Self employed or busy job – no time for dating and nervous about online dating?
Worry not. Here’s the Arrow guide to safe online dating.
2/ Make time to go through the set up process – Your profile ‘blurb’ should be between 300 – 500 words – funny and informative, not ‘War and Peace’. Avoid negativity like ‘I don’t want any lying, cheating, players’ or ‘I’ve had a rough time and need someone by my side’. This sounds angry and needy and put prospective suitors off.
3/ Upload a recent picture.
4/ Security – set up a separate hotmail email address and buy a very cheap pay as you go phone (£10 – £15).
Never give out email addresses linked to your Facebook account or other personal online accounts. Don’t give out full name, date of birth or address to other users.
5/ The flirt button – This is ok to register interest but many users prefer a proper email straight off – it is a good idea to have a saved template which you can drop in and possibly revise to suit a particular profile you like, a bit like a CV.
6/ Don’t get upset or downhearted if people don’t reply, just move on. If someone gets in touch and you are not interested, just politely reply with something tactful like ‘I don’t think our profiles are compatible’. If you get continuous, unwanted attention, don’t enter into dialogue, block the individual and move on.
7/ As a general rule of thumb – you’ve been exchanging emails, how long should you wait before a date? I would say, as do a lot of people, about a week to 2 weeks. Any longer and the recipient might be asking ‘why?’ There are cases of emailing exchanges for up to 3 months and when they finally meet, its an immediate ‘no’.
8/ Meet in a very public place cafe or bar and let at least one friend know where you are and make sure they’ve seen the person’s profile who you are meeting. Possibly agree for them to call you an hour in and have a safe word you can use.
First date short not a day out …. not meals or cinema
9/ Remember. they will probably be as nervous as you are – I sometimes forget as I meet people all the time but don’t make it too serious and only meet up for a few hours at first.
Light conversation – family, friends, background story.
10/ Body Language – watch theirs and yours. How do they position themselves? Note whether they make eye contact when speaking to you. Do they touch your arm or your leg, do they mirror your body language or cross their arms, not all definitive evidence of whether or not they like you but can be helpful.