Tips on Safe Online Dating

This is the first of two parts of recommendations for safer online dating.  I wrote the original article (http://www.candidslice.com/16-must-have-survival-tips-for-online-dating/) for Candid Slice based on, my own online dating experiences and the recommendations of another friend. I am adding some notes about my experiences too. So I decided to divide the article into two parts. The second half will be about safety on the first date. I hope you find these nuggets helpful. (Thank you Bob Leah of Candid Slice for the photos!)

Ever try online dating? Could be scary business, if you don’t use some safety tips. Face it, in reality you really can’t know the person from one or even two messages or meetings. These are some helpful hints from my experience and from a friend’s advice from her online experience in dating. She now has a wonderful man in her life.

 1. Know what you are looking for in a date. Are you looking for companionship, for a date, a party partner, or that special “Mr(s). Right?” Make it clear what your intentions are.

2. Take your time!! Do you know the qualities you would like in a potential date? Do not be desperate or show signs of being dependent. These behaviors will mark you as an easy victim for some stalker or abuser. If someone is meant to be your new date, they will be willing to wait for you. The best match for you is worth waiting for!! Take it slow!!

3. Get recommendations for the best online dating site! Most sites have questions that help the service’s computer find the person most closely matched to your personality and interests. Answer as many questions as you feel comfortable with. MyCupid is one that asks lots of questions about everything from sexual adventures to what bothers you. Even though someone may answer lots of questions, be aware that they may not answer them honestly.

If you do contact them, you may even indirectly ask them about their answers to verify they are being truthful. I found that some men let me know they were interested but had not bothered to answer one question!! In my opinion if I spend the time to fill out a lot of questions for them, then they should too. It takes time to answer even twenty questions so check back on the ones you are interested in, in case they just didn’t have time to fill them in at the start. If someone has no questions answered, don’t even go there!

4. Look for the picture of the “candidate.” If someone doesn’t have a picture, they may be afraid, might not photograph well or they may want to remain anonymous. Almost everyone has a cellphone camera or at least a friend with one. I say if you don’t have enough confidence to put your picture up, or even one that a friend recommended, then you might have some serious confidence or self esteem problems. They  are less likely to be a good prospect, unless you like playing Russian Roulette. Of course, it has happened that someone put up a picture of someone else. So again, be wary.

I corresponded with a man who was a little older than I. He shared poetry from his college days about a girl he fell in love with. He was interested in literature, and seemed very nice. After corresponding with him we agreed to meet at a restaurant. I looked for the man in the picture and finally a man, who was at least ten years older than the picture came through the door. He had not been honest about his appearance. But I greeted him with a quick hug, but was a bit shaken when the quick hug turned into a bit longer embrace than I intended!

Another point is for you to post a good picture of yourself too. He also seemed awkward about ordering food at a counter and made some comment about it was good that he had put some clothes on. EEEKK!

5. Don’t start you message with pick-up lines. Don’t start your first message with, “Hello Gorgeous/Handsome.” It is a “pick up” line as old as the hills! If one is looking at my picture, they are only seeing my physical appearance. I would like to know that they read my survey  by commenting on my qualities they found interesting or intelligent. (My survey answers and profile are there to show my uniqueness, things I am interested in, or not interested in.) Hopefully this weeds out the ones I really wouldn’t want to date. Just be sure their intents are the same as yours.

6. Do not ever give your phone number to a stranger, no matter how good they sound! In your profile, don’t give away personal information. If you must give your name, only use your first name. Don’t give the name of your town, your address, nor the business you work for. People can google any bit of information you give them and find out where you live.

7. Don’t lead someone on.  If you connect with someone and find that you don’t like them or are not really interested in them after a few messages, this may sound rude, but drop them! You don’t want them to call you repeatedly trying to convince you that you are wrong or begging for another chance! If you are inclined to tell them something, be honest. Just say’ “I am not feeling a connection with you.” No details, no harm. Just pure honesty. No one likes to be told you will call them in two days and be left waiting. Honesty hurts but a lot less than lies.

8. Narrow the field of candidates! In your profile you can weed out the guys who are not a good match for you by posting things that would turn off the person you wouldn’t want to date anyway. Be honest about the person you are, yet leave some things unsaid, until you have met them and feel absolutely comfortable with them. It may take time but the wait will be worth it when you do find the person who is just right for you. I posted that I liked cats and did not enjoy sports. That would weed out a few guys.

