Internet or Online Dating has rapidly gone from being in the shadows, almost like porn on the web, to acceptance and extraordinary success and consumer acceptance.
From just a few websites that offered such a service, there is now an industry of competing websites, often with very specific targets, though the “Big Guys” like Match.com and eHarmony.com (who claim hundreds of marriages a day from their site) still dominate.
Which site you choose and why will be the subject of another post. Here you’ll find simple tips for those of you already on a dating site or those contemplating taking the plunge.
Before I tell you how I met my wife, here are ten simple, non-gender specific dating tips. Let’s call this Internet Dating 101:
1. If there’s no photo, there’s a reason. Move on.
2. Be patient. It’s a numbers game. Therefore, hang in there.
3. Don’t spend too much time e-mailing and chatting. If you feel there might be some chemistry, set up a meeting. First meeting is coffee only. Don’t make elaborate plans. If you like each other, there’s plenty of time for that. Also, if they’re too busy or it’s too difficult to schedule something, move on.
4. Don’t believe what you read. Be skeptical, but open. Most women lie about their age and weight; most men about their income and height.
5. Tell the truth about yourself — period, end of issue, no excuse.
6. Be clear on what you want and express it in your profile. Don’t be afraid to tell the truth. For example, if you’re a woman and you just don’t like men with thinning hair, save him and you the waste of time by being clear about that in your profile. For a guy, if height or weight is important to you in a woman, be honest about it.
7. While I tend to diss self-help books, the book “He’s Really Not Into You” had some plain truths. If there are signs of disinterest, he or she is disinterested. And, often, it has nothing to do with you. Move on.
8. Men and women, over 35 or so, if never married, are often trouble. Not just the men. Women who have never married are as set in their ways as men, and (I’m going to get killed for this) probably more hung up on their careers.
9. Always, if you’re a woman, meet in a public place and only give out your cell number, if you don’t call the guy yourself first (which is better).
10. Be patient and don’t take it personally.
I met my wife the way I’ve described above, by sending her an e-mail, based on her attractive photo and profile. She claimed to read every one of the thousands of e-mail messages that she received, plus mine also made her laugh. We set up a coffee date. I completely forgot about our meeting! Yup, I forgot, leaving her stood-up and thinking what I jerk I was.
When I realized my horrific mistake, I called. She took the call with the full intention of blowing me off. The degree of my mea culpa won her over. She said that the fact that I had kids made her think my mind might have been temporarily made of mush. We set a second date.
The rest another time, but suffice it to say, the second date was successful enough for a third — and more. We were married on December 27, 2008.