Readers sometimes share their Charlotte dating stories with us. Here’s one of them, as told to the editor:
Shelly, 32, had been living in Charlotte for just over a year and was “completely unimpressed” with the local dating scene, until she met Paul, 35, a potential “Mr. Right.”
Shelly had tried to meet someone who was age appropriate, fun to be around, and treated her well, but her efforts were unsuccessful.
“All the men here were either too old, too young or too married,” she said, “but Paul seemed different.”
They’d met through a family member of Shelly’s who only had good things to say about Paul.
Initially, Shelly was hesitant, but after a first date at a local wine bar with live jazz and conversation, she decided to give Paul a chance. She was impressed with his taste in outings and, as far as first dates went, he had exceeded her expectations.
One date became “a few” and before long, an outing with Paul was part of Shelly’s weekly schedule.
The two had a lot in common. They debated topics, talked popular culture, shared an interest in wine and even enjoyed the same music.
Plus, Paul was a “true gentleman” in Shelly’s eyes. He opened every door, paid for every meal, even made her walk on the inside of the sidewalk. He was also a great listener, always interested in hearing how Shelly’s day was or what she was thinking at the moment.
Shelly enjoyed spending time with him.
‘Until you see how they live’
“But I felt like things were just too good to be true. And they were,” Shelly said.
After a few months of casually dating and getting to know one another, Shelly decided it was time to take things to the next level.
“I had to see how he lived. You don’t really know a person until you see how they live,” she said.
They scheduled a movie night at Paul’s house, and Shelly said she was happy to find a “normal” home. It appeared to be clean, was not cluttered and presented zero red flags.
At some point during the movie, Shelly went to use the bathroom and couldn’t remember which door led there.
She found herself in a master bedroom that felt “too cozy.”
“Like a woman lives here” sort of cozy, she recalled. “It smelled really nice, it was decorated, had a bunch of pillows on the bed. It just had a woman’s touch.”
Shelly admitted that instead of leaving to find the bathroom, she snooped.
She went into the closet and was mortified. She found it filled on one side with women’s clothes and the other half with men’s. It was clear to Shelly that a woman lived there.
“I ran out of that room so fast and went off on him. I cursed his [expletive] out, grabbed my stuff and left,” she said.
The audacity of ‘Mr. Right’
Paul tried for days to get in touch with Shelly. He called her, sent several messages and even sent roses to her workplace.
Then, after about three weeks of ignoring Paul, Shelly gave in and responded to one of his messages.
“I don’t mess with married men. Leave me alone,” she texted him.
Paul responded almost immediately: “I am NOT married,” he typed. “We’re engaged, but I don’t think we’re getting married.”
Shelly says she was astounded by his audacity. She never responded.
Instead, she blocked his number, along with each of his social profiles, and never spoke to him again.
“Dating in Charlotte is like when people go dumpster diving,” she said. “Of course it’s trash, but you hope you find something valuable. You don’t, though. You just find trash.”
The names of both parties have been changed, at request, to protect their anonymity.
If you have a Charlotte dating story — whether good, bad, or in between — we want to hear it. Send it to us at firstname.lastname@example.org with “Datin’ Charlotte” as the subject line.