Dating can be daunting. It no longer begins with a simple, innocent, “meet cute.” I’m aware that online dating has been around for a couple of decades, and although I’ve been widowed for awhile, I’ve shied away from sticking my toes in that particular pool.
So I sought information from that all-knowing resource, Facebook. Because I am a divorce mediator, I’ve joined several Facebook groups that bring people together who are newly single. These groups, according to their administrators, are designed to provide emotional support to members going through divorce. Inevitably, the comments in these groups turn to dating. Which online dating sites are better than others? What do you do if you’re ghosted? Why are people so obsessed with looks? With sex? When is it too soon to fall in love again? Will they ever fall in love again?
I read through the questions and comments with both professional and personal interest, and with the intent to blog about online dating. Armed with the belief that we first have to decide whether we’re looking for companionship, sex, or love, I began my research by asking Alexa if she recommended online dating. Her response was to give me a list of movies and reality tv shows on the subject. Strike one.
My next resource was Google. After I scrolled past the ads, it seemed that Google was overwhelmingly in favor of the whole concept, and even went so far as to list the best dating sites.
On the other hand, most of the people in my divorce support Facebook groups had nothing but negative tales to tell. Being a neophyte about dating profiles, paid sites versus free ones, and swiping right or swiping left, I decided to do an informal poll, once again on Facebook. I got a lot of feedback in a short amount of time, so I’m going to unscientifically divide the results into three categories.
The first group are the “I could write a book” people. They had what I’ll optimistically refer to as adventures in online dating.
The second group were totally deceived by the people they met online. Evidently, a lot of online daters lie in their profiles. Who knew?
The third group are the success stories. There were many uplifting tales of couples who met online and are still happy together.
Quite a few people told me the online dating sites that cost money attract people who are more serious about a relationship, while the free ones attract people who are simply out for a good time. I was told to trust my instincts. If someone doesn’t seem genuine, run the other way. Safety concerns were also addressed, time and time again. Meet in a public place, don’t divulge where you live or work until you’ve taken the time to get to know that person.
This is some scary stuff. I think I’ll just wait until someone I trust tells me, “Nancy, I want you to meet my friend.”
Sadly, for women that would like to re-enter the dating world,there are a host of reasons why the online approach can be a huge waste of time.
To begin, if you are honest in your profile & photos, be prepared to be lied to repeatedly in any way imagineable.
If you are not hot (even if you are in your 60’s), be prepared for either no responses or being swamped by 30 something Nigerian Princes that will tell you age is of no consequence & they want to know if you are ready for commitment to them even though you’ve only exchanged 2 emails.
Your financial viability is of great importance. That portfolio has to be top notch before a guy will take notice.
The majority of guys are just looking for a sugar momma or someone 20-30 years younger that they in no way could keep up with despite viagra. They want a woman that has no baggage (code for family affiliation or financial responsibilities like a mortgage or other bills). They don’t want to commit to anything other than buying you a cup of coffee in exchange for all in sexual exclusivity. And so many believe you will declare fielty when they send you a pic of their male appendage in all it’s glory.
There are other really scary aspects of online dating that I won’t go into, but tbe best way to meet someone is to find an activity you like such as dancing, fishing, shooting sports, tennis or golf to name a few. Spend the money on a membership you would use anyway & just have fun even if you don’t meet someone.
Carol, thank you so much for your insight! I love your suggestion, “spend the money on a membership you would use anyway . . .” Brilliant!
Thank you, Amy!