We would all like to think that we are the perfect woman. Or at the very least close to it, I mean, no one is perfect really, and so maybe perfection is not the word I’m really looking for. I think most women would like to be seen as a good person and be the best girlfriend or something like that, for others to be able to see their true essence, the goodness that lives within. That said there is absolutely no denying that we would all like to meet the perfect man. My perfect man would be tall, at least 180cm, that’s 5ft 9, and most definitely English. Those are the first two pre-requisites in my search for Mr Right, my very own Fifty Shades of Grey without the over the top kinky stuff…

It took me a while to read the first Fifty Shades of Grey’s installment and honestly I skimmed through most of the sex parts. I realised though, in the end, it is a love story, pure and simple. Who would not want to meet a rich, tall, handsome and smart guy? Besides, who is perfect anyway? We all have our problems and more than our fair share of baggage… I like to read a good book but sometimes I like to let my mind relax and dream a little… Fifty shades of grey was like watching a chick flick movie and dreaming all at the same time…

Why an English man? Just because I love the accent, plain and simple, there is something so sexy about the English accent, a hint of intelligence laced with the promise of adventure… But the chances of finding a tall English guy in Australia and more specifically on the Sunshine Coast where I live were near impossible. Or so I thought.

Many people have told me that online dating is plain stupid and a waste of time.

They think that only weirdos join online dating sites, social dropouts that can’t hold a conversation, or sex crazed men that want to cheat on their girlfriends and not get caught. I do agree there are a lot of those, but you will find people like that in a bar too. Besides, if there were more chances to meet a good guy in real life then why am I on those online dating sites and more importantly why am I still single? Maybe it’s because I’m the problem, there’s something wrong with me… yeah well I’ll get to later on!

stuzz-assholeThroughout my life I have met some perfectly decent guys in normal ways, but, yes there is a ‘but’, there was always issues attached to them too. I met a guy in a library in London, oh so romantic I hear you swoon, but the next minute (literally) he wanted to marry me. WTF! He wanted to help me, which was fine but the very next day he became very controlling and a little bit possessive even though I never once gave him the impression I needed protecting. I am a fiercely independent woman so I was just not interested, period. And at the time, I had just landed in London and my priorities where to find a place to live and a job. I was also still getting over my last breakup so definitely not interested into a new love life.

I met another great guy in a train station. He was tall with the sexiest English accent ever. Add to that funny, caring… and married! I met another great guy in a hotel where I was staying, but he was shy. Not only that, but when he finally managed to pluck up the courage to take me to Starbucks, he let me pay for my coffee! There was also the young guy who was simply too young, and then the ones that just wanted sex with an older woman, do I look like a cougar to you?

So meeting a guy in real life is as hard as meeting someone online.

There is an advantage to finding someone online. You get a chance to chat before you actually have a face to face meeting, which means you can uncover a few things that would normally take much longer to find out. Sometimes the inhibitions aren’t there too, you write things you wouldn’t normally say. Of course it depends on the person, some guys would rather just talk after one email which is fine too, but sometimes it can lead to something more intimate.

There’s also the belief that you shouldn’t go out looking for a man, if it is meant to happen it will happen. I met my ex-boyfriend online a few years ago, totally unexpected and out of the blue. We became best friends, then after we met for the first time six months later we realised there was something more than just friendship after all. It may have been a case of you can’t see what’s right in front of you until, just like in the movies, you finally realise it when it is too late! We did date for a couple of years and we are still friends, but circumstances meant we couldn’t be together. He is the one person in my life who told me I was perfect.

More recently I met a guy at work who seemed nice and totally not my normal type but I thought I would give it a try. We dated for a while. He was caring, funny and English which seemed like a dream come true… until one minute we were walking down the street, the next he was in jail!

Anyway, I don’t think I am looking very hard for someone, I am always on the go and keep myself very busy but I do get those moments when I feel lonely. It’s the small things that can make you miss not having a special someone to share your time with and not just sharing the washing up duties. So I decided to re-open my online dating profiles just in case. After all, it is always nice to have someone to share your success and failures with, someone you can confide in and have those inside jokes with, you know what I mean….

I had only been back online for a few days when I received a nudge from this guy, Lee. His profile was nothing too exciting but I loved the goofy pictures. It was not just the fact that he was tall and ENGLISH, there was that gut feeling to say yes after reading his profile a few times, staring at the pictures, getting the butterflies of excitement and then finally making up my mind. I hate getting a gut feeling but not knowing exactly why or how to rationalise it.

My Very Own Fifty Shades of Grey Part 1We corresponded with a few emails at first, back and forth. Then I did not hear from him for a few days. He apologized and we exchanged a few more emails for about an hour before he finally gave me his number. It was already late in the evening so we only exchanged a few text messages that night. The following day we sent messages to each other all day long, asking questions about each other even though we had already covered quite a few points through emails and general chit chats. To me it seemed we had really connected. He even sent me a text at 4.30am to which I replied at 6am saying some people do sleep at this time, but then I sent him a message giving him the okay to send me one at any time. After all it had to mean something if he was sending me messages at that time of day.

