A few weeks back I posted my Top Ten Tips for Internet Dating, gleaned from a heady whirl of online dating in New York a few years back. It incited a LOT of comment, here & on Twitter. One of the best published comments on the post was from one of my male readers, “Rob” who kindly left his advice for, “women using the internet to find a guy”. It was funny, thought-provoking and, I thought, ultimately useful, (although obviously all thoughts are his and his alone) so I am running it here for the edification of those readers who may not have seen it in the comments.
“Good list LLG, and here’s a thought from the (male) dark side. I’m a man, and not wholly innocent of some of these ‘crimes’, but I’m surprised by how naive some women are in their dealings with strangers in scenarios such as these. My extensive experience of such arrangements, has helped me develop a list of tips for women using the internet to find a guy.
Ladies – Please for your own protection and sanity…
1.Never, never, never, give them your mobile number or ‘proper’ email address until you’ve decided they’re for you. I’m still being text stalked by a crazy teacher from way back 2008.
2. Assume everything he tells you is untrue until you have incontrovertible proof. Don’t necessarily think he’s a liar, but just wait for evidence that he ‘aint.
3. Don’t accept faded, old, half-face, ‘artfully shady’ photos as proof of looks. If there’s any chance the photo may be fake assume that it is it is ‘dodgy’ and ask for a ‘more recent’ one.
4. Meet soon, somewhere very public, as LLG suggests, and make it ’30 minutes with the option of a second coffee, if we get on…’
5. Then have a friend on standby with a ‘work query’ after 30 mins that you can choose to take, or ignore, depending on how the coffee’s going. But it gives you a ‘out’.
6. Don’t have an alcoholic drink for the first hour if you can’t take a glass without losing your inhibitions- I’ve made that mistake and ended up in a sticky place because I find it hard to say no after two, and impossible to stop my ‘silver tongued devil’ after 3!
7. Always keep your knickers on for a first date. Men too. Far too complicated otherwise.
8. If you meet and feel that you’ve been deceived by the other person in any way, take that call after 30 minutes and Ruuuun! If this is them on their ‘best’ behaviour, then it’s not going to get better once you’ve swapped fluids.
9. Basic maths in support of Ms B – Subtract 2 from their age, 33% from their salary, 25% from their IQ and double their claimed number of girlfriends.
10. Going Dutch – If they quibble over who pays, or suggest you pay half, just leave. This isn’t sexual politics, it’s social courtesy.
Good luck, and if you follow these thoughts you can have great fun in great safety. You just might end up with fewer horror stories to tell your mates.”