So, internet dating. Everybody’s doing it but not everybody’s doing it right.
I have to wonder what it was like before the internet age when there was no option but to go out to a pub or club and talk to people. Sounds brilliant to me! Actually, to be totally honest, not all that brilliant really because I am pretty shy when it comes down to it.
There is a common misconception, I think, that dating is somehow much easier for girls than for guys. You know, just put something slinky on, go into town and let the boys do the work!
There is some truth in that but the problem is that you don’t have much control over which guys approach you. It can be pretty annoying to make kissy faces at some sexy guy in a bar only to be approached by someone else that you really don’t fancy who you then can’t get rid of!
For some reason it’s still a bit of a taboo for a girl to approach a guy anyway. Not with men, I think, I expect they love it if and when it happens, but women do judge other women. Sad to say it and it shouldn’t be that way. There seems to be this unspoken rule that you should be able to reel them in and if you have to go and chat somebody up yourself then you are desperate or something. Even if that wasn’t true, personally, I would need to have had a lot to drink to have the nerve to go and chat up a sexy guy and if I’m drunk I’m hardly going to be at my charming best am I? I suppose that’s the same for shy guys too. It’s a sad situation when you’re shy.
As you can see, dating IRL (in real life) is sometimes just as hard for us ladies as it is for you fellas. What to do, what to do??
So, internet dating seems like a good option. You can check out a few guys first without committing to a date before you agree to meet one. That’s the theory anyway but I have got to tell you guys that you are doing a lot of things which are not making girls want to message you back, let alone go on a date with you.
Internet Dating – Do’s and Dont’s
Never fear, Jaimie’s here to help you out! Here is my list of pet-peeves to avoid and top tips to adopt in the minefield of internet dating.
Being too direct (or lazy)
OK, so I’m not on a dating site to find a pen-pal but I do want you to make a bit of an effort and show some interest in me. A one line message like “hey babe, love your sexy bod, fancy a drink sometime?” is just not going to make me want to take it further. Read my profile, don’t just look at the pictures! When you’ve done that maybe ask me about something that I’ve said that you’d like to know more about. Yes, a compliment is nice but it is not going to get you that date unless you can show that you are interested in more than my cleavage. Oh, and for god’s sake, no text-type. If you can’t write a proper sentence in English I do not want to go out with you.
Not being direct enough
So, after saying what I have about being too direct this might be a bit confusing, but don’t overdo the initial communication. If you gush on and on, it doesn’t come over as ‘sweet’ just a bit weird. The sort of message that I’m going to respond to is probably a few short sentences which makes me interested in you and makes me think you have a personality. If you can make me laugh then you are home and dry.
Do I have to explain this ? Look, I know everybody wants to show their best side when they are writing a profile. I do the same. I mean, I’m not going to put up pictures of me first thing in the morning with a hangover am I?? There is a difference between showing the best you that you can and downright lies. Don’t say you are single if you aren’t. Don’t lie about your job, or where you live or anything else. If I date you I am going to find out pretty quickly that you haven’t told me the truth and then I’m going to think that you are a total douche-bag. Especially don’t lie about being single. There was this one guy who had a picture of himself and his girlfriend as his profile picture on Facebook. Took me about 2 minutes to bust him. Idiot!
Yes, I really have received pictures of men’s genitals. So have many of my friends who internet date. Why does anyone think that it’s acceptable to send unsolicited pictures of their dick to a woman that they have never met? There is a time and place for everything and when the time and place are right an erect penis is really a lovely thing. It isn’t a lovely thing when I’m looking through my inbox first thing in the morning.
Getting shitty if you don’t get an immediate response
Why do some guys do this? It mostly seems to be the semi-literate alpha guys who behave like this. They send a message like “hey bae, sexy ass! You wanna meet? X” and if you don’t respond within 24 hours you get a shit storm of abuse. I’ve been called a fucking stuck up slag just because I didn’t respond to a guy’s one line message within 3 hours because he could see that I had logged on during that time. Do you really think that this is going to make me want to meet you? Heads up: sending me a message does not create an obligation on my part to respond to you as soon as I am next online. I have a life you know!
