Attention Men On Dating Apps: I Didn't Come Here To Make Friends

I’ve had a few conversations with fellow divorced people or people recently out of relationships in my time on the apps. Something that comes up a bit too frequently is that I get a very clear friendzone vibe when we start to bond over our breakups. 

For example, with one guy, he’d told me the reasons for his dissolution of marriage and asked me for mine. I knew it was breaking the rules, even though I’m new to this and would love to think there are no rules. But he showed me his so I showed him mine. Mine…is a doozy. He was nice about it. I knew I freaked him out, though. 

The conversation continued via text but did seem to center on “single life” and the nitty gritty of his becoming single. He’s nice enough. He’s also, clearly, just not that into me, at this time at least. I sat with it for a minute. I worked through my initial feelings of having my greatest insecurities about myself, that I’m unattractive and unlovable, feel true. Then I metaphorically slapped myself in the face and got over it. His not wanting to date me has to do with him, not me. 

I wrote myself a form letter to use in case of friendzone. Feel free to steal it. 

Dear sir or madam,

I don’t want a platonic divorce friend. I have friends. 

As much as I’d love to be there for you and wish I was good enough to be your breakup buddy, I can’t do it. I’ve been single long enough now that I’ve done the work to get myself willing to trust someone enough to date. But I can’t take you on. 

You don’t want me as a friend to complain about your breakup with, anyway. Mine was worse. I win at divorce. You’ll feel bad venting to me because I’ve been through worse than you have, and it won’t feel good to tell me your problems. Find someone who already loves you and tell them how hurt you are. I’ve found people step up when you ask for help. 

I wish you the best in all your endeavors.

Full disclosure: Be prepared to be ghosted.

I’m a bit much, my sister tells me. She says I’m kinda loud and that I tried to drown her as a child. (I did no such thing.) But I am a bit much. I do talk too much and sing too often. I have no game. I have no chill. I have no filter. I play no games (except board and card). I am myself. Not much I can do about it.

If you don’t like how I look, I am not very able to change that. If you don’t like how I think, I would never want to. If you can’t take on my piles and piles of shit, I won’t fault you for it. But, I can’t carry yours and mine, too. I am not the voice of wisdom because I have been there and back again. I have had my mind spun around in space and now I need a safe, reliable group of people around me. I messaged you because I wanted to date you. For fun.

I have many friends. Most of them are named Jessica. Some of them are named Sara(h). Two of them are Kristi, two more are Heather, and there’s a slew of one-offs like Morgan, Gillian, Amber, Kate, Annie, etc etc. 

I even have friends who are boys. Some of them are spouses of Jessicas etc. Some of them are solo. 

They all HATE my ex, so they’re really fun to talk to about this stuff. I don’t want to tell the whole story to someone new if I have perfectly good friends who know me and have known me and know why I’m feeling this way and how to help me. 

I hang out with all of them. I have sex with none of them. That’s why I’m on the apps. 

But, of course, not just that. 

This is not America’s next top best friend. I didn’t come here to make friends. I didn’t come here to find a sex buddy, either. While my kids are off on their weekends with their dad, having adventures and living their lives, I want to spend time with someone fun who makes me feel good about myself. I also want to spend time with my friends, many of whom will be vaccinated soon and ready to hang. I’ve missed them. My friends have been really taking care of me and I’m ready to take care of them again.  

So, to any prospective suitors out there, NO. I do not want to be your breakup buddy. 

Image: Guille Faingold / Stocksy

Laura Wheatman Hill
Laura Wheatman Hill
Laura Wheatman Hill lives in Portland, Oregon with her two children. She blogs about parenting, writes about everything, and teaches English and drama when not living in an apocalyptic dystopia. Her work has appeared on Parents, JSTOR Daily, Parent Map, She Knows, and others.You can find her at and on Twitter @lwheatma