I write this post somewhat in humor, but at the same time entirely serious. Dating with acne has led to some true horror stories. Below, I share one of my most cringe-worthy experiences to date.
I was twenty three when “Brad” picked me up one Saturday night. He had initially wanted to catch the sunset at a local beach, but I made up some excuse for why I couldn’t go out until the sun went down (that would be wayyy too much light on my face, I thought.) So we drove to a restaurant instead.
While he was driving, our conversations flowed naturally. I felt confident and excited. Then, when we got out of the car and walked into the restaurant he had chosen, my heart sunk. The lighting was like a dermatologist’s office: insanely bright. We sat down and I threw some words at Brad from behind the menu, trying to play it off like I was just really fascinated with the food choices. He didn’t seem to think anything of it.
As the dinner went on, he and I continued to talk about some of the conversations that had started in the car: my job, his job, our families, our hobbies, etc. I was having fun, and from the looks of it, so was he. And then, (because why not have something embarrassing happen on a first date?) as I went for another bite of soup, a bit dribbled down my chin, and a hastily wiped it away while Brad wasn’t looking. But, to my horror, it happened to land directly on a pimple I had concealed, and when I wiped away the food, I wiped away the makeup that concealed it. Crap.
To my horror, Brad looked up, and his eyes went from my gaze to my chin. I felt like someone had punched me in the stomach. Stay calm, I thought. It’s just a pimple. We carried on with dessert, talking easily through the night (aside from the fact that I couldn’t stop thinking about the giant red monster on my chin), and we eventually went back to the car. Brad was going to take me home, since I had to be up really early to go to work.
Overall, the night went really well, and I knew I wanted to see Brad again. As he walked me to my apartment, he leaned in to give me a kiss, and under my dim porch light, I saw his eyes widen. “Are you ok? You’re bleeding!” Huh? I thought. No I’m not. I feel fine. And just as I thought that, I felt a warm liquid drip down my chin. Kill. Me. Now.
I’m mumbled something like, “Ah, I’m going to go see what it is. Sorry. Call me. Let’s do this again.” And, without looking back, I jammed my key into my door and ran to the restroom, horrified.
A week went by before I had heard anything from Brad. Finally, I received a text saying, “Hey. I had a lot of fun the other night. I just want you to know that you don’t have to feel awkward about what happened. My little sister has acne and I know how that can go.” I guess I was supposed to feel comforted by this, but all I could think was, Your little sister?! The one you said was 14? You just compared me to someone who is almost ten years younger than me… who you’re related to? I replied with a “Thanks. Sorry about the other night. I had a lot of fun before that, though.”
Brad texted me a few times after that, and I responded. We never did go on another date, though. And, months later, I saw him in town with another girl. They looked to be in a legitimate relationship, and all I could think of was how that could have been me, had my chin waited just a bit longer to bleed. I say this all in humor, but I was mortified when it happened. And that’s just one of my DWA stories.