dating after divorce: flirting by texting

My first date after over 15 years was lovely (click here for details). We talked until they closed the place down. When we left, I had to practically dump my purse on the sidewalk to find my keys, but my date was patient. She walked me to my car and said goodnight, awkwardly, sweetly. I was a little nervous and unsure how to actually end the date, but then I found a parking ticket on my car, and that broke the tension. Off we went.

She was right behind me at a red light moments later and texted me that I was beautiful. The awkwardness was gone. What was a little too hard to say in person was not so hard to tap on a small screen. Texting – an aphrodisiac. Leaving the date I was curious, but by date number two, I was hooked.

I took my kids camping with friends the weekend after the date. I was headed to the beach with a bunch of kids to fish, and a text came in, “When you lost your keys I thought I might melt. You were so cute acting all nervous and dropping things all over the sidewalk.” Butterflies in my stomach. Later, “The first moment I saw you, you stood up to wave me over, and I caught my breath. You were more beautiful than your pictures.” My knees went weak. Who knew texting could be so intoxicating? OK, so maybe she knew, but I had no idea. I felt I was the only one in the world who had ever experienced this.

I was in over my head, trying to remain objective but finding myself swooning over her words. I’m a reader and writer of poetry, and clearly a sucker for the written word. With texting, the written word can come fast and furious. I had never been the type to fall quickly, but here I was stumbling over the abyss with each text. I felt just like a teenager.

Technology found her for me, so why not let it lead me to falling in love? Let me tell you why. Because texting was creating a fantasy, not actually getting us to know each other. I only get that now, years after the crash and burn. I did not know how to navigate this new territory, and I was not careful.

Lesson learned? Who knows. There is nothing like an early flirt coming into your phone when you are intrigued and curious. I am a solid believer in texting someone within 24 hours of that first date to say that you enjoyed meeting them. Do this whether you wish to go out with them again or not, and use it as an opportunity to clarify. If you do… offer something a little sweet. A little flirt, just enough to test the waters. See what you get back. After all, texting is so much easier than calling; it makes it possible for even the shyest to take a risk. Why not take a chance? What if you could makes someone’s knees weak with just a few taps on a screen?