Is it time to take ’em down?

In the mini-series for newbies this week, we have taken you from filling out your profile to finding potential partners to almost giving you away at the altar in three simple articles.

If only, eh? There will come a time, though, when you have met your perfect partner and it’s time to say “bye bye!” to online dating. But how do you decide when that time is right and whose decision it is?

If you’ve met your partner on one of the thousands of global dating sites – by no means the ‘in-the-closet’ hobby as once deemed, rather, the en vogue way to meet partners, these days – you will know a fair amount about their dating past, perhaps even been privvy to and shared some of the reverie and dating site gossip attached to Internet forums and discussion groups of this ilk.

Make no mistake: you’ve undertaken to overlook what has gone in the past by starting dating regularly offline, but are you concerned that they’re still dipping back into the dating site to check their messages?

And if you’ve supposedly taken yours down but know full well that your new partner hasn’t (because yours is actually still live and you’re checking up on them), how do you approach your partner and suggest that it’s time to leave the chat-rooms to the singles in the dating community so that you can concentrate on your blossoming relationship?

Don’t beat about the bush

It may be a little early to talk about long-term commitment, but bringing the subject of the live dating site profile out into the open will certainly give you some idea of where your relationship is headed in the short term.

If your satisfied with the outcome and, perhaps having been around the block yourself before, are wary of jumping in both feet first, the simple act of mutually cancelling your dating sites accounts may be enough for you.

However, if you’re looking for more of a commitment, perhaps you are scared of being hurt and are not satisfied with your partner’s reaction to the suggestion and utterly refuses to take down their profile, perhaps you should think twice, too.

If you are positive that 100% commitment is what you’re looking for and the partner you’ve chosen to date offline won’t give it to you, then fight fire with fire, leave your dating site profile live and you may strike it lucky with a like-minded single who shares your passion for monogamy from the off.

At the end of the day, the decision to cancel or stick with your dating sites is your decision, and yours alone. Only take them down for the right person and never feel pressured into going further than you want to, unless you’re completely comfortable with the fact that you’re ready to drop everything for your new partner.

Happy hunting, everyone – remember, stay safe, have fun – there is a Mr or Mrs Right for everyone in the world of online dating!

Patience is a virtue – and a prerequisite

Yesterday we started a mini-series for those new to online dating, beginning with the article ‘We all have to start somewhere‘.

Hopefully, now that you’ve got a few ideas about what to put it in your dating site profile, you’re going to start seeing some responses.

But that won’t happen straight away – don’t expect to be inundated with a flood of offers the first time you log back on to your dating site.

It may be your first attempt at online dating, but other members will have been around the block a few times.

Trust is the basis of any relationship

Just because you’re looking online for love instead of in the clubs and bars or down the gym doesn’t mean that the usual rules of engagement don’t apply – trust is imperative. In many cases, you only have a photo to go on and no absolute guarantee that there is a real person behind the image.

As things stand, there are no laws in place that state dating sites must place warnings on their home page about the threat of scammers but that threat – like the scammers themselves – are very real.

As such, you’ll discover a world where people take things one step at a time – it’s not like you have to get a phone number before last orders or kicking out time.

Don’t fret if you have to wait a few days, even a week or so, before you get a bite. You may find that you get better responses off different types of dating sites, especially if you are looking for a relationship of a more adult nature, from the off.

Don’t send out desperation e-mails or private messages

What you must not be tempted to do is write one message, send that same correspondence to a list of potential partners and hope that it works with everyone, in the hope that someone responds to you.

Other members, just as you have done, have taken time to craft a profile that reflects them, expecting people to pick up on their preferences when they’er approached. You may get lucky with a few members with one ‘template’ message but most will ignore any correspondence that isn’t specific to them.

Remember, you want to find a person that’s relevant, with whom you can build a relationship, whether you’re thinking long term or fleeting; do not waste time answering or approaching anyone with whom you have no intention of developing the relationship offline.

Keep in touch with yourself

In the part three of this mini-series for online dating newbies, we’d like to underline the importance of communication – not just with other members, but keeping your information fresh and relevant so that your dating profile reflects the real you at all times.

Life changes and, as is true with anyone who wants to get more from life, we all look to improve our circumstances.

Obviously, as you’re perusing dating sites, your love life is one aspect that you’ve identified as an area that ‘could do better’.

But if academically, socially or, perhaps more importantly for this exercise, your career can move through a few gears, let the world know about it.

Attract a better class of correspondent

There are millions of dating site members across the world – some sites on their own have in excess of seven-figure sign-ups. You need to make yourself stand out from this crowd and attract the partner you deserve.

Your cause will be aided no end by matchmaking sites who pair singles based upon their looks, personality and achievements. If you are promoted at work, let the whole dating site community in on your good news; the more positive you can be – in your outlook as well as your profile – the more chance you have of enticing a better class of correspondent.

You will attract ‘hopefuls’ and ‘spammers’

As you progress and get into the world of online dating (it is very addictive) and your status and the level of trust others place in you grows, you will get messages from members who, not to put too fine a point on it, are several leagues below you or just blitzing members with an e-mail template.

Always remember that they may be where you were when you first started your illustrious dating career. They may not have had the benefit of a ‘how-to’ guide like this to help them get that first step on the ladder. Please, feel free to direct them here, if it’s apparent they’re dating site newbies.

Remember to remain courteous at all times and do not just ignore their advances (unless, in the unlikely event that you have thousands to answer – I say unlikely as most dating sites will impose a limit if they see your inbox getting too full). Here, you can draft a pre-written template to respond to them, but make it sincere and polite. Something along the lines of: “It’s great that you’ve taken the time to get in touch, but, having browsed your profile, you’re not really what I have in mind for a partner, right now.”

Of course, the other time you don’t want to be contacted – by anyone – is if you think you’ve cracked it and found your perfect partner and it’s time to take your profile down.

This mini-series will conclude with an article to help you decide if it’s time to leave the world of online dating behind, or not.