A few months ago I moved across the country.
When I figured out where the grocery store was and the fastest way to get to work, I reckoned I could handle a little dating action. I scrolled through my matches on yee-ol Tinder to makes sure I didn’t miss anyone. There was a dorky looking guy with dad jokes for pick up lines; I like dad jokes, so we met the next day for tacos and ended up hula-hooping seven hours later in the town square.
A few days later we’d meet for ice cream. We’d spend days texting, and nights swinging on the front porch lip singing to Adele. We’d share stories, popcorn, blankets, butterfly-kisses, and dreams. I fell hard.
He grew up as a southern baptist and became disinterested in faith during college. That rang true to my story too, so it didn’t scare me too far away. But, the more intimate our conversations - and cuddles - became, the more I grew frustrated that he wasn’t a believer.
So I tried not to care.
That is until the conversation about sex needed to happen. We’d grown more fond of each other every day in the few weeks, so my expectation in telling him this was that he would desire me more than sex, and agree to the wait. You can imagine my surprise when I heard his response:
“I respect that you want to wait. I’m not saying we wouldn’t ever get married, but if you need to wait I’m definitely gonna need to have sex with other people."
The first day without talking to him is how I imagine checking into rehab. The harder you try to not think about it, the more you do, and the more it hurts, and the crazier you feel.
So, despite him being very clear in his sexual expectations, and me in mine, we kept up conversation for another three weeks while I went back home. We had gotten so close so fast cutting him off was just a little too real. So I pretended that he didn’t say what he said and we kept on.
I trust my girlfriends enough to tell me the truth, so when I told them this story, they would tell me its very clear I should break things off. I knew it was wrong to be with someone out of loneliness. I knew I was slowly crossing my own boundaries. But I didn’t care. I knew my worth, I knew my dreams, I knew that he wasn’t God’s best for me, I just couldn’t get myself to care.
I prayed for the courage to take the heartbreak, and I got it.
I called him, apologized for being inconsistent, wished him well, and - in front of my friends - deleted his number. Not because I was mad at him, but because I didn’t trust myself to stay away.
If I can stay honest, the first day was hard. And the second.
It’s been just over a month, and I’m finally free to be honest, to be myself, to pray again, to thank my friends. Reader, Tinder was never the problem: I was. I wanted to play God. I know the plans I have for me, says no scripture.
I love love and covenant and fairytales, but as soon as I begin sacrificing my boundaries and convictions for the sake of romance, God will let me.
Not worth it.
I stopped using Tinder (read: all dating apps) to find a husband because I finally understand that I am not God.
I have good news:
Neither are you