time! And maybe join a sports team to meet guys - you get to run around in cute outfits, meet new friends, men and women, and have some fun, too. I'm in my second season of adult co-ed kickball in New Haven - it's a lot of fun, and I've met all kinds of great and crazy people. Definitely check it out (you can also come to see us play on Sundays before you sign up)!
Victoriaanna Adinolfi September 18, 2011 at 12:07 AM
We were talking about online dating at work and the intern and I were explaining the modern rules to a coworker. Essentially, the intern and I agreed that you meet in a well-lit place, with lots of people, dress ugly and maybe even not shower. Terrible, but you can't ever be safe and we, too, enjoy our kidneys. I might have a fake one put it so if anyone ever tried to harvest it, boy would they be chagrined!
Andrew Kaplan September 18, 2011 at 04:06 PM
The guy is an jerk, I surprised you stayed in the car that long. After he touched your inner thigh without your consent, "the date is over" You should have told him to stop the car, called your friend and asked them to pick you up. Failing that your next call should have been 911. Why would you waste your precious time with such an idiot.
Maureen Dixon September 20, 2011 at 01:04 AM
Kickball sounds like a blast! What a great way to meet people. Thanks for the suggestion, Katy. I'll have to check it out!

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