Monday, September 08, 2008

Dating Online is okay..... if....

I know a lot of people are hesitate about the online dating thing. I had several reasons why I did it. The first is that I just don't go out much. I did the "club" scene years ago and it is just isn't for me now. Even if I went this route, I don't think this is a good way to get to know someone. They are there for a hook up, not a meaningful relationship of any type. The very few that might be there for that, get caught up in the "meat market" effect of these places.

Second my only other choice was to meet people are work. Hmmm, yeah, soo not going to happen. It is almost ALWAYS a bad idea to date someone at work. Been there, done that.

I also went to school online and I have friends online. To me it just made sense that I find someone online.

So online I went. With my mind open and not to take everyone for who they put out there.

When writing your profile, think about the words you use. If you say, "I want someone who is affectionate." Guys might read it as you are easy. Instead say exactly what you mean, "I like to hold hands." Some single parents wonder is it okay to say I have kids, YES! Do not surprise someone with this fact later. Honesty is the best policy. Do you really want to be with someone who doesn't like kids? Also give just enough information about yourself to get some one's attention, but not too much that they have nothing left to find out about you.

Then when you put pics of yourself up, ladies, if you put a shot of cleavage, who do you think will be looking at your profile? Guys looking for someone easy. Think about it? You may have great boobs but let that not be your opener. Do put updated pics of yourself. Do put normal pics of yourself on there. It is up to you whether these pics include your children or not, but I didn't include mine. I wasn't looking for another father for them, just a friend for me! So why should I have their pictures up there?

Then as you start to browse and receive emails, keep an open mind but also stick to your instincts. If there seemed to be a red flag in their story, I took it serious. Also Google is your friend. Find out as much about the person (or people) you are talking to. And if you can or have a friend that can do a background check, do it! I know it sounds bad but you have to protect yourself and if you are a single parent like me, you have to protect your kids. Do your homework.

Then take your time getting to know this person and when it is time to meet him (or her), meet at a public place and let other people know where you are going and what you are doing. Then call as soon as you have left. If it doesn't work, there are tons of others out there.

Another tip, try different sites. There are tons of them out there. Be on more than one at a time. Makes sense, huh? Don't get frustrated or discouraged. It does take some time to find someone worth the time. There are just so many people out there that you can find someone that will like you and you will like.

Anyway, I know online dating isn't for everyone. But it can be fun.


trappedintime said...

Did I get googled? Did you find any good stuff on me?

Karen said...

Good tips Erica. Unfortunately us parents are having to teach these to our children younger and younger these days - dating aside, I'm already warning my 9 year old son about the dangers of giving too much away. Me? I give just enough to let them know I'm friendly but no more!

TxGambit said...

Baby, you got googled, searched and then some.... Just had to get that last name! ;) Nothing good so you must be safe. ha, ha... Right?

Karen, Yes! I have had the same talks. Especially the group you and I are in, having gone to some of those trips. How do I explain to the kids that I can go? That I have done checks to make sure that who I was meeting was who I expect to meet. Not a serial killer.

Ms. Single Mama said...

Fantastic tips. I go back and forth about dating online. Depends on my mood but it can definitely be fun.

Another tip - meet on a lunch break for coffee - prevents a long committed evening with each other.

Rich Single Momma said...

I appreciate your tips. I've done my share of online dating at various sites. I've made a couple of friends but I've found that the standard dating sites leave much to be desired.

If you want to narrow your focus try I know it's sounds crazy, but it's effective. It's also specific to your city (not good if you there is not a great presence where you live).

I think the key is really, really understanding/knowing who you are and who will be compatible to you. Then you can write an ad that will attract the kind of person you are looking for.

It worked for me and I am now engaged to an incredible man. Just my two cents ;-).