Online Dating as a Millennial Hijabi – Another Day, Another Swipe

hijabi dating minder minderella

Now, where were we? Ah yes, looking for Amir Charming. Today, a guy who lists his occupation as ‘future business owner’ graces my iPhone Xs max super retina display. Now if that isn’t code for ‘unemployed’, I don’t know what is. If I update my profile to say ‘future Victoria’s Secret Model’, does that make me Tyra Banks? A for effort bro; if you believe, you can achieve. 

I’m not quite sure what exactly I was expecting using Minder but what I can tell you is if you think the guys are going to be any more respectful simply because this is an app designed for Muslims, then you’re in for some disappointment. Guys are out here asking what kind of pancakes you want to eat off their thighs? I’m all for multitasking but that sounds weirdly uncomfortable and also not quite hygienic. The struggle is real. 

Trigger warning: the next paragraph contains scenes of a cringeworthy nature. 

Opening line: ‘excuse me beautiful I think you dropped something babe…my jaw’. 
The confidence, the balls, the bravado. Everything about this line makes me want to throw up. 
‘Straight in there with the cheese’, I respond. 
‘I’m very cheesy, dripping with this thick gooey stuff [the rest of this sentence has been censored so as not to ruin your day]’

Hold up. Wait a minute. What is happening right now? Have I just walked into the opening scene of a very sad, very cliched, amateur porno? I push through, trying to spare us both the embarrassment of acknowledging that line. 

‘I see on your profile you’re an AC/DC fan, gutted I never got to see them live’. 
‘Yeah I am. Do you like it hardcore?’. 
We’re only two lines in and already I feel like I need a shower. Although, by the sounds of it this guy was the one in need of a cold shower. 
‘And this was going so well.’
‘I meant hardcore metal rock.’ Of course you did. I play along. 
‘Oh, right. I was gonna say, at least buy a girl dinner first.’ 
‘Let’s go right now, I’ll take you home afterwards.’

Come on man, I keep throwing you lifelines here and yet you seem insistent on making yourself look like a complete douchebag. 

Ultimately we’re all looking for someone with the right haram to halal ratio, am I right?

Susan al-safadi on dating

No judgement here, I believe religion is a personal thing and your spiritual relationship is none of my concern, but the following really got me, mostly because it was unsolicited. 
‘I’m not very religious, I just want to put that out there. I sleep around, pray sometimes and observe fasting religiously’. 
‘OK’, I respond, ‘well I’m fairly religious, pray 5 times a day and wear a hijab. I just want to put that out there…’ I persevere in the hopes of finding a normal conversation. ‘What are your hobbies and interests?’
I like punk rock, I’m a movie buff, also I’m into loads of kinky stuff, almost everything deviant. What about you? What fetishes and role plays are you into?’ I’ll spare you the gory details of the rest of his question. 

Please imagine my face as the blinking man meme right now. I wish I was making this up, but you honestly can’t write this stuff. Leave him on read. The next day he picks up the conversation again. He asks about my day. I reply bluntly and ask how his went. ‘I slept the whole day and then started watching porn.’

Leave him on read, again. The next day he picks up the conversation, again. He asks about my day. I reply bluntly and ask how his went. It’s a bit like Groundhog Day at this point. 
‘Missing someone in my bed. So, you didn’t tell me exactly how crazy you are when it comes to sex. I just want to know how deviant you are.’

I’m tapping out now. I feel like I’ve afforded this guy way too many opportunities to redeem himself. I am not a prude by any means, but it’s not attractive to ask someone these kinds of questions 5 minutes into knowing them. It makes you look like a horny teenager and I can promise you it won’t end up with us walking down the aisle together. So, another one bites the dust. 

We messaged for a couple of days and ended up having a phone call and talked into the night, which weirdly, wasn’t weird at all. How refreshing to have met someone who seemed perfectly normal and wasn’t a catfish? So, back to this phone call; my flirting game was on point. I was giving this conversation some of my best material; joke, after joke after joke. Reflecting on the conversation the next day, I wasn’t sure if I had enjoyed it because of his company or my own (to be fair I think it was my fire banter that did it). Sure, it was a good discussion, but in hindsight it was clear I was falling in love with myself and not him. 

The next day we spoke again. During the conversation we talked about what we both did for a living and when I explained I work in clinical research, he proceeded to ask me what my thoughts on pharma were. Now this was an odd question; I didn’t realise pharma was something you could be for or against (for the record I am for). I gave a preamble to my opinion nonetheless and he gave a cryptic response. I laughed and said, ‘you sound like an anti-vaxxer‘, to which I was met with a deafening silence. ‘Oh god, you are an anti-vaxxer‘, I said. ‘You could say that‘, he responded.

I was shocked. Apologies to any anti-vaxxers out there reading this, but who in 2020, our age, with the race for a COVID vaccine ongoing during a global pandemic, is anti-vaccinations? Several  friends of mine likened this to speaking with someone who still believed the Earth was flat. He said when he was 10 he decided he didn’t need vaccinations anymore (bruh, who are you playing like you had control over your vaccination status at the age of 10) because, and I quote, he ‘was never around people who had polio or TB‘. Yeah, you know why? ‘CAUSE THEIR PARENTS HAD THE GOOD SENSE TO VACCINATE THEM. Dude, come on. Wake up and smell the hummus. 

Naturally, I ended things there and then. So, I suppose my question is, was I too harsh? Could he have been ‘the one that got away’? And if not, am I giving off chump vibes or what? Do I look like a fool? Excuse me? Are you looking at me? Did you rub my lamp? Did you wake me up? Did you bring me here? And all of a sudden, you’re walking out on me?

So unfortunately, this fairy tale ends with Minderella still searching for Prince Amir Charming. Accepting all the ‘3o2bali’s until next week at least. 

By Susan Al-Safadi

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