Online Dating – Have Fun, Be Safe

Dear Karen,

I’ve heard that the guys doing online dating are not the type of men you want to be with.  It makes me nervous about putting myself out there.  Should I just find other ways to meet men? – Tracy, AZ

Hi, Tracy,

I’m a huge fan of online dating, so let me start right off with that – and I’ll tell you why.

When you’re looking for single men to date who are a fit for what you’re looking for, and who want what you want, you have (basically) two options:

A)    You can cruise through your daily life, hoping for a chance encounter with a man you’re attracted to.  Then you have to figure out his relationship status (single and available, dating someone seriously, or married?) without seeming aggressive.  Then you have to let him know you’re available for dating.  Phew!  So much work…before the first hello!

B) You can log on to a site where there are literally thousands of men in your geographic area, who have already identified the following information (which you can find out with just a few clicks of your mouse!):

1)    Their availability (and sure, there are men who are not telling the truth…just like in the real world; there are men – and women – who don’t tell the truth);
2)    What they’re looking for;
3)    What they like to do for fun;
4)    Their “stats” (age, income, education, etc.).

As long as you’re clear about what you’re looking for, as well as clear about who you are (and you’re able to represent yourself well online), then all you need to do is use common sense and go for it!

Common sense dating checklist:

•    Don’t have a man you don’t feel comfortable with come to your house to get you
•    Always meet in public places
•    Have someone know where you’re going and with whom
•    Don’t give out your home number until you’re comfortable doing so (most men appreciate the vulnerability women feel, and many will even offer their number so you can call them)

Have fun with this, for goodness’ sake – think of it as an adventure.

And as a nice bonus, you’ve got the potential to meet the man you’ll be happy to spend your life with.

One final note: whatever you’re expecting is what you’ll probably experience (it’s true about anything, really, but let’s stick to the topic of online dating).  I strongly encourage you to choose a positive outlook, and expect to meet great men, rather than adopting other women’s negative attitudes about this.

Key words: scared to online date, safe online dating