Instead of my typical, "Things I Learned This Week," I thought I would delve into another arena. Something that causes me a chuckle - Men & Online Dating Websites.
If you are surrounded by married people, and you find yourself married, you probably have no clue as to what I am talking about - but here's the deal: THIS is how people are doing it these days. It's true. The last time I was truly single was when I was 26 years old. I got married at 27. Divorced at 33. Immediately started a relationship. Remarried 34, and now I find myself single at 40. Things have definitely changed.
Many of my friends have been experimenting with the whole online dating world for almost a decade now. Before you get all judgey-wudgey, these are not pathetic girls. These are beautiful, successful, independent women. Basically, all of my closest friends have done it and some have remarried from the experience.
I decided to give it a whirl shortly after I got divorced. Some of my friends/co workers thought that I was jumping into things too soon. Many people kept saying, "Nicole, you need to do YOU." I just laughed, because I've been doing "me" since the day I was born. I have no problem saying No. I purposely chose not to have kids so that I would have tons of me time, and I make a point to treat myself to spa days, things, and I give myself permission to be lazy. Now that I am single, I had nothing BUT time on my hands. I found myself sitting in my apartment - watching TV, reading, swimming, shopping, etc - NOTHING HAD CHANGED. The only thing that did - Now I could actually go out and have fun with someone else, versus hoping/wishing/praying HE would talk to me or even acknowledge my existence.
Sooo.. I decided to do the whole online dating thing. I registered my profile and went to "shopping" for a guy to just hang out with. Here's the deal - I don't want to meet anyone in a bar. I don't want to be "set up" by a friend. Hell, I work in the arts world - most men are gay or not my type at all. I am not going to meet anyone at church (Hello? Catholic and twice divorced.) Sooo.. I went in another direction.
Granted, I have met some super nice guys, had some great dates (wined and dined,) and I have made some good friends. .. the process has become a bit humorous. Seriously! Here is a little advice for men on dating websites:
1. Smile. I promise - it won't kill you. Most of you look angry, sad, or dare I say it? Like a serial killer.
2. Be careful of posting pics with the interior of your home in the background. I don't want to see the pile of laundry, dirty tissues, or your wood paneling on your single wide trailer. Just saying.
3. Don't post a pic of you with another woman. Do I even need to explain this?
4. Don't post a pic with you and a group of guys. I recently got a message from someone, and his only pic was a group of friends. I tried to pick the least attractive one out of the bunch, assuming that would be him. Why else would he camouflage himself?
5. Don't say you are looking for a relationship, when clearly you are looking for sex. OMG.. if I get propositioned ONE. MORE. TIME. Whatever happened to a few dinners, movie, conversation.. THEN you move into different categories? Sheesh, can't you at least pretend? We all know most men are mainly interested in THAT... but word to the wise, girls like me - we don't respond to THAT. Eek.
6. On this one website, there are a few features to help initiate conversation. You can select that you want to "Meet" someone, and you can "favorite" someone. If you select you want to meet me, and I am a favorite - yet never reach out and say hi - uh... what's the point?
8. Mug Shots. YES. Men are posting mug shots as one of their photos. Scary....
9. If we (we as in woman) do not respond to your inbox message - there's your sign. Don't keep pursuing.
10. Finally - posing with a deer head, fish, motorcycle, sports car, and other things as such will not impress most girls. I saw one profile with a guy who was kneeling in his front yard with his dog, his bike, his sports car and his house in the background. Overcompensating much?
Have you ever delved into the world of online dating? If so, what would you add?