Five jaded tips for online dating -- don't get Te'od!
Sadly enough, online dating sites are littered with folks who already have spouses or significant others. The definition of cheating is subjective, but it's a universal that when you are already in a relationship and posing as a single person looking to date, that's cheating. I used to wonder why certain men I spoke with online -- who seemed like damn good catches -- weren't already paired up, but then discovered that they were. Online sites are amusement parks for cheaters, because it's less likely they'll get caught right away. If I had a nickel for every person I've talked to online who told me that they had an "arrangement" or a "don't ask don't tell" agreement or even an "open relationship" with their partners that tuned out to be utter and complete bullshit, then I'd quit my job and buy my own island.
I'm of the "trust but verify" persuasion, as I think everyone should be, and asking to speak to spouses to confirm open relationship status will usually weed out cheaters quickly. But as for the unfaithful jerk-burgers who claim single status -- if their availability is sketchy, they dodge simple questions and want to meet up during lunch hours on weekdays and push for intimate encounters on- or offline, then those are clues that you should head for the hills.
1. Meet online, but date in real life.
Online dating sites are a great way to meet people. It helps screen for match qualities, it gives you a chance to chat it up with new people in the comfort of your home with relative anonymity, and you can determine compatibility with lifestyles, attraction, hobbies, employment and goals. But once contact and a decent rapport is established, you need to take it into the real world over coffee and a bun. Keeping relationships solely online is a really, really bad idea, because you don't actually know someone until you interact face-to-face, and it's never 100 percent certain even then.
Sure, for some introverted folks the idea of getting their asses out from in front of a screen can be scary, but the alternative is that you form emotional attachments to people who aren't what they appear, and you run the risk of making commitments to online personas you've assigned qualities and feelings to that simply don't exist.
Meeting your dream partner online is possible. But what is also possible is to get sucked into an unhealthy fantasy version of a real person with flaws, quirks and issues that you can only be aware of after getting to know them in person. And there are plenty of online predators who get their jollies off by manipulating people to get ego boosts -- or worse -- and getting played by some online poser is embarrassing and shitty. Just ask Manti Te-o if it was worth it.