Dating Terms: Lions & Tigers & Unicorns, Oh My!
Did you mean to be searching for a unicorn in dating?
One of the proverbial euphemistic sayings. Looking for a unicorn. It’s been around for a while now in Silicon Valley. Pretty difficult animals to source. I don’t recall ever seeing one myself.
Dating & Unicorns makes sense. I mean, it seems like so many singles are searching for them. Seeking their versions of the ideal.
The Dating Unicorn. Whoops!
Per the urban dictionary, “A common swinging term used in the community to refer to a single female interested in meeting other couples. Described as such due to the rarity of finding said females. By no means derogatory but quite the opposite, a rare treat.”
Apparently, I just stepped in it, once again. Whoops. Who knew? The term has evolved now, hasn’t it?
I’ve done this. Not poly, per se. But, I certainly have used the wrong word or phrase on numerous occasions. Even with the title of one of my blogs.
There’s a prize to the first 5 people who spot the erroneous blog title.
Not too long ago, I thought poly was lipstick on the term “swingers,” but I’ve come to understand, appreciate and believe that, not only does it exist, but, it is real. Albeit, I think most people who claim they are poly really are not and are just playing the field. They think they are poly. They probably don’t even know what they are or are not. Thinking they are cool or hot or sexy or something. Lots of them are simply relationship novices. Late bloomers, finally sexually active, & keeping things light. It’s fine. It’s just the wrong term. One of my pet peeves.
The List of all the Dating Terms You Need to Know
A Comprehensive List of Every Dating Term You Need to Know in 2018 by Taylor Andrews & Lisa Katz
I didn’t want to rewrite the glossary of dating terms. There are so many great articles on that. However, I get questions on them all the time. So, here are just a few for your dating enjoyment.
Dangling Participles. This is one that I conjured up & often use. Not the literal English term. It’s the exes that are still on the back burner. They may be so far off the burner that you aren’t even aware they exist. But, they are there. Lurking on the sidelines. Why? These are the ties that are never completely cut (really, out of fear of being alone). Like umbilical cords. I was oblivious to this when I was single in my 20s. But, virtually everyone had them when I was single in my 40s. It’s not everyone you ever dated. It may just be one person. The one that is way out there on the periphery, but still ever so remotely, present.
I can still recall when I was single the first time someone IM’d me and called me a MILF. I was like, “Say what?”
So many acronyms. Who can keep up with ‘em?
Benching. Just like in sports. You’re on the bench. You’ve gone on out with someone. You like them. They keep texting you but don’t asking you out again. You’re on the bench, a back up.
Breadcrumbing. It’s when someone keeps in touch via texts & likes, but nothing seems to manifest into dates.
Catch and Release. Commitment-phobes, “Fishermen” are people who like the chase. When they hook the fish, they toss them back. It’s the type who catch a big fish and throw it back in the water, hoping that if they keep fishing, they will catch another bigger, better one.
Ghosting. This really is nothing new. We just didn’t have a word for it before. You become amongst the disappeared.
My .02: If you’ve been ghosted, it’s usually about the other person. Likely, you haven’t done anything wrong. Probably, quite the opposite. It’s about them. They are scared. They probably liked you when they really shouldn’t have gotten involved. They aren’t/weren’t ready. They are with someone else. Or, they aren’t ready to date. They could be scared that it would have been real with you and they are unable to handle it.
Phubbing. It’s when you are with someone who gets sucked into their phone - on an app, texting, even watching games or sports scores. You may as well be solo. It’s bad form. I’ve done it. And it’s happened to me, too (that’s when I start playing my words with friends. And, I’m a badass). When I’m the offender, everyone gets really mad at me. Mea culpa.
The Slow Fade. This isn’t good. And it can really hurt. It’s when they are phazing you out. You are fading away into the sunset. Bye bye.
Submarining. It’s what we do with “Dangling Participles.” Like a sub. They surface and then submerge. You think you’ve been ghosted. Then, pretty much, boo. They reappear. They are back in your life. Then, poof. They sink and are gone again.
Stashing. You seem to be exclusively dating someone. Yet, you haven’t met anyone in their life, nor do they friend you on social media. You are stashed. You are on the down low. Low, being the key word. Be careful of these types. Do your due diligence.
Sapiosexual — A person who is attracted to intelligence. That’s me.
Gatsbying. So called, after The Great Gatsby, F Scott Fiztgerald. That’s when you post something (ie a selfie) specifically to solicit a response from a love interest.
Cushioning. Cushions, like, on a couch. They are there to cushion the blow if the relationship fails. Backups. Spares. Other people you are flirting with in case you break up with your partner.
Lovebombing. When a bae (God, I hate this term. bf or gf) or bae-prospect seems to go overboard with gifts & affection early on in dating. It can be manipulative, in a way to gain control.
My client & I were out at Rosewood. We ran into a friend. He left to pursue a hot woman who neither of us thought was an amateur. He left his phone on the table. His phone kept buzzing. I was ignoring it. Finally, my client took a look. The messages were from someone in the phone labelled “BAE.”
The Bae’d texted, “Are you at Rosewood?”
He’d replied, “Yes.”
She replied, “Fuck You.” Classic.
Caspering. Named after the friendly ghost. I always had an affinity for Casper because, I think Casper & Wendy had a little something something. And, I’m Wendy. Actually, Caspering is not ghosting at all. It’s when you tell someone how you feel about them when you are letting them go prior to disappearing from their lives. Caspering lets someone know where they stand.
As I said, I have a pet peeve about word choice. Maybe, it’s genetic. My father used to quote Supreme Court Justice Scalia about correcting an attorney who was presenting his case to the Supreme Court. According to my husband, attorneys generally are coached at the Supreme Court School in advance of presenting to the Supremes. Specifically, so they don’t blow it. Which makes sense. Even more embarrassing, when Scalia said to the lawyer, “…there is no such adjective as 'choate.'… the opposite of 'inchoate' is not 'choate'…”