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Posts Tagged ‘Online Dating’

I agreed to meet another man I met through an online dating site.  In email he was charming, funny and complimentary. In person, he was more than surprising!

He wanted to meet at Daniel’s Broiler for dinner, but I suggested we meet for drinks instead.  A few minutes after I arrived and sat down at his table the hostess brought over a long-stemmed yellow rose in a vase.  I looked around to see if the hostesses were putting roses on all the tables and thought it was odd they’d place long-stem roses.  The only rose was the one on our table.  I thank him for the gesture and explained my initial confusion.

A few minutes later, he pulls out a travel brochure for the Albuquerque Hot Air Balloon Festival.  (He had asked me if I had any recent trips planned or if there was anywhere I wanted to go and I mentioned a hot air balloon festival in Walla Walla, WA.)  He presents the brochure to me and tells me this is the hot air balloon festival to go to if I were to go to one.  He then says that he would plan out our trip – arrive Thursday because the activities really start Friday during the day.  (Keep in mind that this is our first meeting and we’d only exchanged a handful of emails.)

I was a little put-back by the suggestion of a weekend getaway when we didn’t even know each other, but somewhat laughed it off.  Then he produced a second brochure; this time for a cruise to Greece!  (Again, this is our FIRST meeting!)  He flips a few pages into the brochure and points to the cruise he suggests we take and then starts to rattle off dates in late August; it’s now only early-May!

Next, he produces a business card for a travel agent he met with that afternoon to get information on the hot air balloon festival and Greek cruise.  It was all way too much for me.

He did confess that the travel agent asked how long we had known each other and that she laughed when he said this was our first meeting.  He also met with a business partner prior to my arrival and his business partner saw the travel brochures and asked about them.  When his business partner learned this was our first meeting he too laughed and strongly suggested
keeping the travel brochures for another date in the future.

It was all just too much to take in and process – especially when there was no romantic chemistry to begin with.  I think the over-zealous nature with the travel brochures would have killed any potential chemistry.

I thanked him for his consideration and invested effort, but said I couldn’t agree to either trip and reminded him that this was a first meeting.

Somehow the conversation transitioned to what I did for a living and he offered me a job running a company he wanted to spin off.  It all felt a little too needy, enthusiastic or obsessed.

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I’m not quite as confused today as I was a year ago or even a few months ago, but I am still confused when it comes to dating and relationships.

The first issue I am facing is a no-drama, healthy relationship. Most people will read this and think I am crazy, but remember my crazy family, upbringing and even previous marriage. The man I am currently involved with is drama-free, attentive, mature and considerate. He’s not perfect, but I don’t want perfect.

What I wasn’t expecting was a feeling of “boriness”. Coming from a drama-ridden and chaotic perspective, healthy and drama free can feel boring. We laugh and enjoy spending time together, but there’s not that adrenalin rush that comes with crisis. While I LOVE the no-drama and healthy aspect of dating this man, it is different from what I am used to and I have to put in effort to change my perceptions.

Although I know there are a bunch of similarities between myself and the man I am dating, I am wondering which differences are big enough to create concern or discord. For example, he’s a process and needs to think about things before responding. There are times when I will ask him about something from his childhood and he will say he needs to think about it and get back to me. I’m completely the opposite and can jump quickly between topics and recall memories or throw out random thoughts. My thoughts may not mean anything to else, but my processing time is quick.

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Dating is most definitely an interesting adventure. In my case it often feels like a tornado – Tornado Dating!

Up to this point I haven’t had many second dates and in the instances where I have dates, in hindsight, I shouldn’t have. I don’t always trust my judgment or instincts and the below post highlights this lack of trust.

I’ve been emailing with an online match for several months. We had plans early on to meet, but for some reason postponed. Then our emails became sporadic until around Christmas. We then began discussing plans to meet. I wasn’t excited about meeting and even came close to rescheduling or canceling. I’m glad I didn’t.

For the first time in a very long time I am intrigued an truly interested in a man both physically and mentally.

We met for dinner and discover a wait of almost an hour before a table would be available. Our conversation was easy, fun and interesting, and our wait passed quickly. We talked about our various travel adventures, embarrassing moments and even work.

