Online dating can be tricky. Unfortunately, there’s no rulebook to guide you. But, there are a few guidelines that can help you get what you want and keep you safe:
Wait for him to email. Many dating sites have an option to send a “wink” (or a similar way of showing interest) before sending an email. Don’t waste your time writing to a guy who winks at you without bothering to send you a proper email (I’ll tell you more about this on Thursday in “How Online Dating Sites Are Hurting You”). If he won’t put in the effort to write to you, he probably isn’t going to put a lot of effort into dating you, either. Instead, focus your energy on the men who do take the time to write you a nice email. Those are the guys who are more likely to be willing to put effort into making you happy.
Don’t keep writing after 4-5 emails. If you’ve sent 4 or 5 emails back and forth with a guy and he hasn’t asked to talk on the phone or meet up in person yet, don’t keep writing. If he doesn’t want to meet you, he probably doesn’t want a real relationship with you. He may not be who he says he is, he may be a hacker, he may want a pen pal, or he may simply not be that interested, but either way it’s not worth your time or energy to keep it going.
Talk on the phone before you meet in person. It’s best not to rush into meeting every guy who asks you out online. Instead, let him know that you’d feel more comfortable talking on the phone first. Then wait for him to call you. If he agrees and he calls, then he is worth putting on makeup for. Some guys won’t even follow through with the phone call, so why waste your time with them? This is one way of screening out men who only want to hookup. If he just wants sex, he’s less likely to put the effort into calling you.
Don’t get scammed. When you email back and forth with a guy, it’s easy for him to fool you. After all, how much do you really know about him? You might even be talking to a woman! But, there are ways to protect yourself. Until you meet face-to-face, keep an eye out for red flags. Some scammers use the same formula over and over again, so watch out for stories like: he can’t meet in person (for a long period of time) because he is traveling for work, he makes a lot of money but all of a sudden needs financial help, or sudden declarations of love. And never send money! If you have concerns, you can Google image search the picture he sends and see if the search results correspond to the right person, or if he stole the picture off the Internet.
Keep an open mind. It’s often extremely difficult to tell if you have chemistry with someone online. How can you really know if a guy is a match for you based on what’s in his profile or emails? Sometimes men seem perfect online, but within a minute in-person you know there’s no chemistry. Others don’t seem as great over email but are wonderful in real life. So, use tips 1-4 above to weed out the men who definitely aren’t going to be a good match for you, and then keep an open mind. If a man seems to have what you are looking for, sends you a nice email, is willing to talk on the phone, and he asks you on a date, what have you got to lose?
If you do meet a man in-person, you can prepare yourself for success by brushing up on your dating skills. My new ebook, What to Say to Men on a Date: Be Your Own Brand of Sexy, can help. This ebook is a guide to help you answer tricky questions from men in a way that you are comfortable with and fits your personality. It includes basic dating questions that most single women regularly encounter, as well as advice on how to handle men who are upset, unreasonable, or who aren’t treating you well. The ebook gives you a variety of responses to choose from ranging from serious to playful, so that you can pick the perfect one for you. All the replies are designed to get you what you want.
In case you missed it, check out “How to Avoid Online Dating Danger”.
Tune in on Tuesday for “5 Secrets You Should Know about Online Dating” and on Thursday for “What you Need to Know About How Online Dating Sites Can Hurt You.”
Start getting what you want from men. Be your own Brand of Sexy.