Online dating is the practice of searching for a romantic or sexual partner on the Internet, typically via a dedicated website or social media platform. Many are still reluctant to use this form of “hunting” to find dates/lovers for very valid and life threatening reasons, but we can ignore them because love itself is life threating and so is finding it.
In my life time experience of asking girls out on the streets or online I’ve been lied to, given YoTV hotline numbers I’ve also received death threats because I’ve asked a girl out that’s already been taken. How much more dangerous can finding love be? Well it gets more dangerous with online dating with all this serial killers and human traffickers roaming the internet streets with parody accounts it’s hard to tell who is real and who is not.
So you’d somewhat understand why it’s hard to believe someone saying that they’ve found a wife/husband on the net, but that was evident when hashtag #WeMetOnTwitter trended on Valentine’s day. This was the platform for all relationships that were formed on Twitter to come out and flourish, more than a thousand relationships were formed worldwide on twitter alone how many more were formed on other platforms I’ll let you wonder but we also got to see people who were flabbergasted by this somewhat revelation that real people living real lives get to say I Love You and mean it to a person they meet online.
How did they safely find the one? It may be luck or simply well calculated steps, for those looking to enter the online dating scene here are some essential rules from a bestselling author(Gregory L. Jantz PH.D.) you may need when going out there:
Jettison any Cinderella or Prince Charming Visions.
Internet profiles are most often designed to present someone in a favorable, airbrushed light. Isn’t that what you tried to do when you created yours? Keep a tight grip on reality as you read through profiles, remembering the time-tested advice that if it looks too good to be true, it probably is.
Honesty is the Best Policy.
Don’t try to hide who you are. Deception is a terrible foundation upon which to build a relationship. Be honest and open. Use current, up-to-date pictures, not the snapshot that wedding five years ago that miraculously made you look 3 inches taller and 10 pounds thinner.
Do Your Homework.
Thoroughly check out the sites you’re considering. Look at the overall presentation, the graphics, images and general tone. If you already feel uncomfortable just viewing the homepage, it’s not for you try another site.
Don’t Compromise Your Principles.
Choose a dating site that reflects your values and then stick to them throughout the process, from signing up to creating your profile to evaluating the profiles of others and entering relationships.
Relax. You’re not buying a used car. Relationships take time to recognize, initiate, and cultivate. Take your time.
Follow Your Intuition.
Be aware of your gut reactions and feelings as you go through the process. It’s incredible how much communication is subliminal. Call it wisdom, intuition, a sixth sense, or your conscience but pay attention to your feelings and senses.
Do Your Own Work First.
If you’re not comfortable with yourself, how can you expect anyone else to be? Relationships with other people should not be used merely as a distraction from your relationship with yourself. Learn to love, appreciate, live with, and value yourself first and you’ll be better equipped to extend those blessings to someone else.
Check Yourself for Ulterior Motives.
What are you honestly looking for? Is it all about putting yourself out there to find that special someone, or is this an internally-focused voyeuristic excuse to mine the photos, intimate details, and lives of other people? The ultimate point of a dating site should be to meet real people, not spend all your free time scanning online profiles.
Finally, dating sites are not panaceas, they are just another way to connect with other people. Go online, sure, but remember to bring your honesty, integrity, values, and principles with you because that is all you have to sell yourself on.