The Tel Aviv Dating Diaries

One olah hadasha navigates the Tel Aviv dating scene.

By ILANA MEHLMAN
October 2, 2019 19:58
2 minute read.
The Tel Aviv Dating Diaries

‘SEXY THINGS, I guess’: An offending text exchange.. (photo credit: Courtesy)

Well, I’ve been in Israel for almost two years now, and my heart has begun to harden. I came in all doe-eyed and excited, thinking “Now’s the time – I’m going to meet my Nice Jewish Boy!”

Boy, I was wrong.

So now, I’ve decided that it’s time to share my horror stories with the world.

It all began in September 2017. I had just moved to Bat Yam to teach English on one-year program in Israel. I figured I’d check out the Israeli dating app scene and honestly, that was probably my first mistake.

I downloaded Tinder and began swiping.

Right, left, right, right… it became almost like a game. And then an hour later, I got a notification: “You have a new match!”
I check it out, and he was probably one of the best-looking guys I’ve ever seen.

“Hey, how are you?” I ask and looking back, his response should’ve been my first warning.

“Oh, hey cutie. I’m great! How are you?”

The conversation continues for about a day before he asks if we “can meet on the beach with a bottle of wine” later that night.
I respond and suggested grabbing ice cream or meeting at a bar. He then informed me that he’s not interested in meeting at a public restaurant.

“Babe, listen. We will go for a 15-minute walk on the beach and then have sex.” I was completely floored. The first thought was “Wait, what? Does that actually work?”

So being the blunt American that I am, I asked exactly that.

He said, “Well after 15 minutes you know if you want to bang, so why wait?”

I said, “Enticing offer, but I think I’ll pass.”

After this lovely interaction, I assumed that this guy was an anomaly and most men didn’t act this way.

Well I’m here, two years later, to tell you this interaction was NOT an anomaly and this is typical behavior of many different Israeli – and more specifically – Tel Avivian men.

As the year continued, I became more cynical and asked my friends about their experiences. It always went the same way:
Girl meets boy on Bumble/Tinder/JSwipe. Over text, the boy seems nice enough, and then BAM! He asks: “Want to have sex?” It’s almost like clockwork. They rope you in and then do a complete 180.

And I’m sure there are a lot of very respectful and nice guys out there. But this wouldn’t be an entertaining story if I told you my dating life was all sunshine and rainbows.

Now, I have to point out that there’s a reason men think this is an acceptable way to treat women. And unfortunately, it’s because there are a lot of women who say, “Yes!” immediately when confronted with sex.

I am definitely not here to slut-shame anyone because let’s be real, who doesn’t like sex? But, these women seem to be ruining everyone else’s chances at finding their “one true love.”

Or are they? I honestly don’t know the answer to this question. My question for you to ponder until next time is, “Are the girls who are just looking for a one-time fling really the reason no guy in Tel Aviv wants to settle down OR would it be the same even if every girl said no?”


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