Getting shitty if no positive reply
If I get a message, I generally respond to it, unless it is a really banal, no-effort, one liner. However, not all of those responses will be positive. I am going to say to some of them ‘thanks but no thanks’. If I send a response like that I don’t then expect to receive an abusive response in return. Take it with good grace please. It’s not personal, you’re just not what I am looking for.
This is really infuriating and I think it happens more to women than men. This is where you are exchanging messages and seem to be getting on well and all of a sudden they completely vanish. They don’t respond to messages, not even a good-bye. My theory on this is that people who pull this trick are probably in a relationship and enjoy the thrill of on-line flirting but then get cold feet as soon as it looks like things will move on to a face to face meeting.
It is really annoying though, especially if you have invested time and effort. It can also leave you feeling a bit anxious and wondering who this person was that you have probably been sharing information about yourself with. It’s all about being honest, again. Don’t start something that you have no intention of following through on and if you change your mind at least have the good grace to apologise and say so rather than just disappear.
So, we’ve looked at what you shouldn’t be doing. What about what you should be doing?
Nobody likes writing these, except narcissists. Most people really don’t like writing about themselves and it’s quite difficult because you don’t want to sound conceited but you do want to sound appealing. The sort of things I like to read about are your interests mostly. I want to know that you have a life outside of work and going to the pub with your mates. It doesn’t much matter what those interests are (video games don’t count) as long as you have something in your life so that you are not just some two dimensional wage slave.
One idea which can be quite sweet is to get a female friend or relative to write a bit about you, and post that up. Girls are always interested in what another woman thinks. Just one tip though – don’t ask your mum to write it!
Girls are not as interested in money and cars as you probably think. A woman is more interested in your plans. Yes, it helps if you are solvent and financially stable but, honestly, I would not be put off a guy who was short of cash if he was long on drive and ambition and on realising his talents. The guy working stacking shelves at Asda would get a date with me if he was, for example, working to save money to start his own business. I love that sort of thing. The same guy who would be happy in a dead-end job just to pay for beer and curry on a Friday night would not inspire my devotion!
Probably the worst thing about internet dating is that people just get judged initially on what they look like or, to be precise, on how photogenic they are, which is not the same thing. Tinder is the worst for that because all you get is a name and picture. It doesn’t matter how lovely you might be, you don’t get any further unless someone likes the look of your face. That is the just the way it is these days.
As a guy there are some things which you can do to help. I’m a bit of a photographer myself so I offer my semi-professional advice for your consideration!
• Selfies don’t usually flatter most people. If you have a friend who has a decent camera and knows how to use it, ask if they would take your picture.
• If you are taking a picture outdoors try to do it during ‘golden hour’. This is the hour or so before sunset when the sun is low in the sky and everything gets a warm golden glow to it. It’s very flattering light for portrait pictures. Avoid having your picture taken when the sun is overhead.
• Stand next to a large wall which is painted white with sunlight on it. The reflected light acts like a huge reflector and gives a flattering light.
• Stand up straight and pull your shoulders back. Don’t slouch!
• Any man looks good in a shirt and nice jacket (blazer). Don’t wear a tie, it looks too formal, and have two buttons undone on the shirt, which looks sexy but not trying too hard.
• Don’t wear sunglasses. We want to see your eyes!
• If you have to use a selfie, try taking one from an angle slightly above, especially if you are carrying a bit of extra weight. That will emphasise your shoulders and draw attention away from your waist (or lack of one!)
• Don’t overdo the use of filters. Everybody can spot when they have been used and it’s all just getting a bit old now.
Well, hopefully this has helped a bit. I guess the best advice I could give is just ‘don’t be a douche’. Internet dating can be a lot of fun and a great way to meet people that you otherwise wouldn’t. Just remember to play nicely!
And no cock-shots. I’m serious!