I have a friend who is much younger - early to mid 20s - who is annoyed that guys send her messages through the online dating service. She thinks that if they are interested they should just call her.
Now, I would be creeped out of my mind to get an unexpected phone call from some random guy who only knows I exist because of my online profile! So I encourage her to respond to their inquiries and move forward from there.
On the plane back home from Christmas vacation, I sat next to a nice young man, and our conversation turned to our experiences in online dating. I told him that I realized it's more complicated than it seems, because I make a lot of snap decisions based on profile pictures.
If the only pictures they have are self-portriats in the bathroom mirror - I pass. It tells me he doesn't have any friends. That he hasn't even been to a party or a wedding in the past two years!
"The only thing worse," I said, "are the guys who take their picture in the bathroom mirror..." "...with their shirts off!" my seat mate finished for me, agreeing. They are looking for hook ups, and have little more than their abs to offer, I concluded.
I recently met a guy from my last dating site who told me that his strategy is to just contact the women who are online while he is online. I found that very odd, and told him that when men IM me while I'm online, I tend to assume they're looking for a hook-up/booty call - and I ignore them.
So, OH MY WORD! If there are these sorts of miscommunications, misunderstandings and mixed signals how on earth does anyone ever meet?!??!
I nearly missed meeting Hometown boy because he wasn't up for making conversation via the dating site email. I'm typically frustrated that many men want to get right to meeting or right to the phone calls. It feels, to me, like they're rushing it. I want to know that we have something in common, that he can carry on a conversation... before I go to all the trouble of picking out an outfit and fixing my hair and makeup to go on a meeting date! I guess I want some guarantee of success! Or I'm just lazy!
With Hometown boy, I noticed his resistance and was slightly annoyed. I thought I'd help him out by asking him questions (via email) about some things we had in common. He later told me that he felt like I was putting him on the spot. I finally understood his perspective when we had our first phone conversation, and it took him a while to warm up but once he was comfortable - we were clicking pretty well.
Because I am a communicator by nature, a writer, a talker and a reader... I sort of expect everyone to operate the same as I do. Hometown boy made me realize differently.
Another man who wanted to meet without, what I considered, a suitable initial email exchange, responded back rather gruffly that he wasn't looking for a pen pal.
Still another wanted to meet without an introductory phone call - which goes against my not meeting ex-cons rule (I'm looking for the link to that story) and I finally said good riddance to him.
Oh, and the anti-pen pal guy also took issue with what he called my lengthy profile writing (which, by the way, wasn't any longer than his - the difference being that I provided information about my values and interests and he instead, logged a series of one-liners) which leads us to the assumption that "Nobody Reads the Profiles Anyway."
I read the profiles. Of course I do.
And if he says he's separated, not divorced... I delete.
If he says he's spiritual but not religious... I delete.
Let's do a little informal survey here... and tell me what conclusions you draw about certain actions.
I'm thinking of doing a series of posts that we could share with men - to open communication and to perhaps make it easier on all of us.