Any normal person would probably acknowledge that going on dates when you’re a) not drinking, b) full of hormones that can heighten your emotions and c) embarking on a process that is quite emotionally exhausting, is A Bad Idea. Of course it is, it’s insanity. So I can’t really explain what on earth possessed me to go on four first dates in the week that I was doing my first ever egg freezing cycle. I can only assume that it was my subconscious telling me that if I didn’t want to have to go down the donor sperm route, I should get my sorry arse out there and find the father of my children.
It being January, it was quite easy to pretend I was doing the whole dry January thing, although not only did I feel weird in that I was pretending to be someone who would actually DO dry January (I’m so NOT that person), but I also felt that I was rather missing a part of what makes me, me. I drink. It doesn’t define me, but it’s certainly a part of me. And, for reasons I’ve explained elsewhere, I think a certain amount of booze helps to smooth the dating experience somewhat.
Anyway, my dates were fine about it. A couple of them tried to press me to “just have one” but mostly they accepted it. I rather admired the one who said “well I’m afraid I’m not going to hold back” and not only ordered a half litre carafe of red but then had another two glasses and, along with the waiter, took the piss out of me by asking if I wanted another elderflower cocktail.
Curiously, my abstinence didn’t put them off either, they all wanted to see me again. I arranged a second date with one. I probably shouldn’t have. I liked him. He was intelligent and well-read, and geeky in a good way, and hot in a geeky way, and, despite my sobriety, fuelled by three pints of strong lager and a couple of cocktails, he kissed me. I went home and cried because he wasn’t my ex. And then cried some more because I hated myself for being so pathetic.
Unfortunately for him, our second date ended up being on the day of my first scan. I’d found out that I didn’t have as many growing follicles as I’d hoped, and that they thought I had a cyst similar to the one that had nearly killed me seven years previously. I wasn’t exactly in the best frame of mind for a date. In fact I was miserable, on the verge of tears, not particularly talkative and could only offer the explanation that I’d had a bad day and not being able to have a glass of wine to take the edge off it was pissing me off.
I bailed early, insisted on paying for dinner to make up for being such a bitch (he said I hadn’t been which only made me feel like even more of a cow) and said that in the unlikely event that he wanted to see me again, might I suggest we did it once I was drinking again.
Incredibly he did want to see me again. But, after two bottles of wine, that night ended with me calling one of my best friends, J, from the loo of the restaurant we were in…
Me: All the booze in the world is not going to make me fancy this man.
J: Can’t you just get really drunk and shag him?
Me: I’d rather go home and have a wank, I think I’d hate myself less in the morning.
J: Really? Fair enough.
I’m not sure what the moral of this story is. Maybe it’s that not drinking doesn’t actually make you less attractive to the opposite sex; maybe it’s that if a man really likes you, he’ll put up with you being a cow on a second date, and still want to see you again; maybe it’s that as you can’t stay constantly drunk in life, it’s probably worth finding someone you don’t have to get drunk to fancy.
Whatever the moral, this time I’ve decided that any dates are going to have to wait for a couple of weeks. It’s probably safer all round.