The 6 Fatal Mistakes Of Online
Dating and How To Avoid Them
By Dean Shanson
Dating is never easy. Although online
matchmaking cuts out the need for seedy
bars and corny chat-up lines, it doesn't
remove the cause of every difficulty found
in every relationship: the people.
We all make mistakes, and when we look back
on our past relationships, it's pretty clear
that many of us make them all the time.
To help reduce your error rate-and increase
your chances of success-we've produced a
list of the top eight dating mistakes made
by online loveseekers.
1. No Picture,
Let's be honest-looks are important. Sure,
personality is crucial and character comes
first, but if you don't get those butterflies
in the belly when you see your partner's
face, your relationship's got a shorter
life expectancy than a J.Lo marriage.
Profiles with pictures get around ten times
more responses than those without, and for
good reason: anyone who writes to a cyberdater
without knowing what they look like is taking
a huge risk. What do you do if the e-mails
go without a hitch, the telephone calls
last hours, but when you meet face-to-face,
you find you've been talking to Quasimodo's
twin? It's too early for 'it's not you,
it's me' and if everything else has gone
well, you've got nothing left to blame but
Upload a picture, and you'll get far more
responses to choose from. Pick a partner
with a picture, and you can put any future
problems down to personality.
2. High Hopes,
Have you ever noticed how the people who
have the most dates always seem to be the
people who need them least? They're the
happy-go-lucky types, the ones with a joy
for living who could find a silver lining
in a tornado. There you are, sitting at
home alone on Saturday night, dreaming of
being on a perfect date, and they're out
every night without any effort at all.
It's got nothing to do with looks and everything
to do with attitude. Successful daters,
online and off, regard dating as a chance
to meet new people, not a chance to get
laid or pick up a wedding ring. If the date
doesn't work, well heck, maybe the date's
got friends, and at least they've got a
One of the biggest mistakes you can make
while dating online is to expect the next
person you meet to be The One.
S/he might be. But you won't know it for
a while. Lower your expectations, look on
each date as a chance to meet someone new,
and you'll find yourself meeting new people
all the time.
3. Dull Profile,
Okay, we've already said that picture's
are important, but the profile is vital
too. There are millions of profiles on dating
sites across the web-you want to be sure
that your profile is interesting enough
to both catch someone's eye and capture
Bunging on any old description filled with
typing mistakes and boring clichés
is a big no-no-unless you want someone equally
boring to write back.
That means you're going to have put in a
bit of effort. When you first register to
a dating site, by all means write anything
just to get the profile up. But once it's
up, sit down with a pal, a bottle of wine,
and a big bucket of fun, and have a ball
putting together a profile that's witty,
exciting and attractive. You'll find that
like attracts like.
4. The Truth,
The Whole Truth, And Nothing Like The Truth…
'Witty and exciting' is not however the
same as a complete pack of lies. Just because
potential dates are complete strangers is
not a good enough reason to stretch the
Fibs are no less a mistake in online dating
than they are offline.
Remember, every stranger is just a friend
you haven't met, and you wouldn't lie to
your friends, would you? Well, you wouldn't
want to start a new relationship with a
Be brave. Put down your real age, your real
job, your real hair color. Save the whoppers
for the taxman.
5. All Speed,
While love may come at first sight, it rarely
comes with first click. There's very little
you can tell about someone from their first
e-mail, the first phone conversation, or
even the first date.
It's a mistake to think you can move from
mouse click to heart click in a matter of
Online relationships tend to take longer
than those take place offline. The reason
should be clear: any e-mail says little
more than you can find out in the time it
takes for a waiter to open a bottle of wine.
What you can learn in an hour offline could
take you a week on the Web.
Take it slow and enjoy the process. Hedge
bets and talk online to lots of different
people at the same time then whittle them
down. Don't rush off with the first person
who comes along, or you'll find yourself
answering lots of e-mail and having very
6. Give Up, Stay Single
And it doesn't just take time to get to
know someone new; it also takes a while
to find someone you want to build a relationship
It's a mistake to expect all your dating
problems to end overnight.
The real advantage in online dating is not
speed or convenience (although that's certainly
a major plus!) but the easy availability
of the easy and the available. On the Internet,
you should be prepared to meet lots of different
people and over a long period of time.
You'll certainly come across lots of duds
before you find a live one, but don't judge
all the fish by the first ones you hook.
Keep casting until you land the kind of
catch you can bring home and boast about
to your pals.