Online Dating Newbie: How Online Dating Opens a World of Possibilities
As our online dating newbie concludes her experiment, she learns that the online dating world is full of possibilities – both good and bad.
The past few months of my online dating experiment have been…. eye-opening, to say the least. As soon as I signed up and logged on to these virtual “love clubs” on the Internet—Zoosk, Date British Guys, How About We, OkCupid—I found myself in situations that I never expected to be in.
There were times when I thought, “What the hell is going on?” (in a bad way), and others when I thought, “Is this really happening?” (in a very good way). It’s been an experience filled with ups and downs – and I’ll share the final ones with you now.
Up: I had my first pen pal
Before joining the online dating world, my only experience with having a pen pal was writing to Santa Claus every Christmas when I was a kid. Although, he wasn’t a very good one because he never wrote back.
I had much better luck with a guy I met on Zoosk. He was from Texas, obviously too far from my own zip code to develop anything serious. But, we had a lot in common and the idea of becoming pen pals piqued our interests. It was fun to come home and write an email to him about what was happening in my life, and I found myself looking forward to reading about his job, family, and ambitions in a place I’d never been before. We were refreshingly honest with one another, because, as he put it, “Either way, we find out that we disagree on everything and get disgusted with one another, or we actually become close friends. This seems like a little piece of wonderful.” And while it lasted, it was.
Down: Overly Persistent Strangers
I never thought online dating could be scary, but there were a couple of times that it was. I was accustomed to receiving messages from guys on sites like OkCupid and How About We, but when they would message me non-stop, or take it one step further and track down my email address, or even worse, my phone number, then a mild panic would set in. It was an unwelcome reminder that putting myself on these sites exposed me to people who might abuse the process, and it could be just as dangerous as meeting an overly persistent or threatening person in real life.
Up: There’s Plenty of Options
One of the best things about online dating has been that I can see all of my options – and how many there are – right off the bat. I’ve found comfort in seeing just how many users have been a good match for me on OkCupid, and how many men on How About We have had creative and fun date ideas. These aspects of the online dating world have given me hope that there really are plenty of guys out there. So, when my other single girlfriends complain, “There are no good guys left,” I can no longer agree with them. Sure, it may take some time to find the right one, but I’m happy I have sites full of options.