For those of you who have read My Online Angel, you know that I experimented with online dating services while writing the book. Because of all the commercials promoting the sites and the trend of my generation to try online dating, I decided to give my thoughts on the subject.
The main advantage I see in these sites is that they help those of us who aren’t interested in the “bar scene” stay in the public. Let’s face it, unless you marry a UPS worker, you probably won’t meet anyone sitting at home. With all the technology available to us through social networking and dating sites, if you are lonely in this world, then it’s because you want to be. Of course, it’s important you stay safe and don’t give your personal information to anyone!
I think people are too narrow-minded when they think of dating sites because they believe they can only find a spouse when joining a site. Yes, we’re all looking for that “true love,” and we all deserve it, but it’s okay to have friends as well. The dating sites claim to take your interests and pair you with the right people, which last time I checked, is how friends are made (groups of people with common interests).
The “pairing” part of online dating sites is also why I think they don’t work. We put in everything we expect out of a mate and they only send “matches” to those parameters. So here’s my question…If we have been searching for all these certain things and are still single, could we be looking for the wrong things? How often have we found someone who was everything we wanted, but they turned out to be EVIL? I believe this is because we are too worried about what society wants us to look for in a mate. The only way we can fix this problem is by opening our minds and listening to our hearts.
The trick is for us to open our minds and set necessary standards. For example, I have 3 rules a girl has to meet: First, she cannot smoke. This is because I have respiratory issues and I know I would start resenting her for ruining perfectly healthy lungs. Second, she has to be smart. This doesn’t mean she has to be a genius, just someone I can have conversations with on a variety of subjects. Third, she has to be in decent shape. This doesn’t mean a super model body, but it goes back to the smoking thing. I believe if someone was fortunate enough to be blessed with a healthy body, they should take care of it. These 3 rules are broad enough that I’ll talk to just about anyone, but they also prevent future resentment. We all know people in relationships argue enough about other stuff, so why add to it, right?
I’ve noticed that relationships seem to work out when the couple is introduced through mutual friends. My theory is that they work because people don’t want to disappoint their friends and give the setup a chance. This causes them to open their mind and actually talk to the guy who is 3 inches too short or the girl with the “wrong” color hair. If the couple relied on an online dating site, they would have never met!
Life is all about relationships. Even if you don’t find that “true love,” you can never have enough friends. The more people you get to know, the more you learn about the world and the more rewarding your life will be. Be safe, but socialize. You never know what can happen.