Category Archives: Online Dating

#PerksofDatingMe

Last night, scrolling through my Twitter feed I noticed a few tongue-in-cheek posts to the #perksofdatingme trend. While some of them made me straight L-O-L, I noticed a disturbing amount of women posting legitimate reasons why men will find dating them awesome and it made me cringe.  I found myself beginning to reply to many of these women and quickly ran out of character space. Oh, Twitter! 

You know how I love lists and bullet points, so I thought it better to compose a list of the most common reasons women posted why they should be your next GFF with some healthier alternatives that will actually make you a better, happier girlfriend.

1.) #PerksofDatingMe-I love sports, and video games, and dirt, cuz I’m totally just like a guy #FORREALZ

You don’t have to have all the same interests of a guy that you want to date. You have a long road ahead of you if your feel like you have to embrace all of your partner’s hobbies and interests in order to keep him pining for you. Having separate interests is really healthy because you have time to miss each other and new things to talk about. Trust me, my wonderful husband plays D&D every Wednesday and I’d sooner run a marathon than roll a D6. I take that night to catch up with my own friends or do something that I like to do that he doesn’t; like eat sushi and watch Girls.

2.) #PerksofDatingMe-You never have to take me on a date or spend money on me cuz I am just happy to be with you!

Really? You’re content to be with someone that decided to ask you out because they don’t have to put any work into the relationship? Have fun with THAT. Any self respecting woman knows that she is bringing a lot to the table and should never settle for a man that can’t be bothered to do the same.

3.) #PerksofDating me-I care about your feelings more than mine so I’ll always put you before myself

This is called co-dependence. The other C word. You have to recognize that being a good partner doesn’t mean sacrificing your own feelings to make the other person happy. Too many women fall into this trap. When a man loves you he will be willing to meet you half way and compromise to make sure that you are happy too. That’s  love.

I also don’t take this whole trend too seriously and thank god these people didn’t either! Here is a sample of my favorites:

#perksofdatingme I can differentiate between their, there, and they’re

#PerksOfDatingMe I can out drink you… so you will never be the most embarrassing person at the party.

 #PerksOfDatingMe I will show you off to the world like this:
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One other tip before I go! Instead of posting why people should date you online, let The Real Matchmakers do the work for you! TheRealMatchmaker.com

Online Dating 101

I must be in the holiday spirit or something, because I gave you my famous Prime Rib recipe and now you are getting a quick user guide to online dating. It’s the gift that keeps on giving!!!

While you can’t control the fact that there are some wackadoos online, there are also plenty of (somewhat) nice and perfectly normal single people using dating sites too. What you write in your profile and the way that you pursue potential dates is the only control you have in determining who you attract.

Your profile

I always say “let fun be your guide” when dating, and writing your profile should be no different. I emphasize fun, because even if your content is 100% positive, if your tone is not somewhat playful you will come across as arrogant or too perfect.  So, don’t take your profile (or yourself) too seriously. Be candid about your life; Include where you grew up, what you do for a living, a few of your hobbies and interests, and a fun piece of “trivia” about yourself.  DO NOT mention anything resentful about your work, family, relationship history, etc.   It’s like an office party… you’re there to have a good time, but you have to keep all of your clothes on!

When describing what attributes you seek in a partner, list no more than 5 preferences. Don’t be too abrasive when writing this section either. You want to avoid saying “Don’t bother writing if…” or labeling with words like “criteria”, “requirements”, or “must-haves”.  In allowing some wiggle room, you will give yourself more options.  In general, children and religion are the only two defining qualities that can’t be negotiated, so be true to yourself when describing your preferences on these subjects. Focus mostly on your relationship goals as opposed to tangible characteristics like a bangin’ bod or a fat bank roll. This way you don’t come across as shallow, narrow-minded,or judgmental.

It’s important to leave some mystery, so be sure to not go into too much detail about your life and who you think you are. Your profile should not be your autobiography, it is the Cliffs Notes version of the person you are today.

Photos

It is imperative that you use photos that give an accurate visual of what you look like currently. Think of it like this: If you show up looking better in person than you do in your photos you will have exceeded the expectations of your date once you meet face to face! You should have at least four photos posted. Be  sure to include one that is a close shot of your face, one full body, and the others can be a silly/playful photo or of you doing something you listed as an interest like hiking or traveling to an exotic place. If you don’t have any recent photos, grab a friend and ask them to snap some of you. In this age of modern technology there are no excuses for grainy bathroom pics!

Joe's profile pic when I spotted him online. How could I resist such a handsome hotdog?

Joe’s profile pic when I spotted him online. How could I resist such a handsome hotdog?

