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Online dating is the pits right now. Maybe it’s because it’s February. Generally speaking, both OKC and Bumble have been ghost towns. The quiet is deafening.

And, until yesterday, the dudes I was exchanging messages with were duds. Dud dudes.

I was supposed to have a 1st date last night but canceled last weekend because he was either socially awkward or just downright rude (I’m betting rude). We didn’t really exchange many messages at all. The first time he messaged me on OKC, it was simply to ask if I was free to meet him for a spur-of-the-moment drink as he was driving through San Francisco on his way home. I of course said no. I was in for the night – it was 10 pm! So then he said he was free to meet up Monday-Thursdays on the nights he didn’t have custody of his kids. I told him that Wednesdays work for me. A couple days later he responded with “Great, let’s meet at 7:30 then. You pick the place.”

I thought this was all rather strange and abrupt… and I was worried about his lag time in responding. Would he even see this before Wednesday? Should I assume he’ll be where I suggest at the time he agreed to? I messaged him, “Are you still available on Wednesday at 7:30? I think I can swing that. How about we meet at xxx (brewery near me)?” I expected him to respond in a timely manner with the standard “Yes, sounds great. See you there.” Nope.

A day or two later, he responded with, “Ok. You don’t flake once you commit, right? I’ve had that happen recently. Once bitten twice shy.”

I was pissed. He was basically calling me a flake. Oh hell no.

I responded with, “I understand your concern but I find the tone of your message rude. No, I don’t flake. I am not free on Wednesday night.”

Then I blocked him.

After Colombian Hottie tried in vain to meet up with me last week and I told him the weekend would be better, I didn’t hear from him again. Until Sunday night. Figures. When he checked in with me, I asked him how his weekend was going. I told him that I had been enjoying a quiet weekend to myself. He said, “Me too.” I was irritated. I replied, “I told you I was free this weekend. When you didn’t want to make plans, I assumed you were busy.” His response: a sad emoticon. That’s it. WTF.

I am pretty sure The Blond Mandarin made an inappropriate sexual comment regarding my daughter’s age. I am beyond livid. Either he is sick or he was trying to be funny (I sure didn’t find it amusing). Neither of us has texted since. If he does reach out again, however unlikely, I am going to tell him to never contact me again. It is inexcusable.

Amid all this ridiculousness, I have had a recent promising conversation with one Bumble dude. We were really connecting and he was considerate and sweet. I had a good feeling about him. When I told him what I was ideally looking for a relationship, he said he was looking for the same… but that even though he isn’t sure he wants kids, he can’t rule it out as a possibility and feels it would be cheating himself if he didn’t at least explore that. That said, he told me he finds me incredibly attractive and senses a strong connection. I appreciated his honesty. I told him I wasn’t sure how we should proceed being that I was interested in him and wanted to get to know him better while also realizing that a relationship was unlikely.

We both took some time to think about it then decided that we did ultimately want to meet each other.

Stupid? Reasonable? I don’t know. Would you meet someone knowing that it likely wouldn’t ultimately lead to a relationship? Neither of us are interested in casual sex.

No 1st date is set, though.

Hayden came over on Monday night. I was agitated because I hadn’t heard from him all week, then he sent an oddly brief text Monday morning that simply said, “Can I still come over tonight?” No hi or how are you.Β  I responded with, “Yes, of course. Are you ok? I didn’t hear from you on Thursday night.”

He replied that he’s okay and was sorry he didn’t call. When asked what time we should expect him, he said 7:30. Hmm. His arrival time is getting later and later. Two weeks prior, it was 7:00. (When we were still seeing each other, he used to come over right after work and arrive around 6:00 or 6:30.)

I figured it was because he had an errand to run or simply didn’t want to engage in small talk before The Bachelor started.

We gave each other a hug when he arrived. Despite his recent application of cologne, I could have sworn I detected the scent of alcohol on him. Smelling of cologne wasn’t new – he typically reapplied it before arriving – but now I wonder if it was because he was trying to cover up the alcohol smell.

Thankfully, he didn’t bring alcohol with him this time and, since I’m on the wagon, I didn’t have any wine or beer to offer him. We drank ruby red grapefruit spritzers instead. We had time for about 10 minutes of chit-chat; he was vague. I asked him how his week had gone. He said he was busy at work and that he’s dealing with a lot of stuff lately. Later, during a commercial break, I asked him what he meant by “dealing with a lot of stuff” and he completely brushed it off. Sigh. He’s a brick wall.

I now truly believe Hayden is an alcoholic. Knowing he has a history of alcohol abuse, everything I was concerned about in the past makes sense with this new perspective: his resistance to traveling, his resistance to me seeing where he lives, his resistance to spending weekends together, and his absence of friends.

He has always been guarded and a bit secretive. What else has he hidden from me?

He had an excuse for everything. I no longer believe he broke up with me because he wants kids someday; I think it was because we were getting too close and, as a result, he wouldn’t be able to hide his abuse much longer.

Our relationship was perhaps a lie. I’ve come to the sad realization that I don’t know who he really is. Would he be a different person without alcohol?

I am considering sending him a link to free outpatient substance abuse programs in San Francisco but don’t want to be presumptuous and, besides, what if I’m wrong? I don’t have any proof and I also don’t have any experience with this. However, all signs point to a problem.

He plans to come over again on Monday. It might be the last time I see him. Now that he is closing himself off so significantly, what’s the point of staying friends? But I also don’t want to shut the door on him in case he needs a friend. What a dilemma.