Sunday, September 16, 2012

I Hate Online Dating

So I decided to give online dating another try.  I'm not desperate, but I was encouraged by my boss and a few other people in my office to re-visit it, but on a different site than the ones I've tried before.  So, I started praying about it and, last week, I signed up with Christian Mingle.

Almost immediately, I was sent a message from someone who did not have a picture attached to their profile. Experience has shone me that individuals who don't have a picture generally don't look like the person described in their profile.  I was intrigued enough by the message to notice that they had a link attached to their profile that said to click on it to see their picture.  So I did.  It took me back to the login screen for the website.  I thought that this was a little strange, especially after I attempted to login and it didn't work.  So I just closed it out and began to explore the site for prospective dates.  Shortly, though, I got an email from Christian Mingle asking if I had changed my email address.  I went back to my profile and noticed that my pictures were gone, much of my information had changed, and it became clear that my profile had been hijacked.  Likely by the picture-less individual who had initially contacted me.  I called the Christian Mingle help line, which I really didn't want to do (bad enough I'm on a dating site, but now I had to actually talk to a live human being who would know what I wrote and posted about myself.  I could only imagine that person thinking, "What a loser...").  Well, "Jason" confirmed that my profile was hijacked, and told me how to fix it, which was to basically start over with a whole new profile.  Wonderful.

So I've been on this site for a week and I've already learned a few things.  First of all, I'm seeing many of the same faces I saw on and on eHarmony.  These are the same women that I've already rejected, or who rejected me.  Oh, there were lots of others, too, but this was just one of the things I noticed.  Second, I started getting "Smiles" (similar to "Winks" on other sites) emailed to me.  Unfortunately, 100% of these smiles were from women who, for whatever reason, neglected to read all the way through my profile to find out what kind of date I was looking for, since none of them matched my preferences.  At all.  Not even close.  The biggest offenders were those who were well outside my age preference.  I'm 43, and many of these women were in their 50s and 60s.  I even got one from a 78 year old!  I also requested that they at least live within 50 miles of my home town.  I continue to get smiles and messages from women well outside this 50 mile limit.  Florida.  Louisiana.  Michigan.  Massachusetts.  Even California!  What really gets me is that I don't even fit THEIR preferences!  I'm pretty good at geography.  Maryland isn't within 50 miles of Los Angeles or Miami.

Then there are the women who, once I've gently and kindly rejected them, send me a return message and want to know why I'm rejecting them.  It's hard enough to have to reject anyone, and keep in mind these are people who I have no relationship with other than them contacting me to let me know they're interested in me.  I don't really owe them anything.  Why is this so important for them to know?  So I've been truthful in my replies. "You don't fit my profile preferences. And it appears that I don't fit yours, either.  I'm guessing that means we aren't a good match."

The biggest issue I have with these sites (and, really, the issue is with the women on the sites, not the sites themselves) is that the women that I have an interest in and send messages to NEVER reply!  I've learned that I have to be proactive and initiate contact, especially since I and most Christians understand that men need to be the initiators.  I'm a bit old fashioned anyway, so I get it.  I also know that I'm not necessarily the best catch out there.  I know I'm not hideous looking, and I'm not the most out-going guy around, but I know I'm at least above average in intelligence and I've got a great career.  I'm a fairly nice guy.  But I haven't gotten one reply yet to the nine messages I've sent out.

Anyway, I've taken to documenting some of my frustrations on Twitter, and I'll share a few of my tweets at the end of this entry.  If you care to offer advice, or encouragement, please feel free to comment.  I'd appreciate prayers most of all.  Thank you!

Went on a lunch blind date recently. Good time, ended well. Got back to the office & she had already sent me an It's Not You It's Me email.

"It's not you, it's me" really means "It's you."

Hate hate hate online dating.... but I just signed up. Soliciting advice. May need references. Hope my luck will change. Trusting God, too.

I think I'm too old for this dating stuff. In fact, I'm finding out I'm too old for a LOT of stuff. 

Wow, do I hate online dating. ?,,,?

A 78 year old woman "smiled" at me. !?! 

Should I be at all concerned that women in their mid-60s & 70s are checking out my profile? 

Well, it's a step in the right direction... latest connections are at least in their late 40s/early 50s. Still 

So by ignoring my preferences, are these women just hoping I'll come around or should I be taking a chance on older women?

Amazing how many people take pics of themselves in their bathroom mirror. 

Age & distance preferences don't seem to matter much to some women looking for a date, I guess. 

I'm not looking for perfection, but I'm certainly not desperate, either. Where are the ones who are perfect for me? 

I know I'm not necessarily a great catch, but why is it the only women who are interested in me don't interest me?

I hope these women know that beauty is in the eye of the beholder. I'm just not the beholder that's finding their beauty.

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