The Time I Matched With My Friend’s Ex

I’m notorious for having a bad track record when it comes to dating. I’ve never found success in being asked out on a date, let alone finding a boyfriend. With every guy I’ve found attractive, the end result is one of two things:

  1. they’re not interested in going out with me.

Despite my romantic woes, I periodically like to go along with the times and create profiles on various dating apps. I meticulously choose photos, attempt to write a witty bio to showcase my personality and think of hobbies that make me look attractive to the opposite sex. It becomes an obsession — what can I do to both entice a bunch of men yet still be myself and hold to my standards?

It was during one of these infrequent spurts when I found myself matching on JSwipe (otherwise known as Jewish Tinder) with someone who I thought was a cute guy. Good looking, went to a good college, etc. He seemed to have a lot of qualities that I look for in a potential life partner. It was so unexpected, due to my never-ending bad luck. Who knew that little old me could find one hot guy and he’d mutually swipe right too? I couldn’t believe it.

But something deep inside me felt that this was too good to be true. His name seemed eerily familiar, but I couldn’t place from where I’d know it. His facial structure and picture looked similar to a guy that one of my close friends dated our senior year of college. They were together for three months, and although I never met him, I remember her talking about how lucky she was that she found an amazing guy that supported her dreams. But he dumped her out of the blue, with no reasons to justify why the break-up was necessary.

Long story short: he broke her heart and after finding his Facebook profile and confirming it was him, I realized that I had just matched with my close friend’s ex.

After the initial shock of my discovery (which in truth only lasted for a couple of seconds, but it felt like a decent amount of time), this led me to that space one finds between a rock and a hard place. On the one hand, it felt like I had a small taste of good luck with this one match. It wasn’t like I had even started a conversation with him — it was just the elation I felt that someone could possibly be interested in what I had to say and potentially saw beauty within me. On the other hand, I had heard of what this guy had done to my friend. He broke her down and she had to change and rebuild her entire mindset towards the opposite sex after the break-up.

Then another thing hit me, probably harder than the other two scenarios: was my matching with this guy on JSwipe breaking some sort of girl code that I wasn’t aware of?

Now I’m a huge believer in girl code. In my world, it’s like what Brooke Davis says on One Tree Hill: “hoes over bros.” I am such a stickler for the girl code that I once texted a friend of mine when I made plans to hang out with her ex so that she wouldn’t be alarmed if she came across seeing us alone together, despite knowing him first. It might seem crazy to some, but to me, your girls are the ones that are going to tell it to you straight when you need them to. They’re the ones that have your back when it feels like no one else does. Besides that — no girl wants to get into fights with their closest friends over any guy. Let’s just say that the end result isn’t pretty.

After ruminating about this (as I tend to do when it comes to those closest to me), I came to the conclusion that even though he’s attractive and he could potentially be the one for me, my five-year friendship was more valuable than my five-second glance at a dating profile. My friend was important to me, and in recent months, she’d become one of my closest confidantes. I knew that even if I told her that I was interested in him, and even if she said that it would be alright to take a chance on him, there would be some sort of betrayal deep down that would fray the camaraderie that flowed so easily between us over the years of knowing each other. I couldn’t risk losing that.

So with confidence, I clicked delete and my match was gone from my life forever.

Looking on it after the fact, I don’t regret this decision. In fact, it made for a really funny discussion when I mentioned this whole scenario to my friend during one of our monthly coffee catch-ups (#worklifeproblems). Despite this whole incident, I’m confident that I’ll find someone who will be perfect for me — it just doesn’t have to be at my friend’s expense.

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