1.24.2008

I Hate Dating!

After enjoying a lovely dinner last night with new clergy friends, I came home to unwind, pay bills and talk to this new boy interest. It was an annoying conversation. He asked the same questions that he had already asked. I didn't play it cool. I called him on it. He didn't seem all that bright while claiming to be an intellectual type. Nothing about his personality seemed to have all that much depth.

We had already talked about not showing up at church to "check me out" but he confessed that he had thought about doing it anyhow. I was annoyed. We met online. It's been clumsy with his worklife and Christmas smackdab in the middle of our trying to get to know each other. And he's worse at the phone than I am. (This is a special talent reserved for the very few.)

So, he sends me an email this morning to tell me that he doesn't want to have dinner with me after all. He explains that I'm religious and he's not -- and that will only be awkward. He carries on this inner monologue is five paragraphs of email while also including that I'm not well-read and narrowminded. Is it unfair that I think he's actually the one that's narrow?

I hate that others assume what it means to be religious. I hate that this is a barrier in dating. Ask me. Don't assume that you know. Don't write me off after an awkward conversation because you can't remember that we have already had this conversation. Yes, this is a weird flaw of dating clergy. It's our job to remember conversations and remember details in some strange mental catalog that no one understands. Yes, I remember our conversation and what you said. But, I'm more sorry that you can't imagine what it might mean for someone to be religious and interested in people that are not. I'm sorry that you can't think outside of the box. But, most of all, I'm angry that you sent me this email first thing in my day. I want to pray to God to smite you except for the small problem that I don't understand prayer or God's actions in that way.

But instead, I'm going to talk to a lesbian couple about their union because their home church has shunned them. Isn't it wonderful that I'm called to stand in these wonderful moments of love? Or is it tragic that I'm becoming more bitter?

8 comments:

more cows than people said...

oh, blech, yuck, grr...

what other sounds can i spew out... the whole thing sounds immensely frustrating.

sending you love.

LittleMary said...

son of a bitch. I. Hear. You. Yes sister. Doesn't sound like he is worth your time at all. One day, one day. I may quote you in my sermon on Sunday, is that ok? I will send you draft.

Pastor Peters said...

little mary, you're quoting me? what? i definitely want to see a draft...

Audrey said...

damn girl - that sucks. dating sucks there is no doubt. i can't beleive you would turn too bitter - you have a great church that at least grants unions...

damn those annoying stupid men.

Susie/Nueva Cantora said...

Narrow? That might be the mildest adjective for him! Geez.

Songbird said...

I once was Yahoo chatting with a man who, upon realizing I was in seminary, typed the following:
"You're going to be a minister? I could never sleep with a minister."
Um, who said you were ever going to be asked?

Jane R said...

Oh, ick. I'm so sorry you had to go through this nonsense.

I sort of gave up on "dating." I remember once back when I was a young campus minister, a man I'd started seeing (this was way, way before the internet, I am showing my age) and had met through a theater production in which he and some mutual friends were involved (nice way to meet) sat me down (after we'd been involved for a little while) in a way that made me figure this was the beginning of the end because it began with "we have to talk" and said he just didn't think it would work because, said he "I'm an atheist." Had I said it was a problem for me? No. It wasn't. (Maybe it would be now, but at that stage of my life and for that relationship, it really wasn't an issue.)

Then there are the guys who are the other way around and who think it's just sooo sexy that you're a minister. You can't win.

My cousin met the love of his life on eHarmony.com, but he's not a minister, he's a nice Jewish boy and furthermore he's in the Pacific Northwest. Here in the Southland if I say on eHarmony that I'm a Christian, you should see who shows up as a match! Oy.

Anyway, you have my sympathies. You're still young so I hate to say "don't waste your time any more" but maybe there are better ways to meet people. Clergy conference??? (Right -- the .05% of clergy men who aren't married or gay.) The Sierra Club? A political campaign? (Right, in your spare time.)

It's enough to make one return to the old-fashioned "let your parents make a match for you." Aaargh!

There's also the fact that it's much harder in a small or medium-sized town, for all the reasons you know. The Big City, which so many find impersonal and difficult, is probably an easier place for a minister to find a mate.

Sarah K. said...

Ugh. Ugh. I'm a little late here, but I'm just having flashbacks the email I got while working on a sermon at a coffee shop about two years ago, that just left me in tears. Similar situation. I still can't work in that coffee shop. Blerg. I'm sorry, girl!