Online Dating Tips, Boundaries, Lessons Learned & Types of Relationships
A little over 2 years ago, i joined my first online dating site. My reason for joining THAT dating site and no other is because the site stated that the men on the site were expected to financially help out their chosen partner. Let me explain further the concept of being financially supportive towards the partner that you are choosing to date. In MY opinion, communicating with a man who would like to "date" me (in most cases just wants to have sex and move on), texting, phone calls, vesting my time and energy into a man who may or may not eventually end up as a possible date becomes exhausting, VERY quickly. As Warren Buffett states, money is not the most valuable commodity, time is. While some are men have adopted an entitlement attitude about their constant texting and calling, taking up valuable time from a woman's day, the men on this dating website are SUPPOSED to understand that women's time, women's attention and women's affections have VALUE. Other dating sites, traditional dating sites, have women taking time out of their busy schedules to make time for texting, calls and emails. They also make even more time to get ready and spend money on make up, blow outs, fashionable out fits and jewelry, spend money on transportation and may have the cost of a babysitter as well, just to go and have coffee or meet with a guy. Somehow, all of this effort, time and INVESTMENT on the woman's part is dismissed by some men. Women are EXPECTED to put this much investment into a first meet with a man, while he has invested a few calls and a few texts? The pinnacle of all of the woman's time, energy and money invested, into meeting just one guy, for just one date may culminate with one of the "modern" type of men who ask for the bill to go dutch, "while they are getting to know each other". I do not know at what point feminism became what it is now. I do not know how a concept of allowing women the vote and to not be treated like just another piece of property turned into women being completely disregarded as a valuable human being all over again. In my opinion, "the feminist movement" has placed women in a role where they now give all of their time, their energy and their resources to a "modern" man. This thinking strips every single feminine quality to the beauty of courtship and dating. To be clear, courtship is not for the woman's benefit, it is for the man's. A man who feels the need to court a woman will invest properly in her well being. A man who behaves in an entitled manner will wait for women to provide for him. This type of man will have a much different perspective of his partner. I have understood these concepts all too well and are the reason why i was 38, almost 39 years old, the first time i finally joined an online dating site. The dating site explicitly detailed that men are looking to be mentors and financial supporters of their chosen dating partner. FINALLY, a dating site that resonated with me. After creating my account and uploading very poor quality selfies, I was flooded with messages. FLOODED. As i quickly set up face to face dates, I barely made it thru 5 before deciding that a new strategy was needed. These 5 coffee dates allowed me to realize that I was a guppie in a sea of sharks! In the beginning i did not mind men fibbing about their age, their income, or their lifestyle. I genuinely just wanted to meet some new people and get my feet wet in the dating pool again after being single for so many years. After man #5 showed up to the coffee shop, I made the decision to immediately rethink my strategy. This last man approached my table and sat down. I said hello and attempted to be polite to a man being so forward with me. I get hit on frequently, but this man was being beyond confident. After a few minutes of speaking and introductions, i looked at my watch and looked at the door. The man became angry and in a spiteful and hateful tone with a scrunched up face said to me, "Is your next date almost here? I've only had 10 minutes of your time!"
This is when i realized that this grey haired, bald, elderly man with glasses, who looked approximately 65 years old was the man that i was supposed to meet. His profile said he was 45.
