If you are single today, you know there are many ways to find love. With technology comes the ease of finding your One True Love, and you get the great pleasure of sifting through thousands of profiles of potential dates that you would not normally come across in your own social circles.
Mind you, this may not necessarily be a good thing. Think of it in terms of the old saying "finding a needle in a haystack." Well, that haystack just got a hell of a lot bigger and someone used moldy, stinky hay to build it. While the dating pool may have gotten bigger, that does not mean that it has gotten any easier. In fact, just the opposite is true.
I have tried a few dating sites. Match, Plenty of Fish, OKCupid, eHarmony and a few I no longer remember. All have yielded the same result: plenty of attractive women with great sounding profiles. Yet, no matter how charming I am – and I can be pretty damn charming with my words – I have yet to find that one special girl who will pluck me out of this ever-growing, ever-dirtier pool that we are forced to swim in.
Never dipped your toes in? Well, while there are great people out there looking for love who are completely honest about who they are. There are plenty of stories about nightmarish experiences, from being picked up by your date…and his mother, to finding out you are dating the Online Dating Strangler. While this is no laughing matter, there are plenty of stories to laugh and cringe at and also to learn from.
A friend of mine is using Bumble to meet eligible bachelors in her area. One such encounter she shared with me happened a few weeks ago. She met her date at a local hangout for a drink, with the potential for more.
This is the best way to meet someone you originally met online. DO NOT plan a full evening out for the first meet up. In fact, don't consider this a date at all. Would you plan a full evening with your worst enemy? No matter how well you get along online, there is no guarantee you will feel the same when you finally meet in person. Plan for one drink, and that's it. If they have a problem with that, run away.
This first part of the evening went fine for my friend, with plenty of good conversation and light flirting. All good things. So she decided to extend the date further, and they headed to another spot for more drinks while watching a local band. After a few more drinks and flirting, things escalated slightly with some inappropriate touching. She stopped him, explaining why that kind of touching was not really appropriate at a public venue. He then proceeded to pout for 45 minutes.
Feeling up a woman at a bar, restaurant, concert hall, park or any other public area on a first date is not acceptable. Also, don't pout when you don't get your way. It's unattractive, and a sure-fire way not to get a second date.
Towards the end of the night, my friend decided it was time to go, so they took an Uber back to their cars. She informed him that she would not be going back to his place and he proceeded to pout some more, whispering to her, "Trust. You have to have trust in my line of work." Her response, "Comfort. You have to feel comfortable to go home with someone after five hours of knowing them." He was silent the rest of the ride home, which luckily for her was not that long.
We have all been there: met someone at a bar, hit it off and ended up spending the night together. This does not work for online dating! No first date should ever end up at a person's house, and it should not be expected. Clearly, this is what he wanted. When he didn't get what he wanted, he acted like a child and tried to pressure her into going home with him.
Navigating the online dating waters can be treacherous. There are so many things to watch out for that it will scare off many, and there are enough bad stories out there that I could write several books. Be diligent, be careful and try not to take it too seriously.