• Friday, April 19, 2024


The ick and how to deal with it

By: Priya Mulji

HAVING been single for quite a while now, I thought it was time to venture into the dating pool. If you read my column regularly, I’m sure you’ll have heard me say this a million times, but, ‘here we go again’!

Dating in your forties is a weird thing. You no longer have any tolerance for anything that isn’t 100 per cent suited to you and the smallest things just give you an instant ick.

The urban dictionary describes the ick as ‘something someone does that is an instant turn-off, making you instantly hate the idea of being with them romantically.’

The dates I have recently been on have certainly given me the ick. The smallest thing that a guy says or does can be a huge turn-off, including elements from the past I might have overlooked, or not noticed. Single friends my age also feel the same.

My experiences with getting the ick started recently when I had a date with a guy who just could not stay quiet for even one minute. It wasn’t a two-way conversation; he revealed everything about himself, but asked nothing about me. He actually said that he ‘liked to be the centre of attention’ and wanted ‘everyone to look at him when he entered a room.’

Another guy I had a date with moaned about everything and didn’t like anything. He didn’t like dogs, going on holidays to the beach, or watching films in the cinema, among other things. All he liked was football. What was the point of being on the date, I had asked myself? This guy, who was 38, had also been single since university, so it said a lot. Other times the ick has kicked in when having conversations on dating apps – taking too long to reply, or asking which caste I am. It’s 2024, surely that doesn’t matter?

But, why do we get the ick and are we just being too critical or picky? There was nothing inherently wrong with these guys. Was I just being super picky, I had asked myself after the dates and conversations. Is it just an excuse because I’d rather be with my ex? What I quickly realised was that these were red flags for me and it was nothing to do with being picky.

I want to meet someone who will walk into a room with me, hold my hand and make sure I am comfortable. I want someone who I can go to the beach and watch the sunset with. It’s okay to want to be able to have someone to share the things you enjoy with. The right person won’t give you the ick and the smallest idiosyncrasies will be adorable and endearing.

And don’t forget, you might have done something to give another person the ick. I never heard from the two guys I mentioned earlier in the column and am not mad about it. I hope they find their forever person.

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