Reaching Out

It all begins with punctuation. Yes, punctuation. When you initiate contact through an online dating site, write as you would in English class. No abbreviations or writing in all caps. No misspelled words either.  For heaven’s sake, do not address them as “hottie”, “sweety”, “baby”, or any other cutesy pet names.

Why is this so important? It shows that you are mature, intelligent, respectful, and thoughtful. The content of your email is crucial as well, and should be reflective of the characteristics stated above.  You can be complementary in your first exchanges, but be sure to compliment something specific about their interests or if they mention a physical trait, you can co-sign. You have to be careful with the compliments you choose in your first exchanges, so do not focus compliments on appearance or anything remotely sexual.  Safe physical attributes are: hair, facial features, and style. Also, comparisons to famous people are very tricky, so avoid them altogether unless they mentioned a specific resemblance. I once told a guy he looked like Farva from Super Troopers. Learn from my mistakes, people!!

Next, look for what the two of you have in common.  The more specific the commonality the better, be it a favorite musician or a place you have both traveled  even better if you reference it in your profile. This is because when you write to someone they will undoubtedly visit your profile to make sure you aren’t a creeper. Highlighting your commonalities can tie in to the most crucial element of initiating contact online, which is….

 Ask questions! This is vital and it takes paying attention to what they share about themselves in their profile. Don’t ask anything too personal about their back ground or relationship goals. Keep it light and on point with something they mentioned about themselves in their profile. For example, if they say that they grew up in Memphis ask what BBQ restaurants are their favorite locally. That will open a dialogue to set up a date…sneeky, huh? In asking questions you are not only being attentive, you also leave the correspondence open ended. When your questions are thoughtful the person will feel compelled to answer you-and that, my friend, is your IN.

With these simple guidelines you are much more inclined to get a response, and if you get a response, you are almost guaranteed a date!

Persistence and Resistance

Have you ever noticed that the harder you try to date, the more frustrating it becomes? I see this happen from time to time with even the most positive, laid-back personalities. Here you are, scouring online profiles, finally giving in to meeting your best friend’s cousin who is living in a basement apartment…you even did speed dating a few times! Still, nada. Slowly you are beginning to feel pessimistic about the quality of single people that are out there, that no one has clear intentions of getting into a relationship, and frankly, that dating is a waste of time and energy.  The thought may have even crossed your mind that your perpetually unemployed ex wasn’t so terrible after all.

Ugh. Such an icky place to be.

On the flip side, have you ever been on a date with someone you suspect is in a dating rut?  It doesn’t end up being much fun. You spend the whole evening trying to cheer the person up, and that definitely isn’t sexy. No one wants to get into a relationship with someone who seems to have given up on the possibility of love and happiness. Just thinking about this scenario makes me never want to have sex again! Such a turn off! Don’t let yourself turn into a jaded dater!!

If while reading the above you found yourself nodding because you can completely relate, you need to hit the reset button on your dating life STAT. How does one hit the reset button on their dating life, you ask? It’s easy! Start taking care of you.

You don’t have to go into complete hibernation, but take a break from dating for a few weeks. Spend that time doing the things that you really enjoy. Catch up with someone you kept meaning to get together with for ages. Indulge yourself in some reality television shows that you’re too embarrassed to admit you take interest in (Small Town Security, anyone?). Go away for a spa weekend on your own. In other words, date yourself!

This will remind you of the fact that being single has a lot of luxuries. You can spend your time however you choose! No negotiating over what to watch on television, where to grab dinner, or  who’s friends to hang out with. You can put off shaving for another day and eat cold Chinese food for breakfast without judgement. You can go out clubbing with your friends until the wee hours of the morning whenever you want to. Embrace all of your alone time habits and hobbies, because before you know it life as you know it will be over. BET YOU WANT TO GO LOOK FOR YOUR SOUL MATE NOW, DON’T YOU!?

Sure, having someone to wake up next to and to share you innermost thoughts with is awesome, but that person will have morning breath, and will probably interrupt you mid-sentence to remind you to renew the AAA membership. My point is, it all comes with a price.

Once you feel ready to get back into the swing of things, get pumped by splurging on a new outfit or get your hair done at a fancy-pants salon. Guys-nothing beats a nice shave and manicure by a professional. You may even want to try out a new perfume/cologne. It’s amazing how smells can transport us back to old feelings, good or bad, so if your Chanel #5 makes you think of that unfortunate blind date where the guy got so drunk he threw up in a cab, it might be time to make a change.

Next, try a different dating site or look into a dating service. If you go back to your old method you are likely to see familiar faces and that won’t inspire your confidence.

My mantra is let fun be your guide, so if you aren’t having fun, you can’t possibly attract a partner.

Happy (Not) Dating!