Because of his abusive tone i immediately stood up. As i reached for my keys in my purse I said, "We agreed to a quick coffee meet. We have achieved that. As i explained in my email, prior to meeting, i have an appointment to go to." Without wanting to shake his hand, i took out my purse, lap top bag and my cell and walked out. He didn't even offer to buy me coffee and he didn't buy a coffee for himself either. This situation opened my eyes to the need of being more careful. I was meeting strangers after all. My wish to continue on the site prompted me to create a vetting process before I accepted another date again. My analytical brain went to work. I made a list of goals. I made a list of desired qualities and I also made a fake man's account. Once i logged in as a man, i browsed thru the profiles of the women available in my area. I read their profiles, their pictures, their communication style and their profile bios. I took note and decided to book an appointment with a professional photographer. (This was 2+ years ago.) After my photo shoot session, i choose my best pictures. I then wrote a lengthy bio with all of my qualities and wrote an extensive bio of what i was looking for in a man. I also paid for a membership. Most of the women in that area were non paying members. Immediately, the emails poured in again. Within a week's time i realized that i either worked or i read and answered all of my dating emails. Work is non-negotiable. Another strategy had to evolve. I went back and looked at my interactions with men. Of course there was a pattern. Men who sent private picture requests and NO email ended up being a complete waste of time. Men who were attempting to contact me, with their 'free' messages, thru an unpaid membership, were also just looking to waste my time with endless emails, endless texting and never ending male-demanding needs. To ease my message load, anyone who sent me a blank message with a private picture request, was and continues to be immediately blocked. Anyone who does not have a paid membership and is sending me constant free messages, is also blocked. This vetting process helped me weed out a large portion of the HUGE amount of emails that i was receiving. Because the incoming messages were still very time consuming, i looked for more ways to weed out men i had no interest in getting to know on a romantic level. They may be wonderful men and i would probably enjoy working with them or enjoy having a friendship with them, but the paid membership was meant to find a suitable dating partner, and not friends. My next step was to change my profile to state "Politically, I consider myself a staunch conservative." Boom! My messages immediately decreased to a manageable amount over night! I can now state that this dating site is 85-90% Democrat/Liberal. When i noticed the dramatic decrease in messages, I understood that i was on the wrong dating site. Early on in the membership process, I contacted the site's marketing department and ended up with a paid gig. A contract was emailed to me and i began to earn $20 per article that i wrote, submitted, and was published. My membership dues were being paid by this small writing gig. To this day, i continue my writing relationship with this dating site. I have however, decided to move on to 2 other online dating sites, which have more of the caliber of men that i am hoping to date. Fact is, 2 years later, my amazingly secret and fun dating site that i joined has changed. All things change. I continue to have my account with this site, but i am not a paying member anymore. About one month ago, i decided to join 2 other online dating sites, that are more geared towards my dating preferences. These sites have more "commitment-minded" men. Learning my prior lessons, this time, i only uploaded professional pictures, with just a few cute selfies. Both of these sites require a substantial monthly investment and they both required that i prove that i was the woman in the pictures. Interesting! In my prior site, anyone could take anyone's pictures and attempt to pass off as the woman in the pictures. Not these new sites. I had to prove, in several ways that i was indeed the woman in the pictures. By now, and with a few years of online dating experience under my belt, i again sat down and wrote down my goals, the man I would like to have as my partner and i wrote 2 new bios. Two very different bios for each site. Now, before I answer a man's message on these sites, here is my list of requirements. 1. Free accounts: Messages Deleted 2. Private Picture Requests: BLOCKED 3. One-Word Messages: 1 week before i respond. If they are still around, I respond. 4. Nice, Cute Message: Respond within 3-5 days. 5. LENGTHY messages with personal information about them and include information specific about my profile: I respond within 2-3 days, WITH MY NUMBER. Now, before I even choose to respond to a man's message online, TWO years of experience have taught me that answering a message is a vetting process of its own. If a man moves on to the next woman during those days that he is waiting for me to respond, chances are that our values will not match up. If a man patiently waits and politely responds to my communication with interest, then, chances are THAT man is actually interested in me. Other factors that I look at while answering emails are: sentence structure of emails, content and tone. Dating nowadays can be a mystery if you do not equip yourself with the right information. The purpose of this blog post is to educate some of you on the points that have helped me, with the hope that yo too will benefit from my experiences. (And it was requested by one of my amazing clients.) To wrap up this post, here are some more basic vetting advice. Once the communication has begun, an entire new set of goals begins. Each goal is meant to weed out men who have been clever enough to make it thru my first vetting process. This next vetting process includes considering the types of texts that he sends me. How fast he responds to my communication. If i schedule a time to speak, does he call on time? If he doesn't keep the scheduled time, he is blocked from further communication. If he texts that he's going to call and doesn't call, he is immediately blocked. If he has NO clue who I am during our conversations or has to repeatedly ask me what my screen name was on the website. They are also blocked. ANY form of abusive language or "jealous" type of commentary is a red flag for me, which will result in blocking as well. In conclusion, once i began applying this vetting process, the filtering of messages and HUGE quantity of men was easily funneled into a manageable amount of men, for me to text, talk and email with. This vetting process is meant for someone who is dating online with the hopes of finding a suitable, long term, healthy relationship. Many on the online dating sites are on the sites looking for "one night dates." Others may be looking for more "transactional" types of short-term hook ups. I created this vetting process to be able to discard these types of men in order to find the few quality men on the sites looking for stable, healthy, long term relationships. Hope that this blog helps you on your dating journey! Leave me a comment with your thoughts or your online dating experience.
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