So my client wrote her an email addressing her concerns about why he's still single and told her that he was going out of town for the next two weeks. He told her he'd contact her upon his return. It seemed to him to be a sincere and responsible reply. What he didn't factor in was that a) she had given him her regular email address and he was still writing to her on the website (which is a bit impersonal) and that b) he told her he was going to be out of town, so why would she write back to him?
Thus, a week after his return, he's asking me what he did wrong and why she didn't write back. And I'm telling him that she's waiting for HIM to write to her. And the thought didn't even occur to him. Not at all. He never bothered to put himself in her shoes - waiting for him to return from his trip, wondering why he hasn't emailed. All he was wondering was why she hadn't emailed him.
These communication breakdowns happen ALL THE TIME with online dating. And the only way to fight through them is to be vigilant about your integrity.
Let's have a few rules about this, shall we?
1) You say you're going to call, then call. No ifs, ands or buts. If, for some reason, you can't make the call, then call in advance or immediately afterwards to apologize. Don't just sweep it under the rug like it never happened.
2) It's okay to disappear when you're emailing on site - it's not okay to disappear after a few dates. A simple email claiming that it's just not a long-term match should suffice.
3) If there's someone that you like but find yourself getting serious with someone else, tell the TRUTH. "Sorry I've been out of touch, but it looks like things are progressing with someone else. I have no idea what the future holds, but if it doesn't work out, I hope I can still call you in the future. And if you're taken at that point, well, it's my loss. Good luck in your search." It may not be pleasant to receive such email, but it's hard to hold it against someone who has the tact and class to be honest. Needless to say, this is all Golden Rule stuff, but it always bears mentioning. It's so much easier to be judgmental of others than it is to shine the light on our own behavior. Just imagine if everyone followed the Golden Rule online; these sites wouldn't be half-bad, would they?