Technology has put the concept of dating at your fingertips. Find a match, swipe right, swipe life, and bam! You may just find the love of your life.
Unfortunately, things aren’t that easy. Online dating has become more complicated than we could have anticipated.
Relationship expert and author Andrea Syrtash helped us navigate through online dating and how to avoid these common pitfalls.
You know what the biggest problem with online shopping is? We put all of the things we like in our shopping cart, but we seldom purchase them. Aside from the “purchase” part, the same can be applied to online dating, and that’s not a good thing. Andrea gave a straightforward explanation to this phenomenon. “People are always looking for the next best thing… the reality is that there will always be someone cuter, or seemingly more interesting if you keep scrolling.” As much as you might hate to admit it, there will always be someone more desirable than you in one way or another. That’s a fact. But you can only see so much in someone through a screen. “Until you meet live, you can’t assess your real potential.”
When you have your first interaction with someone through online dating, it is something that is typed out. This is understandable, at first. You’re not going to meet up with someone without ever speaking. It’s encouraged to chat with your match. However, “the issue arises when people get involved in e-relationships… people’s personas [through] email and text can be very different from the person who you’ll later hang out with,” Andrea explained. When you are messaging someone online, you have time to think of the perfect response. Think of the times you had a miscommunication over a misinterpreted text message. This kind of communication can get messy. Another communication issue is whether someone is looking for a relationship, or a hookup. People don’t always say what they mean; they say what they think you want to hear. “When people say they’re looking for both a relationship and casual sex, they generally want to make it clear that if there isn’t a long-term match potential, they’d still be up for fun.” Again, there are too many opportunities to mince words when dating online.
It’s no surprise that people are good at misrepresenting themselves online. People are sneaky! People use outdated or edited photos in their profile, or list things about themselves that aren’t really true. They have good intentions, but that’s not the way to find your match. However, these people cannot take all of the blame. People judge very harshly on who someone is, before they actually meet them. “Some online daters get super specific… you’re entitled to some superficial deal breakers, but choose them wisely.” There are things that you may not be a fan of, and then there are deal breakers. We’ve lost sight of the difference between those two factors when online dating
When it comes to online dating, just know that you’re not looking for a wedding dress that can be tailored to your exact taste. The guy you’ve dreamt up in your head may not exist, but there could be someone even better out there. Think outside of your list of qualifications for a man. And when it comes to your qualifications, “show your profile to a good friend and ask him or her to give honest feedback.” When online dating, Andrea says, “it’s important to also have a ‘real world’ strategy, where you’re not just swiping left and right all day. “ You should “take your communication offline as soon as possible. You’re more likely to assess your chemistry and connection after hanging out together for a half hour than you will after a string of emails or texts… [A] part of attraction is based on a full-sensory experience!”
Basically, online dating is just the jumping point to dating IRL.