They don’t make them like that anymore. Dating is not a cute-meet at a café where you both shared a table because of space crunch, and sparks flew, and the story began. Dating, or more importantly finding a date, is a trickier affair in the days of hunched back strangers. Hunched over their phones, human beings do not have time for the friend sitting across the table; forget meeting someone new in real life. Online dating sounds all easy-peasy, right? How difficult can it be to swipe right or DM that perfect profile? For the many online seekers out there, you know what I mean. It is a great validation to find men and women directly showing interest, and the layers of feeling awkward and iffy stripped off. This should have been smooth. But like any other human interaction, guided or not by binary cells and technology, this is difficult. So here is some dating advice when you are online. Listen up, please.
1. Best foot forward
Remember that their online profile is their curated version of themselves. It has the best picture, best tagline, best everything because the online or virtual personality is a fiction of sorts, written with a deep desire to be seen in a certain way that cannot happen in reality. There are hundreds of articles advising you to keep it real, but how many do you think are paying heed when you have an option to look larger than life? So remember that everybody is trying to put their best foot forward, which means you need to keep your hopes and expectations grounded when you try to test your online dating story in reality (like meeting them in person).
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2. Who dis?
Okay, I understand that you believe you do not choose people to hang out with at face value, so you refuse to put a face on that dating app. But believe me, your noble ideals will be misread as probable creep or axe murderer. There is nothing as scary as the possibility of meeting someone who is not ready to show his or her face on a social or dating platform. And by picture, I do not mean a single peek at your beautiful self, but enough to make the seeker believe that you are not a bot! Yes, the new scary monster in the hood is the bot or virtually generated profiles that do not have a human face behind it. So buddy, put up a couple of pictures out there to help your future date find you.
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Often, long-distance relationships become an online dating fiasco, as the only way to keep up is through virtual communication. How does one keep it real? Try to remember that both of you run on different schedules. Be empathetic towards each other’s time and value your workspace. Everytime you have a chance to speak, try to decide on your next Facetime chat or Skype call so that you can keep your schedule clear. It is lovely to drop a text whenever you have breathing space, but do not, sweet lord I repeat do not, crib over a late or lack of reply. One must remember the gaps left by online communication. The phone, unlike human behaviour, is not a natural organ we are born with, remember that and cut yourself and your partner a generous amount of slack.
4. Wiener not such a winner
Women unfortunately will relate to this more than men, but the only one to be blamed for that is the heteronormative society. A happy ‘hi hello’ and a nice shuttling of good vibes do not validate a picture of your junk, my boy. Stop doing it! Unless it is a mutually agreed-upon move, do not surprise her with your genital photography, it is uncalled for, and you must recognise the abusive mentality. For women out there, the same advice. If you both have not spoken about it, do not do it. You never know when a cyber lawsuit will be ringing your doorbell.
5. Thank you, but no thank you
Be it a rejection, breakup or a cold shoulder; it is easier served in real life than the unfavourable online environment of easy access. Maybe you went out on a date with him, perhaps you spoke to her for a while but realised that things are not as much in sync as you were expecting them to be and you said no. But na mein haan has been the devil’s thought giving birth to stalking. All of you out there who cannot take a rejection, please understand that just because you have access to a dozen other platforms to reach out to your fixation does not mean you will avail them. Of course, blocking is a simple erasing method, but when put on repeat mode can be very unnecessary and tiring. So please understand when someone says ‘thank you, no thank you’, all you do is bow out.
What are your thoughts on the matter? Let me know in the comments section below.