Online dating dilemmas

Navigating the online dating scene can become an overwhelming situation; this articles will help steer you in the right direction.

There are a few common scenarios that many online daters eventually experience, and each one can seem like a stumbling block, impeding the way to a happier, brighter love life. The most common experience—and often one of the first—is the impulse sign up period; you browse a couple promising profiles that catch your interest, and you can’t help but to rush and sign up, posting a first draft profile. The second most common experience is that moment of first contact, but you’re unsure of how to proceed, or that if you should take down your profile entirely. And then there’s that online dating overload sensation, a feeling of burn out. We can help; follow our advice for a more enjoyable online dating adventure.

New Profile
Ok, I’ve just created a new profile, and I’m ready to meet new people, but how do I proceed? What do I do?

So you’ve just signed up and are ready to take the online dating world by storm. You may be tempted to contact a multitude of people—anyone with blue eyes or within a decent driving distance; this “spam” approach to online dating is a bad move. This desperate approach really won’t get you very far in the online dating world. Pick five to six people and see if anyone of them works out; if not, move on to several more. Don’t overwhelm yourself, casting out a big dating net, seeing if someone bites—you’re not on a race against time. Take it easy my friend; have fun and enjoy yourself.

It’s always wise to keep your dating prospects to a manageable number. You don’t want to become disorganized, mixing up profiles, confusing and tangling interests, hobbies and turnoffs with a myriad of individuals. Is Susie the one who likes combining rocky road with strawberry ice cream, or is she the one who dislikes rainy days? Is it Brad or Steven who would rather curl up with a good mystery novel than watch a Lakers game? I can’t remember! Keeping notes is a good way to manage all your contacts; you don’t want them thinking that you have a hundred people in your dating queue. Don’t give them the wrong impression.

By reading a few emails, it’s very common for people to believe that they’ve found their true soul mate. Every word that person writes in their email strikes a romantic chord, and you can’t seem to find a single flaw—they’re perfect! Don’t build up your expectations too high; you’ve only just passed the first of many stages. After then initial email exchanges, start with a few friendly phone chats. Get to know the person on an intellectual level; you may soon discover that your potential hook up doesn’t quite fit the image you had in your mind, and this could save you a lot of wasted energy. Three weeks is a good amount of time before you’re ready for the next level—the first in-person meeting!

Our connection is perfect; we’re getting serious. What do I do now?

Taking down the profile
There comes a time when you ask yourself “is it time to take down my profile?” You’ve found your prefect match and now you’re wondering about your profile floating around in dating wonderland. The essential question is basically this: “is this the only person I want to see?” If the answer is yes, then you should have no reservations about taking down your profile. You may be tempted to wait for the other person to take down their profile first, taking that as a sign to reciprocate their good intentions. It’s up to you. The best course would be to just take down your profile when you feel the time is right, and don’t even tell the other person; chances are they’ll see that you have and will ask you about it.
Don’t torture yourself by incessantly checking your newly found sweetheart’s profile, crossing your fingers, hoping that it has been taken down for good. Avoid this—if you find yourself constantly performing repetitive profile checks, go do something else; watch TV, read a book, exercise—anything to avoid the urge to spy. If you simply can’t stop the nagging urges, there’s a simple solution: just ask!

Resist the notion of raising a guilt trip, claiming that since you’ve taken your profile down, it’s high time that they do the same. And don’t perform the grade school antic of “if you don’t take it down, I don’t want to see you anymore”. For starters, simply state that you feel a nice connection with them; ask them if they are ready to date you exclusively. If your potential lover says no, then you’ll have to decide if you can live with that person keeping their “options open”, so to speak. Often, confidence is a major turn on—it greatly amplifies your adventurous, outgoing personality; if they don’t want to take down their profile just yet, you way want to reply with something like: “Well, that’s cool with me, but I don’t think you’ll find another catch like me anywhere else.”

Dating Overload
I’m experiencing dating overload; am I becoming jaded towards online dating?

It’s often a good idea to take a hiatus from the online social scene—take breaks for reflection and to replenish your spirit. Scrolling through the profiles of hundreds of potential mates can become tiresome, and you may even feel like giving up the search all together. The best advice is not to give up. The jaded feelings that are swirling around inside your head are—like all things in life—temporary. Go offline and take a break from your computer. Don’t check back until a couple weeks have passed; you need time to rejuvenate—you’ll be glad you did.

Once you get back into the mix, you’ll need to perform an analysis of what went wrong the last time you were sweetheart hunting. What are you doing that needs improvement? Are you asking for dates too soon? Do you have a picture up on your profile?

Like everything in life, excess in anything is never a good idea. Limiting the amount of time you spend online can be very beneficial—long bouts of searching is sure to make your eyes bulge and your head pop. Always give yourself some time to rest your head and eyes. Step away for a few hours—during this window of time new people may have signed up, boosting your excitement and chances of finding that special someone.

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