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Professionally dating turns her off romance

  • Story Highlights
  • Writer excited about going out "professionally" as relationship writer
  • Thrill wears off, she tires of parties and bars, vetoes every guy on e-dating sites
  • Now she's concerned about being too comfortable about being alone
By Leonora Epstein
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(The Frisky) -- A year ago, my average week was something like a "Sex and The City" episode. Maybe it wasn't that funny, maybe my clothes weren't that fabulous, and maybe there weren't that many hot-yet-problematic men, but there were guys, quite a few of them.

Weary of dating, writer rejects all men's profiles she sees on online dating sites.

Weary of dating, writer rejects all men's profiles she sees on online dating sites.

I'd never had a boyfriend in high school. Then I went to an all-women's college. In my senior year, I was in a serious relationship. When that didn't work out, I found a Pandora's Box of pleasures in the City.

It wasn't exactly easy to meet a guy of substance, but it was relatively simple to get a date. All you had to do was poke around online, ask a friend to set you up, demand contact info of the guy you talked to at a party.

Dating culture became intertwined with what I imagined to be the "New York lifestyle" of twenty-something working girls. At a certain point, I took it upon myself to look at dating as part of my job. If I was going to work in the media and writing about relationships -- and myself in them -- I might as well play the part and score the experience.

My week's schedule was obsessively booked. At least one date a week. On a good week, two dates. On other nights, I was networking or out with my girlfriends, but my secret intention was finding my next rendezvous.

Most of the dates were bad, many epically so. Mostly, they were completely mediocre: guys who were cocky, guys who didn't talk, guys who had boring jobs and lives, guys who talked about other girls.

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No matter, I thought. It would all be "practice dating," so I would be completely confident in my choice when someone of quality came around. As for those "quality" types, there were a few false alarms: the ones who, after four dates, I would tell my friends that we were on the road to girlfriend-boyfrienddom. No. Not even close. The Frisky: Online behavior gets him vetoed

Some time around January, I stopped. Not cold turkey, but I slowed things down a lot. As if not wanting to admit to myself that I wasn't made out to be a "dater," I told myself that this slow period was about becoming more "selective."

Then, selectivity gave way to jadedness, where I'd laugh at most online profiles and think every guy at a party or bar was absolutely a loser. The Frisky: 10 signs he's a loser

After my "I need male attention" desire subsided, I realized how different things were. I couldn't tell if they were better, but I had way more time to myself. I drank less and began to get really comfortable -- for the first time ever -- with being alone. Not "alone" in the sense of being single, but spending less time around other people.

Once I left my office job, and became a work-at-home freelance writer, I was astounded. It was incredible! I could go for two days, sometimes more, without seeing anyone -- guys or friends. The Frisky: Do you just NEED a significant other?

Now, I'm starting to realize how my comfort with being alone can become, well, dangerous if I let things go for too long without going out or catching up with a friend. But, for the most part, I can't be dragged to any kind of evident singles event or bar with a hookup scene.

Every day, I receive a dozen or so emails from the dating Web sites that I'm a member of. "He's waiting for you in Manhattan!" "MrHotStuff345 Just Winked At You!" "Leonora, Your New Matches For New York City!" scream the headlines. Delete, delete, delete. Go. Away. I don't even want to unsubscribe because that would mean I'd have to log-in, and who knows how that would make me feel. The Frisky:Some celebs embrace monogamy -- others not sure

Sometimes, though, I do start to wonder: Does this mean I'm depressed? Lack of romantic interest is a prime symptom, you know.

Whatever, I think. Things will turn around. For now, I'm going to take myself to a movie and eat dinner alone, thank you very much. The Frisky: How to go to a bar alone

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