Ahhh … As I am writing this I can tell I am recalling the date with the enthusiasm of a school-girl crush. I’m ignoring his voice and my first thought it wasn’t deep enough. What I recall instead is the wonderful personality, energy and smile this man has.

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I’ve made no secret of my awkwardness in dating. There are times I have no idea how to respond; especially when it comes to the goodnight kiss – or even the mid-date kiss!

New Year’s Eve was a fun but mellow night. I went out on a group event and ended up talking with an older man for most of the evening – we were seated next to one another during dinner and just fell into conversation. The rest of the evening, the guy seemed to follow me around. He was a nice guy, but not really my type physically or even personality-wise.

Anyways, he tried to kiss me at midnight and I instead turned it into a peck and a hug. He was definitely going in for an open-mouth kiss and it was awkward for a bit. At the end of the evening he again tried for a kiss. I was more caught by surprise this time and ended up giving him two pecks … After the first peck he was still right there in my face’ I didn’t know what to do and so the second peck resulted.

I almost feel the double-peck is misleading and conveys a sense of interest even when there is none. Obviously, the peck isn’t as misleading as a full open-mouth kiss. I just didn’t know what to do – he was literally right in my face and not pulling back. (Kudos for his confidence, but respect my personal space.)

Even when I can tell my date is going to go in for a kiss I can react awkwardly. Other times I don’t and can smoothly turn and offer “the cheek”. I think this is partly because I don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings. Maybe I should practice the hair tousle or top-of-the-head pat.

I’m curious how others react and respond to the goodnight kiss and other attempts before the end of the evening.

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I’m not currently dating anyone seriously; I don’t even have casual dates lined up. I’m burnt out from dating; especially on-line dating and misrepresenting profiles. My New Year’s Eve will not be spent with a date and instead with a banquet room full of strangers forcing me to venture out of my comfort zone and meet new people.

Am I lonely, yes, but I don’t want to invest time and emotion if I am not into someone or don’t see potential in the relationship. I’ve done this many times and it eventually makes me feel like crap. I begin to doubt my worthiness and value which is insane because I am intelligent, fun-loving and attractive. I know I am not a “perfect 10”, but I do have a lot going for me.

What I have noticed about being lonely, and perhaps this is a female trait, is that I think back on previous boyfriends with a bit of distortion to my memory.

There’s one boyfriend I dated a year ago who was incredibly fun and had an incredible heart and soul. He was also an incredible lover. Unfortunately, he was not good with communication and was a runner. He would distance himself whenever conflict arose. He also had a lot of family issues and drama in his life because of family. Lastly, he wasn’t financially responsible and had funky toes. (I have an anti-foot fetish so funky toes were a big deal!)

I know all of the above and can remind myself of our differences, but during certain moments when I think back I miss him and wonder if I should have stuck it out. Logically I know the answer … We made the right decision to break-up, but I do wonder if I will ever laugh like I did with him; feel as sexy as I did with him; enjoy sex as much as I did with him …

When we were together I knew we wouldn’t be a long-term relationship. We dated for about a year and I made sure I didn’t fall in love with him, but I am pretty sure I did fall in love with him in many ways. Now that time has passed it’s easy to forget why we broke up and instead only remember the good times. It’s easier to reminisce, and even perhaps fantasize, about what might have been and wonder if I will experience the connection and compatibility I had with him, minus many of the incompatibilities, within a healthier and long-term relationship.

I don’t plan on calling him and he doesn’t know about this blog. Again, logically, I know the relationship had specific deal-breakers which remain deal-breakers today. It’s just easier to over-look them because they aren’t present every day and aren’t as significant.

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I met a guy this past weekend who I had been emailing and texting for months. I realize if you are texting and emailing for months without meeting there’s probably not a sincere interest, but decided to explore and see what would happen. So we met.

BUST!!!!

Again, the guy’s profile picture was old and about 40lb lighter than what he currently weighs.

I completely get being self-conscious, but if meeting someone you can’t hide what you look like. The best strategy is to be honest. Yes, you might meet fewer people in person but the people you do meet will be interested in you for you.

It’s a red flag for me when people post outdated profile pictures. If you can’t be honest now, can you be honest in difficult situations? If you are so insecure in yourself, are you looking for someone to make you feel whole or better about yourself? No one can make you complete or truly happy. You have to be happy yourself first.

