What is Dbag Dating To You?


Ever since I was a kid, the last few weeks of summer have been a period of extreme inner turbulence for me. In my childhood bedroom in Saint-Petersburg there are journals that describe my annual anxiety over la rentrée, accompanied by strategies on how I plan on becoming the most popular girl in class and finally understand chemistry (#goals). As an adult, I have often chosen this time to roll out the next life step – a new job, a move to or from Paris, even the launch of this blog almost four years back. Somehow, September always feels like an opportunity to change something important, to start fresh, to do more.

This September I don’t have any grand Life Changes lined up. After a tumultuous, eye-opening year of dealing with personal changes and observing the that world we live in, the transitions I’m experiencing are happening below the surface. They relate to the way I think, the people I want to be surrounded with, the impact I want to have. They also involve the things I want to write about. As hard as it is to believe, configuring subtle strategies on getting French men to shower no longer fits the bill.

Don’t get me wrong – I love Dbag Dating. In the list of cool crazy ideas I have had, I consider starting this blog to be high up there, somewhere between impulsively buying a puppy and moving to France. Initially launched as a fun little outlet to express my Parisian dating woes, it is this very project that has shifted my career, given me a cathartic way to work though my personal issues, and an invaluable opportunity to connect with people all over the world.

For those very reasons, Dbag Dating isn’t going anywhere, at least not for now. It’s my baby and you don’t get rid of babies when they hit an awkward teen stage, or identity crisis. (Even if you do occasionally wonder if you screwed them up for good by giving them a weird name.) However, you may want to stop for a minute and consider what kind of adults they are becoming.

Since it takes as village to raise a child, why don’t we decide on this together? After all, the reason I’m so adamant about preserving this platform is because of the readers that come here from all over the world, from places so remote that I wonder if my Google Analytics is just f*cking with me. (Bhutan? Gibraltar? Really?!!) 

So tell me, my dear Bhutanese readers (and others too!), why do you visit this site? Is it because dating misery has you looking for company? Do you come here looking for actual dating advice? (Because we all know I ain’t got none!) Or maybe just to get some comic relief from a crazy oversharing Russki?

What have been your favorite posts? What kind of content do you want to see more of? Do you want more dating stories, the OG bread and butter of this blog, perhaps submitted by other readers? Personal essays on self-acceptance and self-actualization? (Eye roll please – but we all kinda need them.) Interviews and Sunday Kind of Love features? Reflections on dating across the globe? French stories? Russian stories? Nudes? (JK!) Or maybe articles that have nothing to do with dating whatsoever?

Something tells me that, if we put our heads together, we can make this blog better, more interesting for me to write and for you guys to read. (Did I mention that I love contributors?!)

So skip down to the Comments section and TALK TO ME! Think of this as a September Issue brainstorm and me as your Russian-American Anna Wintour.


    • Yay! Have one of those coming up next month. They take a crazy amount of time to produce but always worth it.

  • OG dating stories/”guides” – whether by you (love your hilarious + honest writing style) or guest writers…and Sunday Kind of Love!

  • I originally came here for your dating stories, as I found your try-anything-once but also I-have-clear-self-worth attitude really relatable. I’ve stayed for the personal introspective essays. Your reflections on getting older, on living a genuine life, and on the meaning of singledom and relationships have been really inspiring and encouraging for me. I also really enjoy how you don’t shy away from your cultural heritage. Basically, whatever you write, as long as you stay true to your opinions and feelings, you’ll have a reader in me. So find what inspires you and people will continue to connect with it!

    • That’s really valuable – thank you Dunja! I think I may just be blocked because all the silly fun little topics listings feel redundant and boring, and yet I don’t want to bore people with long pondering spiels about world injustice and the importance of humanity.. but maybe I should try! And presenting it in a fun and relatable way could be the next challenge!
      (Yes I just had a mini-brainstorm so thanks for inspiring that!)

  • Hi Marina,

    I’d love more dating stories (mostly because I can relate to them) I’d love to be able to contribute 🙂

  • Your blog has been one of my favorites. I broke up of a long relationship (5 years!) and have found your blog comforting. I originally discovered you from Vogue. Not every man is meant to be your soul mate but what the heck it’s always worth to have good time!
    Ps can you sometime make a guide to Indian men? Or have you dated any? I recently went to a few dates with one and the experience was rather interesting. In any case I hope you keep writing.

    • Hi Sanni! I think you summed up the initial manifesto of Dbag Dating perfectly – thank you for that!
      I hope you feel better – breakups are the pits of human experiences. I actually started it right out of a long relationship myself and I have to say that it was pretty cathartic. If you ever want to contribute lmk!
      Indian men – hmm let me see what I can do! A friend of mine is Indian and I believe she may have dated a couple, perhaps she can write one up for me. What was your experience like?
      x Marina

  • Hey Marina, I keep on reading your blog for two reasons: first of all I love your writing style, I think it’s so unique and funny and honest and I just love reading it! Second of all, as someone who is also a fairly decent human being who just keeps on meeting DBs 😉 its nice to be able to laugh at , reflect about, sympathise with people who are going through similar circumstances. Makes me feel less like underneath my clothes my entire body is covered in scales, as Bridget Jones once said 😂

    • Ahh thank you – and I love your writing as well! (FYI, the Aussie post is coming up really soon for sure!)
      Thanks so much for the vote of confidence and for actually reassuring me right back that I am not the only one meeting the crazies.. Because sometimes I think it’s just me and that I just f*cked myself over with this blog.. But then I get a comment like that and it makes sense all over again!

  • personal growth stories sharing 🙂 i loved all the more personal, less ironic more vulnerable pieces with a little life affirming summaries 🙂 like your last one!

  • Marina!!
    I love this blog/website in totality because it never fails to make me laugh, but also because it reminds me to keep trying, even if just for the story. I agree with everyone who said they want to see more of the Sunday Kind of Love features as well!

  • You are so funny!!! And honest and have a refreshing voice 🙂

    Would you consider being featured on my online zine for women living ‘ze international life’?

  • I absolutely adore your dating stories. As a 26-year-old woman, and first-generation American raised by a stoic Soviet mom (similar to yourself), I am constantly finding myself tangled in webs that involve your typical narcissists, sociopaths, and general douchebaggery (ghosting and benching, anyone?). It’s a strange world out there, and it’s so nice when you can just relate to someone who is experiencing the same sort of existential “Who am I?” crisis while also trying to navigate the torturous waters of modern-day dating.

    I would love to contribute, if you’re ever interested in getting new material from your readers. Keep on keepin’ on. 🙂

  • Dear Marina,

    DBAG Dating is one of the few Blogs i keep coming back to. Why? I love your style of writing which is funny, clever, real and never boring. I´m also a huge fan of “Sunday kind of love” which i always find truly inspiring. The peaces that really stick to me are always the ones that are more personal, the ones that are more introspective and serious (but you still manage to keep it light like your “It´s not that easy for anybody” article which stayed with me for quite a while.)
    Also, it is inevitable that some subjects just don´t resonate with us anymore after couple of years. i´m sure that no matter what you´ll be writing about in the future, it will always contain your unique Marina stile that we all visit your blog for. I wish you all the best moving forward, whereever your heart and mind takes you. With this blog and with everything else! Warm greetings from Cologne, Germany! Carina

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