The Online Dating Veteran’s Dos & Don’ts To, What Else? Online Dating
What to do and what not to do on a date.
I have been through it all when it comes to the world of online dating. From being stalked to literally screaming “FML,” I have seen the good, bad, and the ugly. From my experiences, I have determined, among other things, that it is in fact good to “internet stalk,” why the first date isn’t really one at all, and why false advertising is never ok! Here’s my list of dating dos and don’ts:
Do be smart about your profile. Too short and people won’t take your profile seriously, too long and no one’s gonna read it. Pictures – you need a mix of close-ups and body shots. Close-ups to show everyone you’re not hiding an ugly mug, and body shots to prove you’re not hiding a beer gut. Reversely, if you’re looking at a profile and there are only have pictures from a distance or pics cropped from the neck up – keep moving. Your dream man (or girl) is definitely hiding something. Think I’m being materialistic? Well guess what people. LOOKS MATTER. And it’s the first thing people see when scrolling through profiles, so make sure yours stands out!
Don’t false advertise. As we all recently learned from my TFA story, NO ONE likes a false advertiser. Your pictures should be as recent and truthful as possible. Recently gained 15 lbs? Then don’t put up pictures of you 15 lbs thinner! No matter how many pairs of Spanx you have strapped on underneath that dress, he’s gonna notice. And men – same goes for you. We do notice when a 6-pack online translates to a beer gut and love handles in person.
Do get a last name and (internet stalk) away. Google search, Facebook stalk, Twitter stalk – trust me, better to find out anything unsavory now than a few dates in when you’ve wasted time and energy. And if you think he isn’t doing the same, think again.
Don’t spend more than a week corresponding before meeting up in person. Otherwise you will end up generating expectations and feelings for someone you have never even met. And don’t fool yourself – you have no idea what a person is really like (physically, intellectually, emotionally) just from messaging online or talking over the phone. The in-person meetup is the real test.
Do know where you date lives before you meet for the 1st time. Not only will this help you weed out undesirables if they live outside of your dating zone (yes, I have a dating zone. yes, feel free to judge), but obviously, where a person lives (especially in the realm of New York City) says a lot about their character and your potential compatibility.
Don’t think the 1st date is a “real” 1st date. In online dating, the first time you meet someone is just that – a chance for you to meet the other person and make sure you both meet each other’s expectations. As such, never plan an extensive date when you first meet. Meet for coffee or a drink. That way if your Prince Charming looks and or/acts like a Troll, you can easily escape.