This sounds harsh, but my first thought when I meet someone who doesn’t look like their profile pics is that I have wasted my time. Unless you bedazzle me with your personality or we have crazy chemistry, it’s a deal-breaker for me.

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I’ve experienced online dating through one popular dating platform and have had recommendations to try others. I’m not sure I want to continue online dating or not, but have noticed how it is perfect for passive aggressive behaviors. Online dating, by its nature, is more impersonal than meeting someone in person and deciding to date and get to know one another. There’s a built-in distance to online dating because you are communicating via email initially. It’s perfect for non-confrontational personalities as you can fade in and out of communication.

Dating is very personal and I understand how some people can feel rejected when there’s not a good match or chemistry. On the flip side, I don’t understand why people are so uncomfortable in saying there’s no chemistry. For example, I met a gentleman for the first time a few weeks ago. I was uncertain if there was good chemistry but was willing to explore a first date. I sent a text the next day saying I enjoyed meeting him and was looking forward to our next meeting. I also followed up with an email and my availability. I received no response from the guy and assumed there was no interest on his side. I did know he was going to be alone for the holidays and just recently invited him out to a group event.

To the above invite he responded via email that he rarely checks the email account he had given me and he assumed I was not interested when he didn’t hear from me. He continued to say he ran into a past friend and was considering exploring a relationship with that friend.

I chuckled when I read the email. He apparently wasn’t interested and didn’t know how to express disinterest. If you are pursuing online dating and providing an email account you don’t check often you aren’t really looking for a relationship. I’ve gone through this phase several times and understand sometimes it is just too much effort or emotionally I just can’t invest. It’s not a crime; it just is.

I’m not upset, depressed or devastated. In fact, I’m relieved as I know a passive aggressive personality is not generally attractive to me. I’m also learning a lot about people through their communication style which helps me better filter people.

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I know the title sounds shallow, but looks do matter to a degree. I don’t think looks are everything, but there should be some physical attraction.

Sometimes very small physical features can turn me off. For example, I am not that tall, but generally am attracted to tall men. I have started to date men who are shorter, but admit I can’t date a guy under 5’7”. (My height with heels on.) There was also another time when a guy I was with had oddly stubby fingers and hands not in proportion with his body. I didn’t like the thought of holding hands or being touched by him. Definitely not a good feeling when looking for romantic relationship.

Most recently I had a first meeting with a guy I met online through the dating site I belong to. The guy was somewhat attractive in his pictures and we had good phone conversations. Meeting in person became a deal-breaker.

I am very much attracted to nice teeth and know this is not something I can compromise on. The guy I just met had severe fluoride stains on his teeth and also had a significant snaggle tooth. His snaggle tooth protruded sideways and even peaked out a bit when his lips were closed. I knew within minutes those were deal-breakers and cut short the meeting after about 20 minutes. I didn’t tell the guy why I didn’t feel attracted to him, but instead said I didn’t think we had chemistry. (It helped that we had opposite personalities, likes and dislikes.)

Balding and gray hair do not bother me, but I am not a fan of mustaches or beards. Goatees are a different category. Some guys can pull them off and others can’t. An unkempt beard is not attractive. Excessive body hair, all over back or stomach and really thick, isn’t attractive either. Plus, shedding leaves hairs all over the place.

It would be interesting to hear some of the physical traits that turn guys off. (I know weight usually makes the list.)

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I came across a site listing 112 Wedding Crasher Rules.  In reading these rules I recognized many applied to dating.  I’ve listed out the rules I believe apply and added some context and commentary

The Rules (A few of the 112 Rules)

