5 Dating Lessons From A Not So Hot Online Match

Photo: WeHeartIt

In person meeting is easier but online can be a strategic part of your game plan.

Last year I tried PlentyofFish.com, Chemistry.com and OKCupid.com  and didn't have such a good time.  The men did not look like their profile pictures.  The only men that hit on me were short, fat and bald.  I only met a couple of the guys and nothing clicked.  There was even a golf singles site but only much older guys hit on me.

Recently I got some great advice from a guy dating coach I know.  He told me to dress in skirts and watch for the men already in my life and flirt with them.  Yeah, sounds easy enough but I stretched out of my comfort zone and started doing what he told me.   All I can say is that flirting with the men I run into in my daily life is paying off big time.  Because I am not in a relationship, I can say yes to any of their invitations...for now. I have never had 3 men texting/emailing me at the same time before.  Could it be this easy?

I wondered if my new confidence would transfer online so I figured why not give Match.com a try.  After all, according to The Match of Match, 25,000 people join match every day.   I was impressed right away.  The website is easier to use than any other I have tried and I was able to throw up a bare bones profile pretty quickly.

Since joining a few days ago, 463 guys have liked or winked or emailed. Mostly older men though I am clear that I want to date younger on my profile.  One profile got my attention.  Intelligent, well educated, the right age group and seemed to have a sense of humor.  I want to meet online prospects as soon as possible.  Even before a phone call.  I want to know straight away if there is any real spark.

I was glad he suggested a coffee meeting and picked a location midway between us. I do like when a guy takes the lead.  We met this afternoon.  It was a definite no.  I knew it immediately. It was an awkward hour but I did enjoy the experience.  I am proud of myself for getting out there and making new contacts.

Even though it was not a good match, I walked away with these 5 ahas:

1.  A great profile may mask a lack of social skills.  Many technology and science minded men have poor social skills.  A perfect example for why it is critical to meet in person as soon as you start connecting.  Some personalities are repulsed by others and that can hide in text/email exchanges.

2.  Notice if his emails have the same flow as his profile.  If the emails are awkward in comparison to the profile, good chance he hired a pro to craft his bio.  Nothing wrong with that.  Just a heads up.  You might choose a section of the profile to ask about.  If he traveled to Italy, ask him a question about that and see how he responds.

3. Notice if his smile is a little forced on his profile.  A guy with weak social skills or an introvert may have a deer in the headlights stare or a fake looking smile. Meeting in person will let you see his smile. If he barely smiles through your first meet and greet, walk away. (Bonus Tip: Only pick guys with several pictures on their profile. Avoid the single picture guys...they seem to be flakier.)

4. If he doesn't offer to buy you coffee when he picked the coffee shop to meet, walk away and keep your sense of humor with you! Seriously.  Maybe socially clueless but...come on, right?!?

5. When you are with someone that is not a good match, repeat this mantra: It is not about me. The lack of connection between the two of you is just that....a simple lack of connection.  It is no one's fault.  Look at it this way, the faster you know, the faster you can get on with it.  Next.

So, overall what do I rate the meet and greet?  

I would say a solid 6.  We were an intellectual match and we did have an interesting conversation.  Our personalities are a complete mismatch though so it was immediately clear there was nothing to pursue.

I think he hired a pro to write a great profile.  His in-person energy was nothing like the profile. I need to figure out a way to get out of there in 30 minutes or less.  I'll be working on that before next time.  I know that I want a neutral "Next!" attitude while I am dating.  I know I will meet a variety of men and there is something valuable in every encounter.  Next time I meet someone who is not a good match, I want to say a nice good bye, good luck and Next....in 30 minutes or less! :-)

Catherine Behan is a Dating, Sex and Intimacy Coach practicing in San Diego, CA. For a free 20 minute chat to explore your dating style or lack thereof, click here.