16 Must Have Survival Tips for Online Dating - 19. Did they read your profile and some of your answers? If the first thing they want to do is meet you, and your profile indicated that you want to message back and forth first, then that person very likely didn’t read your profile or didn’t care what you wanted.

If you state you are interested in a person who is less than 30 miles from your home and someone from Texas writes you, they did not read your profile. Don’t bother with them, they probably just liked your picture. I got requests from a 30-year-old man in Europe!! And I am no spring chicken!

Message back and forth on an email site you don’t use much or one you use just for dating services. If the other person thinks messaging is a waste of time or boring, tell them that you feel safer getting to know them better first before you meet them. If they don’t like it, then drop them. You and your safety are more important than their personal entertainment! You are not in a hurry!

10. Listen to your gut feeling! If someone doesn’t sound right or you get a bad feeling from their profile or picture, do not even answer them. You are wasting your time and theirs. If you send them a refusal, they may want to know why you didn’t want to date them. Just drop them or decline their request. My experienced friend told me this. It seems cold but in the big picture, it’s better.

 


14 thoughts on “Tips on Safe Online Dating

  1. Oh, so many good tips here. Being honest, is one thing that is not easy to figure out through online dating.
    Enjoy your Tuesday lovely lady! 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Online dating is unpredictable. You do not know who are you communicating. You can be lied and deceived into paying money to someone you have never met. You can probably be harmed or almost killed by some psycho. People who do online dating today are taking a risk. My blog discusses international dating (which I consider the best and safest type of dating that ever exists) especially for American/Western men. It can be for some American/Western women too (If you ever watch “90 Day Fiance”, you’ll see my point).

    With international dating, there are no lies, games, deception, danger, and psychosis. You (American or Western man) hop on an airplane, fly to a foreign country, and meet women. I highly recommend international dating websites like Dream Connections and A Foreign Affair. You would see profiles of foreign women who are real, honest, and sincere.

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    1. Let me say that I totally agree that online dating is potentially risky. But I totally disagree about the safety of dating overseas. Yes, it is possible to meet and Skype with someone and fall in love. But unless you have lots of money to travel overseas it is quite a gamble. There are unscrupulous people on both sides of the ocean. I have seen on the news about men or women being sucked into a relationship only to be used for money. I am 65 and not rich. I’ll take my chances with some other old guy, from this side of the ocean. I am not prejudiced against people in the least. But I am to the point that I wouldn’t online date with anyone now. How do you know their profiles are “honest and sincere?” No one can know that here or there until a lot of time has been spent with them. Sorry, but not for me.

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  3. Several old lady peers of mine have engaged in online dating adventures, and while each of them bloomed anew during the process…renewed interest/vitality in life, health, appearance, traveling, fashion, trying new activities, improved mood, sense of humor and positive outlook…..which are all very good things that they did themselves for themselves each eventually set the online dating aside after laughable to awful encounters/experiences with individuals out to exploit their age, assets, and basic human need for relationship. Hearts and bank accounts break and bust at any age. Please be careful.

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    1. Yep, been there done that. I never did anything dangerous thankfully. I quit that at least 4 years ago. I got tired of guys not bothering to read my surveys or write ups on myself. I also got tired of one guy in only one call “inviting” me to his cabin!!!!! We had never met and when I said that, he said we can get to know each other!!
      That was freaky scarey!! Now I join Meetup groups about healthy topics like meditation, intuition, being empathic and spiritual things. I go because I am interested in these topics but I also figure if there’s a nice guy with similar beliefs, this is where I would find him. So far it’s looking good! Online dating is potentially so dangerous if you you’re an old gal like us or too trusting. Glad you have a group of “old lady peers” to commiserate with. Hugs and thanks for the delightful comment!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Very good post! I’m in the process of getting my book published, which is a guide to online dating. What I would say is that online dating can exciting and fun, but also dangerous and complicated too. There are many pitfalls out there, such as scammers and catfishers, but the end rewards can be great.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Good to hear a positive remark. I gave up on it. I was careful but decided it was easier to find someone with similar interests through Meet up groups. Joined a meditation, Reiki and other interests, partly for me and partly to see if a nice guy showed up.

      Liked by 1 person

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