Plenty of Fish, Tinder, Grindr, OKCupid, EHarmony, Match – they all have one thing in common: shitty people who are looking for somebody to share their time with. Okay, maybe I’m being a bit harsh – as online dating can certainly be generalized by those who haven’t had much luck (myself included.)
However, there are some do’s and don’ts that should be followed if you do become interested in the online love scene.
1. Be honest!
You can put on a façade if you’d like, pretend that you are successful and wealthy without a pimple on your face. And yes, there are some people like that who do exist. But if you are amongst the rest of the single people floating around on the internet, you probably have some flaws. If you went to college, you are probably drowning in debt. You may still live at home and going out means happy hour beer specials. All of those things are okay! Your flaws are will bring people the closest to you. Even if your main profile picture is you with a shitty haircut, if somebody is really interested, that won’t matter.
2. Don’t ask for nudes!
Excluding if you are just looking for a sketchy online hook up- don’t ask. It’s tasteless and is an automatic sign that all you want is a good lay. Additionally, if you are sending XXX shots – you should remember how quickly you sent your girlfriend the screenshot of that text convo you just had. Remember how just like girls have their BFF that they can tell anything to, so do guys. What once was considered a sign of sexiness or a tease; now nudes just make prospective lovers see you as no type of challenge at all. Always keep them guessing!
3. Don’t share too much too soon!
When you are meeting somebody new, it is totally normal to want to get to know them very well. You’ll ask about their family, their job and their friends. But after only a short time of the good stuff, the skeletons in your closet may easily surface. Whether it is all 750 reasons your last relationship didn’t work or the reason you got fired from your last job – it’s understood that it cannot be all rainbows and butterflies all the time. And that makes you also seem more open to somebody when you share things about yourself that may not be the most flattering. But there is a limit to the sharing. The person you are getting to know doesn’t yet owe you that privilege of hearing you whine. It’s okay to have a bad day and mention it. But it isn’t okay to go into details about it play by play. Another grievance you may not want to share right away is family problems. Whether large or small, the issues that exist in your family shouldn’t be shared for many reasons. The #1 reason is because it’s none of their business! Your family is your family until you are seriously committed to them. Once you take that next step, you can decide how much/when to share.
4. Keep your options open!
While you may want to believe that your new bae will be a permanent fixture in your life, the reality is that they may not be. Until it is a shared and mutual agreement that you will only be with them, you should safely assume they are talking to somebody else. And that is okay! They are just playing the game, and you should definitely be doing the same. One of the shallow yet helpful, harsh perks of online dating is that you don’t have to talk to anybody. It’s not like being at a bar and the creepy ugly guy across the room buys you a drink and now suddenly you feel committed to a convo. Online dating proudly allows you to be as selective as you want – take advantage of that!
5. Netflix & Chill is not a valid first date!
So it might sound funny, but if you are looking for a true and valid partner – go to dinner, meet at a bar for some drinks, go to one of those wine and painting classes. Do something that involves talking and getting to know one another. The Netflix and chill phase of your relationship will come…in time. You need to show them that what you want is more than movies on the couch. And it is totally okay to want that! But not the first time you meet somebody. Don’t volunteer to meet them at their house or apartment either. It isn’t safe or smart. Meet in a public place first, tell your friends (or even just one) where you’ll be and then take it from there. Online dating can certainly be fun. But it is most definitely a game. Play it smart and wise. And just remember that if it doesn’t work out, your next potential boo-thang could just be one message away.