Real stories about dating and relationships in New York City. Truth is more interesting than fiction.

5 Things I Love About Being Single & Dating in New York City

I know, I know – I’ve used this blog on more than one occasion to vent about how difficult it can be for a woman (especially a woman in her late 30s) to date in .  And it is hard.

There are, by anyone’s count, more women that men here(although there is some debate as to the actual numbers – see the comments on this link) and a general sense that women in New York are, well, expendable.  That if a guy meets someone who isn’t his perfect, ideal woman he should just get rid of her and find someone better.  The logic being that there are so many amazing women (and so many of them are single and having trouble meeting a decent guy) here that he’d have no trouble getting someone better.

There have even been several times when I’ve considered moving primarily because of how difficult it is to date here.  Friends who’ve moved to other places and then quickly met someone and got married have tried to lure me with promises of easy living, low rent and bars full of great single men.  But I’ve stayed because I love New York.  It’s my home and love it despite its faults.

And over the years, even though I may vent about the difficulties every one and a while, I’ve learned to love here, too.  That’s right, there are things to love about being a single woman in New York. And since it’s Friday I sat down and came up with a list of 5.

5 Things I Love About Being A Single Woman & Dating in New York City

  1. It’s perfectly acceptable to eat alone in a nice restaurant. I used to travel sometimes for work and I almost always ate at the bar.  There’s something weird, in most parts of the country, about sitting at a restaurant table alone and having a good meal.   Whereas, in NYC, it’s pretty common.  In fact, I met a guy this way once.  I was feeling blue and so treated myself to lunch at one of my favorite .  And he was sitting at the next table, also eating alone.  He was cute and he thought I was cute and by the end of our meal we’d exchanged business cards.  I would have enjoyed my meal just as much if I’d eaten in silence (awesome food), btw.
  2. The rules are that there are no rules. I don’t care what anyone says about dating in New York, there are no rules.  Things that make perfect sense in other places just don’t work here.  People come here from all over the world, with different sets of beliefs and expectations.  All of us, no matter how much a person might feel the need to hold on to some code of behavior, are just muddling through. My inner anarchist finds this exhilarating.
  3. Dating in NYC means going to some of the most spectacular museums, restaurants and clubs in the world.  I know this is going to sound really snobby, but I’d so much rather have a second date at the than at Applebees.
  4. There are always more fish in the sea.  Sometimes NYC feels like heaven.  But lucky for us, we don’t have to actually date those losers (we don’t have to date at all, but that’s another post).  For every douchebag there’s a decent fellow out there, just waiting to buy a girl a drink.
  5. NYC is home to some of the most interesting men in the world. In the past decade I’ve dated a composer, an expert on international development, an art gallery owner, a hedge fund officer, assorted project managers and techies/programmers of random varieties, guys with Ph.D.s in topics I barely understood, a music producer, several small business owners/entrepreneurs, an actor or two, a musician or two (or three), a tv producer, a journalist and a couple of teachers.  Oh, and then there were a few lawyers and a couple of doctors and the stand up comedian(maybe I should stop, now).  They came from so many different states and countries it would make my head spin to try to remember them all.  And most of them (because this is something I’m attracted to) had travelled widely and spoke at least one language other than their native tongue.  Like I said, interesting.

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9 to “5 Things I Love About Being Single & Dating in New York City”

  1. calamari says:

    LOL!! What do you mean? Applebees and the MOMA are practically the same place. 😉

  2. aguy says:

    This is slightly off-topic, but I posted that comment in the other post about the city’s gender ratio. In NYC proper, the ratio is there’s 9 men for every 10 women. But in general that’s because while more boys are born than girls, women live longer and begin outnumbering men around their 40s.
    HOWEVER looking at population figures is not really relevant because most of us would not date our cab driver from Morocco or maid from Ecuador. Most of us want to date people who are our equals as far as education, socioeconomic status, attractiveness and so on. (Many are also not that open to interracial dating, although i know you’ve said you are SG).
    Even in Manhattan, according to the 2007 American Community Survey:
    * only 57% of pop over 25 has a bachelor’s degree or higher
    * 16% didn’t finish high school
    * 18% speak English less than “very well”
    * 48.8% of the population is white, 13.7% black, 10.7% Asian and 24.7% is Hispanic or Latino
    Basically for most of us the pool of “dateable” people is much much smaller than the general population. And alas there’s no population figures for the gender ratio of graduates of moderate or better colleges with stable jobs and no criminal records. Also the dating pools for men and women are very different (men tend to date younger women, women date older; a guy with an elite job is I think far more likely to date an unaccomplished younger woman; etc.) so it’s impossible to say which gender has it “better” or easier in nyc.

  3. Jack Stratton says:

    A someone who has been dating for a few years straight I’ll say that dating in NYC is amazing. I never thought it would be, but since I threw myself into the who dating pool I have been shocked at how many amazing people I have met, how many fun and interesting dates I’ve been on and how much ridiculously good sex there is to be had out there.

  4. Simone Grant says:

    :-) I probably shouldn’t harsh on Applebees. I’ve only ever been to one once or twice. I’m sure they’re lovely.
    Like I said, the demographics are up for debate. Although, as to your assertion that most of us want to date “our equals” – I know a couple of married couples where one partner is a well educated, white US citizen and the other is a recent immigrant with a lesser education. These really aren’t that rare. And as a woman who’s been dating in this town for 17 yrs I can tell you, whether or not there’s a demographic difference, it sure feels that way.
    -Jack Stratton
    It does defy expectations, doesn’t it? Kinda nice when that happens.

  5. calamari says:

    hahaha!! Well they both have stuff hanging on the walls. I think the similarities end there. :)

  6. queenieNYC says:

    I hear you on number 1, but I kinda LIKE eating at the bar when I’m alone, or with one other friend. I always meet interesting people, and usually get at least one drink bought for me by the bartender. Saving on booze, FTW!

  7. American Girl says:

    I love your post! Being single gives you the freedom to engage in different activities and flirt to someone you like.

  8. Simone Grant says:

    I love the way you think. I like sitting at the bar for dinner- sometimes. But sometimes I just want to sit and be quiet and most bartenders, in my experience, feel obligated to make polite chit-chat with lone diners. If I’m in the mood for quiet I prefer to eat at a table. I guess I get kind of anti-social sometimes.
    -American Girl
    Thanks so much and welcome to the blog.

  9. imhere says:

    I’m BI and not sure if it’s proper to leave a message here. Any bi or bi-curious out there? If yes, you can find me on ***Biloves***dotcom.