Internet dating

3 04 2011

Well, there’s a ripe topic and no mistake.  I’ve signed up for a number of these in the years since I was widowed, and every one of them comes with their own unique, ermm, quirks.  The first one was eHarmony.   They really wanted me to be a god-fearing straight cisgendered woman… which hey, I’m almost there, right?  Except that my life of faith, how I relate to our Creator, doesn’t really match up with the essentially patriarchal expectations of well, every Christian male on the planet.  I ended up with an inbox full of evangelicals. 

After that it was Yahoo Personals.  Out of a sense of morbid curiosity, I tried Christian Singles.  I tried Senior Singles.  I tried a local singles meetup group.  Right now I’m on Chemistry, still nonpaying and communicating only on the free weekends… because it’s not like I’m getting buried in men who are trying to meet me.  But the occasional live one does pop up and we take our communications outside of Chemistry.

Which is where I am now.  I’ve met (okay, not really, but this is the internet) a man who is several hours away but wants to get to know me anyway.  I have presented myself, in so many words, as a flaming liberal both politically and theologically.  Seriously, I’m not hiding anything here.  I’ve gone through a series of emails with him in which he has tried a variety of shaming techniques about what I believe – for instance, the small email flipout that occurred when I described myself as a Presbyterian Wiccan. 

“You’re personally conservative, so you would never do that skyclad thing, right?” – Well I haven’t done it.  Yet.  But I sure do see the point in it.  If you really want to be open and vulnerable in a sacred experience, naked is a really good way to get there. 

“Horned god?  HORNED GOD?”  Yes, a horned God.  It could be God in a party hat.  It could be anything.  The idea that our visualization of God is the same actual thing as GOD is ridiculous.  It’s a way of focusing our own feelings and thoughts, but it serves to change us, not to actually affect the basic nature of the Creator. 

“Well, at least you’ve never cast spells.”  Please.  Anyone who has ever prayed for a certain outcome?  Has attempted to cast some type of spell, although heaven knows they aren’t going to call it that.   All of the orthodox Christian rituals – walk a certain pattern, say certain words, burn aromatics – are spells.  No, I haven’t done any casting in my own home, primarily because I don’t have a ritual space defined here.  I think there is something quite lovely about setting aside a portion of your living space to sacred ritual.  I just haven’t done it myself. 

I was blessed to be married to a good – and open – Christian man for twenty years.  But I am starting to think that any man I’m with in the future is going to have to be someone outside of the church.  Because they come with so many damned  expectations of what Christian women believe and do, and maybe I was more willing to play along with that in the past, but I’m just not any more.  The patriarchy is everywhere.  It doesn’t have to be inside the walls of my house and it sure doesn’t need to be in my bed.




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