  • Rule #5 – Never let a girl get between you and a fellow Crasher. 
    TD: If you surround yourself with positive and emotionally healthy friends, don’t let someone you are dating come between you and your friends.  You may not spend as much time with your friends as you once did, but you should make the effort to keep those friendships going.
  • Rule #6 – Do not sit in the corner and sulk. It draws attention in a negative way. Draw attention to yourself, but on your own terms.  TD: Fun and happy people are attractive.  Get out and have fun and you might be surprised how many people approach you!
  • Rule #7 – Blend in by standing out.  TD: Use caution here … You don’t want to stand out so much you appear psychotic; just enough to catch someone’s eye.
  • Rule #8 – Be the life of the party.  TD: Again, use caution here. Coming across as a gregarious person is great, but you don’t want to come off as frat-boy or party-girl.
  • Rule #11 – Sensitive is good.  TD: Being sensitive doesn’t mean crying for a female or coming across as wimpy for a male.  It means paying attention to your date and being aware.  If unsure, ask; asking is also a sign of consideration.
  • Rule #18 – You love animals and children.  TD: Compassion for others is good – people and pets. 
  • Rule #20 – Always have an early “appointment” the next morning.  TD: It’s important to maintain your own life and interest even when in a serious relationship.  I’m not saying create an excuse or lie to avoid your partner, but time away from each other can actually enrich the relationship.  Also, if meeting for the first time, keeping a time limit can be beneficial.  It allows you to decide if you would like to get to know the person better and provides an out if you don’t.
  • Rule #21 – Definitely make sure she’s 18.  TD: Legal age is obviously important.  I would even extend this to age differences and what is age-appropriate for you.  Do you have common interests?  Does conversation come naturally and easily?  If so, an age difference, when person is legal and consenting adult, may not matter.  Consider the person and not the age.
  • Rule #25 – You understand she heard that but that’s not what you meant.  TD: Communication is huge.  You may not always agree, but understanding the other point of view is important.
  • Rule #27 – Don’t over drink. The machinery must work in order to close.  TD: Drinking isn’t necessarily bad, but when you drink excessively or become a sloppy drinker, it’s a turn-off.  Drinking too much lessens awareness and you are more likely to say or do something you wouldn’t if sober.
  • Rule #29 – Always be a team player. Everyone needs a little help now and again.  TD: When dating or in a relationship you don’t want to lose yourself, but you are forming a team of two  (more if you have kids).  It’s important to know you both will be there for the other.  Also knowing strengths, weaknesses, likes and dislikes can help you divvy up daily must-do’s.
  • Rule #37 – At the reception, one hard drink or two beers max. A drunk crasher is a sloppy crasher.  TD: This rule ties in with Rule #27.  You can’t make good decisions wen drunk.
  • Rule #39 – The way to a woman’s bed is through the dance floor.  TD: I am going to remove the sexual intention from this Rule and instead emphasize dancing is a great way to build intimacy and connection – especially slow dancing.  If dancing to club music, dancing provides an opportunity to have fun while getting to know one another.  I would caution men not to become octopus-man and have his hands all over the girl he’s dancing with. 
  • Rule #40 – Dance with old folks and the kids. The girls will think you’re “sweet.”  TD: I interpret this rule as being kind and considerate.  Nice guys can finish first.
  • Rule #42 – Try not to break anything, unless you’re not having fun.  TD: I am going to take some creative license with this one … if you aren’t having fun, end the date or the relationship.  This doesn’t mean break it off at the first disagreement, but an unhealthy relationship is one worth leaving.
  • Rule #66 – Smile! You’re having the time of your life.  TD: Smiling is important and attractive.  A person smiling is much more approachable than someone who isn’t.  If there is someone you are interested in, make eye contact and smile.  Try it a few times and you’ll be able to see if the other person is interested in you.
  • Rule #67 – Mix it up a little. You can’t always be the man with the haunted past.  TD: Don’t dwell on the negative and highlight various interests.  Few people are looking for a couch potato.
  • Rule #72 – Studies have shown that women have a more developed sense of smell. Breath mints – small cost, big yield.  TD: Bad breathe, and bad body odor, are turn-offs! 
  • Rule #73 – No excuses. Party like a champion.  TD: Life will pass you by unless you live it.  We all have been hurt and need some time to heal, but at some point you have to stop the excuses and get out there. 
  • Rule #77 – Carry extra protection.  TD: Be mature and responsible in your relationships.  Carry condoms.  Don’t drive if drunk.
  • Rule #80 – Stop, look, listen. At weddings. In life.  TD: Again, live life.  Sometimes this means slowing down to appreciate the smaller joys in life we take for granted.  Take a look around you and appreciate what’s there.  If it isn’t working, listen to you inner voice and either work to fix it or leave it.
  • Rule #81 – Occasionally bring a gift – you’re getting sex without having to buy dinner, so you can afford a blender.  TD: Showing appreciation can be done in many ways.  Yes, you can give flowers, but sometimes a compliment is even more powerful.
  • Rule #82 – Always think ahead but always stay in the moment. Reconcile this paradox and you’ll not only get the girl, you might also get peace of mind.  TD: I interpret this as knowing what you want out of a relationship or potential partner, but not getting caught-up in a romantic fairy tale.  Keep your expectations real and grounded.
  • Rule #86 – Shoes say a lot about the man.  TD: How you present yourself is important.  We all don’t have money to dress in designer clothes, but we can iron a shirt rather than wear it wrinkled or comb our hair rather than keep it a mess.
  • Rule #96 – Etiquette isn’t old-fashioned. It’s sexy.  TD: This is huge for me!!!!!  Manners are important.  I don’t need to see what you are eating when you are talking.  Yes, I can open a door, but’s it’s nice when you offer.  This goes for both men and women.
  • Rule #99 – Be judicious with cologne. Citrus tones are best.  TD: This ties in with Rule #72.  Don’t bathe in cologne to mask other odors.
  • Rule #104 – Be well groomed and well-mannered.  TD: Rules #86 & #96 are similar.  You can still be fun, energetic and youthful while maintaining manners and good hygiene.
  • Rule #107 – Know when to abandon ship if it ain’t floating.  TD: Refer to Rule #80.
  • Rule #108 – Know your swing and salsa dancing. Girls love to get twisted around.  TD: Refer to Rules #39 & #40.