I had only just changed my phone plan the week before, to a more limited one, because I thought it was pointless paying money for something I wasn’t using. Within one week, I was out of credit. I checked my usage and found that we were sending about 50-60 messages to each other a day. Even though I was already an early riser, I found myself getting up earlier and earlier just to wait for that 4am morning message. I told him things I had never told anyone before, mostly because I thought they were just silly things that people would probably laugh at but he did not, even encouraging me to tell him more, anything and everything. He was sometimes pushy but not in a bad way and I just had to tell him I felt uncomfortable, he would apologize or we would just talk about why I couldn’t talk about whatever it was. At times his direct approach would make me unsettled especially with some subjects I was not used to talking about. I had never been asked questions like that before. That made it difficult to divulge my own feelings if I wasn’t even sure about why I had them or if they were even there having never thought about it before. He seemed such a caring and understanding man. I could also sense Lee was a very confident person and I really liked that.

I wanted someone who knew what they were talking about, where they were going in life, exactly how to get there and more importantly not afraid to act. I really could not fault Lee even though he told me he was far from perfect. It was hard to explain why and how, this just felt so good. There were warning signs but for now I was happy to ignore them. The good far outweighed the bad and we all know that no one is perfect, flaws can be attractive in their own way, or so I thought.

I can remember during one conversation I mentioned I was useless when it comes to pain. “So I guess there won’t be any spanking?” he said. I replied “what is this? Fifty shades of Grey?” He laughed, although I’m still not sure if he knew about the book. From that moment on in my head he became MY very own Fifty Shades of Grey. I felt alive again and savoured every single message he sent.

We spent the next 3-4 weeks messaging each other. Then suddenly and with no warning the messages just stopped. I did not get my morning message. I sent him one around lunch time, no answer, another the next day and again the following day, still no answer. I had no idea why he wasn’t returning my messages or why things had changed. I came to the conclusion that he was probably messaging someone else at the same time as me and had decided to choose her over me. There was no evidence for me to think this way but the lack of contact was so quick and sudden that it was the only reason that made sense. Someone else was giving him more attention and giving him what he wanted.

I did have a similar experience before, a guy sent me daily text messages for a week, even called, then on the day we were supposed to meet up he sent me a text saying he had to help a friend and would call me back later. You can guess that I never heard from him again. There’s absolutely nothing wrong with just wanting to chat with people, messaging can be fun without the daunting task of taking things further or actually meeting people but what happened to honesty? That reminds me of another story. When I first joined rsvp, I was chatting to a guy and we hit it off instantly. We even set a date, even though he lived a few hours away. Then he came back to me to say that he had been chatting to another girl and she seemed okay, lived closer to him so it seemed a better choice for him to have a date with her. I was disappointed yes, but I really appreciated his honesty.

I woke up every morning before 4 am hoping I would get a message, the message. I was devastated and I could not understand why I was feeling so hurt, why it was so painful to feel that way when I had never met him and had only actually spoken to once on the phone.

Even though we only sent messages they all had a meaning to me and made my day. He met some of my needs, he made me feel special and important. I realised how much I missed having someone in my life, someone that cared, someone to make me laugh and this one man had broken my defenses, I trusted him with my emotions and I am pretty sure I would have had no problems crying to him if and when I needed to. His silence still did not make any sense. I felt so down. It was like I had withdrawal symptoms. At times I had difficulty breathing, like I was suffocating. Then the worst thing happens, the self-doubt hits. Why me? What’s so wrong with me that he would choose someone else? Why couldn’t he even tell me? I could not understand why this pain was so strong for something that wasn’t even a real relationship! Perhaps the fact that I felt this way was proof that we were in a relationship, and so for him to leave me not knowing was cruel.

I had completely trusted who he said he was, but we hadn’t met so there was a niggling doubt creeping in there too. I know my self-esteem was not helping, the self-doubt creeping in with its whispers of what if I’m not pretty, what if I’m too fat, what if I’m not good enough in bed. So for him to drop off the face of the Earth left me feeling like I had been stabbed straight through the heart. I had trusted him and given him a part of myself in those messages. I cried for days. There was still not a single day that went by without me hoping and longing for a text, jumping with nervous excitement every time I heard that text tone on my phone only to be met with disappointment. Not a single day went by without shedding tears. Those days turned into weeks. The pain subsided but not the hurt.

So what were the warning signs I ignored? First, he said he would call but it would never happen. I don’t care how busy you are surely you can find 5 minutes to call. Then he said he would fly me over, to choose a restaurant and he would find a hotel nearby, again that too never happened. He finally called and we talked about it, a plan was made to meet then after the call was over the subject was never brought up again. At some point I made a joke, can’t remember exactly but it was about the differences between men and women and he took it the wrong way. He completely over reacted, ranting about women this and women that…I tried to phone him so we could talk about it, arguing by text is no fun plus it’s hard to convey emotion and other nuances by text. Of course, he didn’t answer the phone, I left a message trying to explain, and he never ever mentioned it.

Enough, I had to snap out of it, this was not like me. I re-opened my profile and within days another tall English guy contacted me…

Want to know more? Post your questions or share your thoughts about online dating below.

My Very Own Fifty Shades of Grey Part 2: Who is the new guy and Lee returns….