My Love/Hate Relationship with Online Dating…part two

3 Feb

When I wrote this for CNN (that sounds SO official but it’s an iReport and anybody can write them) I had to cut it because it got very long. I didn’t realize how much I wanted to spill my guts to the world about online dating. Of course, everybody is different, but I wanted to share my experiences and thoughts on the whole thing.

I have had a profile on OKCupid off an on for a little over a year. The first time I was really just curious about who (or what) was out there. I don’t think I got ANY messages because I was timid about it and I didn’t even include a picture and I think the profile itself had 4 sentences.  I deactivated pretty quickly and swore that I would not do that again.

I DID do that again. This time, I was much more confident about the whole thing and I checked out a book from the library to help me write my profile. OKCupid has some open-ended questions for your profile and they also suggest you answer a series of multiple choice questions. The answers to your questions are used to match you with prospective mates, dates, whatever.

I have met a few men in person and gone on a few dates. I HONESTLY cannot remember the order of the dates I went on, regarding who I met first. I can tell you in the mix is a  librarian, a comedian (waiter), an  unemployed news director, and a construction worker.  I can also tell you that the comedian was not funny in the least, the unemployed news director ‘forgot’ his wallet on our date (he also ‘forgot’ to mention that he WAS unemployed, and didn’t have a car until we were on the date and he asked for a ride home). As for the librarian, I consider him a friend and I actually dated the construction worker for about 5 months until he broke things off, immediately moved in with a girl he met at Best Buy who then forged his name on some of his checks she made out to herself. After this happened, we tried the ‘friend’ route,  but I quickly realized he was kind of an idiot and I was not interested in being his friend. Sigh.

As of right now, my profile is still up and for some reason I have experienced a huge surge in messages I am receiving. I honestly thought for a bit that the construction worker I dated had put my profile up somewhere. Why he would do this is not something I thought about. I do not know why I am receiving so many messages. I double checked my profile and it looks fine. Nobody hacked into it and added under my interests ‘sucking golf balls through garden hoses’ or put that one of the 6 things I cannot live without is ‘sex’.

Sex brings me to the next observation. I receive a lot of messages from 20 something year old men looking for someone to be a ‘cougar’ to them. I am not judgmental in the least, that is just not my bag. I did laugh when one 20 something sent me a message (that sounded very much like a commercial for himself) and told me that he is ‘ferocious’ in bed. I was 20 once, and having sex with other 20 year olds, ‘ferocious’ is NOT the word I would use. ‘Quick’, ‘clueless’, and  ‘confused’ comes to mind, but not ‘ferocious’. Hopefully I have not offended my huge following of 20 something year old males.

I put together a little bulleted list of my personal do’s and dont’s of online dating. Who doesn’t like bulleted lists?

  • DO put up pictures from this decade. Cell phones have made it insanely easy for all of us to document every aspect of our daily lives. Surely you could take a break from posting your lunch on Facebook to take a quick picture of yourself to accompany your profile. None of us are supermodels out here. Just a quick picture of your face. Not you lifting weights, not you wearing your biking outfit (SERIOUSLY, nobody looks good in spandex. NOBODY), not you with an ex girlfriend with her face blocked out (tacky).
  • DO be CLOTHED in your picture. I see a profile with just abs or some shirtless guy I swear to the heaven’s above, I can practically smell vinegar and water because it reeks of douchiness.
  • DON’T send me a message that is literally one word ‘yo’, or ‘sexy’. I don’t even answer those. Anymore.
  • DON’T forget, this is your journey. You’re the star of your online dating movie. It’s all about you. Got it? Don’t be a bitch, but don’t feel like you have to answer every shirtless dude who writes you ‘yo’, unless that’s your thing then have at it. Not my particular thing. Anymore.
  • DO have a thick skin. Why let some guy get under your skin because you message him but he doesn’t respond? His loss. NEXT.
  • DON’T forget to have fun. This should be fun. If you meet 15 men and go on 5 dates and end up with 1 friend, those odds are pretty damn good.
  • DO be safe about online dating. If you decide to meet someone in person meet in a public place and tell everybody you know about where that place is. Maybe not everybody you know, but at least one or two people should know. It’s better to be safe than chopped up and put in somebody’s freezer.

I think the most important thing about online dating, or life, is to know yourself and your boundaries. If you’re okay with a casual relationship with no strings, then that’s fine. If you’re hoping to get married within the next 3 years, that’s fine too…though I would not suggest sharing that on the first date.

12 Responses to “My Love/Hate Relationship with Online Dating…part two”

  1. pattypetal February 3, 2013 at 4:53 pm #

    Well done, funny and not bad on the educational front.

  2. John P. Gavin - Author February 4, 2013 at 6:49 pm #

    Oh do I have a book for you…

    And a book for you to review if you’d like.

    You can glimpse it here: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B009ZYYDVE

    Let me know if you’re interested Amy.

    Love your post by the way – very funny and very true.

    Oh, and don’t message the guy first, ’cause then he thinks he has the upper hand – if you stay a little aloof we’re more likely to chase.

    We’re kinda simple like that…

    John

    • Amy February 4, 2013 at 7:05 pm #

      Hi John,

      I would absolutely love to read your book and review it. Thanks!

      Boy do I know what you’re saying about messaging a guy first. I have stopped doing that and I am getting more messages than I ever have.

      Hopefully you get this reply, I am still rather new to this side of things. I’ve had the blog for a while but it was private until recently.

      Thank you again,

      Amy

      • John P. Gavin - Author February 4, 2013 at 7:16 pm #

        Got it.

        I think I saw an email address on your blog – I’ll send you a note there.

        Oh, and we’re chasers by nature.

        You have dog racing in Florida, right? So look at it this way:

        What if, when the gates opened, the hare ran toward the greyhounds?

        Dang, I think I just heavily implied we’re dogs…

        John

  3. Janene February 16, 2013 at 8:09 pm #

    Yo! Great article. My past experience ran through my head. You nailed it. Very funny…yet sad. In a funny way. 🙂

    • Amy February 18, 2013 at 12:31 am #

      Thanks so much for reading! And yes, I know just what you mean when you say funny…yet sad…in a funny way 🙂

  4. davepiperno February 21, 2013 at 3:37 pm #

    Very witty…very true…FYI: I met my current partner via online dating. So that is one strike against it. Just kidding.

    • Amy February 21, 2013 at 7:04 pm #

      HA! Thank you and thanks for reading and for adding the ‘just kidding’. I thought you were a total jerk before getting to that part. Just kidding. 🙂

      • davepiperno February 21, 2013 at 11:15 pm #

        He is actually a very sweet man who never reads blogs…so it was safe to write that. Oh, and you don’t have to be kidding. Sometimes I speak w/o thinking. I blame it on the ADHD, but it is just bad breeding. =)

      • Amy February 21, 2013 at 11:47 pm #

        OH smart man 🙂 And yes…I blame my lack of, we’ll call it a ‘filter’, on many things but really, I’m just kind of nutty.

  5. Karen Anderson March 2, 2013 at 12:23 am #

    When I signed up on OK Cupid, I didn’t use a photo. Just posted a description of myself and my interests. Of the first five men who contacted me, four turned out to be husbands or significant others of women I know. Well, THAT was awkward.

    • Amy March 4, 2013 at 4:26 pm #

      Oh wow…yes, awkward to say the least.

      Thanks for reading 🙂

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