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I used to think it wasn’t fair to judge anyone based upon some of their friends, but I have learned someone’s friends are a reflection of the person. There may be a wild friend or two, or even one you strongly dislike, but the overall pattern of friends is important.

I went out on a date Wednesday, the day before Thanksgiving, with the intention of meeting several of my date’s friends and his sister. I was a bit intimidated by the prospect of meeting his friends and family given we have only gone on a few dates. There was also reservation because I feel there is more of a friendship between us rather than a romantic connection.

The night started out okay and I met his sister and a few extended friends. As the evening progressed more of his friends arrived and many became drunk. This was the turning point for the evening.

One of his close friends was exceptionally drunk and obnoxious. He wandered through the bar area of the restaurant starting conversations with strangers that soon turned into arguments. As the restaurant closed down and the bar activity picked up, the situation continued downhill. I’ll refer to him as “drunken guy”.

There were several women, not part of our group, who were also drunk and for some reason this night the drunks were drawn to one another. At some point, drunken guy begins arguing with some random woman who ends up joining our booth. I’ll refer to her as “drunken girl 1”. As soon as drunken girl 1 sits down she begins berating a few of the people we were with. I don’t know what she said, but all of a sudden another girl in our party who wasn’t drinking, I’ll refer to her as fighting girl, jumps up in the booth and starts yelling at drunken girl 1. The two girls began yelling back and forth threatening to fight the other. Drunken girl 1 is then escorted out by restaurant/bar staff. I thought that was the end until the other girl follows her out.

I was stunned. This is behavior you see in high school and maybe college, but not by people in their late 20s and 30s.

Drunken guy then brings over drunken girl 2. I don’t know how old she was, but easily in her early 20s. She was so drunk she was falling sideways out of the booth. Again, I don’t know what words were exchanged, but fighting girl was back up again shouting about “kicking ass” combined with a slew of other derogatory references.

Throughout this time, drunken guy is hitting on me and another friend of my date begins rubbing my thigh while I am sitting in the booth next to him. I distance myself from both of them. All this time my date is invisible and I have no idea where he is. In fact, it didn’t feel like a date at all.

The night was chaotic … perhaps psychotic. I left with my mind whirling and wondering if the night’s events really happened. It was all surreal.

I did realize I don’t want to invite or allow this drama into my life. I also realize I don’t want to invest my emotion in someone who is okay with this level of drama in his life. We are a reflection of those we surround ourselves with.

So now I have to have “the talk” and express my non-desire to pursue a relationship with my date from this night. I don’t think I even want to pursue a friendship because I don’t want to get sucked into the negativity and immaturity.

Just another Tornado Date to add to my list!

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