Some suggestions for online dating

Let's identify my biases. I am 60 years old. I am not looking for hookups or ONS's. I would prefer to find a woman who shares my interests and beliefs and can share the rest of my life without telling me to stop eating fried chicken. In fact, I think that I have found her. We've been dating for 4 months now and everything is somewhere between east of hunky and west of dory. I found her online.

I read a question earlier today from a young man complaining about his lack of success with online dating. He asked for some suggestions, so let's get down to it.

1. Pick the right online site. Some online sites cater to a particular crowd. Christian Mingle appeals to a certain sector. Black People Meet has an obvious target population. Other sites seem to be geared towards older people, while some are notorious for promoting hookups instead of relationships. Oh yes. There is also a site called Ashley Madison; I guess you know what they are all about.

So . . . what are you all about? Are you looking for a serious, long-term relationship that might lead to marriage? Are you just looking for casual dating with no commitment? Looking for hookups? Threesomes? Be honest with yourself. Guys, if you are 24-25 years old and you are getting tired of dating the girl of the week and you have actually started to think about one day being a father . . . it's time to admit that you want to find a wife. You don't need to say it out loud and you certainly don't want to make this admission at the boys night out, but you do need to admit it to yourself.

Find a website that gives you a higher likelihood of success at finding what you are truly looking for. Do some internet research and ask your friends. For a 60 year old guy who looks and acts younger, Plenty of Fish worked well for me. I tried and met a few women but I also had frequent messages from obvious scammers.

2. Paid vs. Free? If there is an option for free vs. paid membership, consider the paid membership. It usually offers more possibilities for communicating and the costs are not prohibitive. What you are seeking is too important to worry about saving $50-60 (unless you don''t have $50-60, in which case you need to be thinking about how you can afford to date at all.)

3. Take a sneak peek. Before you create a profile, use the option of perusing a site as an unpaid guest, especially if you can view profiles. This will sound weird, but . . . look at profiles of users of your gender. Know what your competition is. Guys, if most of the guys on a site look like stoners or drunks just looking to get laid . . . you need to know that. If most of the ladies post pictures of themselves in lingerie, . . . you ladies need to know that.

4. Don't pick a stupid username. This is not a good time to show your sense of humor. How many girls will be interested in a guy who calls himself IFartAlot? I would probably not even read the profile of a lady whose username is NotReallyABigSlut. Choose a username which gives a complimentary reference to your character or your interests. A username like SouthernGentleman1955 will get the interest of many women in my age group. Think about what will be appealing to the opposite gender in your age group.

5. Post pictures. Profiles with no pictures get very little attention. Guys, don't post pictures of you not wearing a shirt, hanging out with some unidentified girl (unless it is obviously your mother,) drinking beer, driving a jacked up pickup truck, etc. Your pictures project an image of you, What kind of image do you want to project? Online dating is not like knocking a chick over the head with your club and dragging her into your cave. Properly written, your profile can be persuasive but it will never be overpowering or compelling.

Ladies, if you post pictures of you in a sexy teddy, guys will assume that you are interested in hooking up. Pictures of you in front of the Eiffel Tower? They'll assume you are high maintenance.

Make sure that your pictures are current. Don't use glamour photos. Review and revise your pictures occasionally.

6. Write a profile that is different. First, several women who contacted me were impressed because my profile had no misspelled words, no typos, no stupid slang, and it conveyed an impression of intelligence. If that is not the impression you want to convey . . . enclud sum dum goofee stuf like this.

A profile should briefly explain what someone would learn about you if they spent several hours with you on a first date. What is your educational level? Occupation? Smoke? Religious? Strong political beliefs? Ever been married? Interests and hobbies? It should also briefly describe what is truly important to you? Are you devoted to stray dog rescue? Save the whale? Passionate college football fan?

Guys, women will read your profile before they respond to your messages. Don't say the stupid cliches that everybody else says, like "I like to take walks on the beach." If you are looking for a serious relationship, tell them things about yourself that would make you sound like a good catch. ("I like to spend time with my nieces and nephews . . . I've worked at the same job for three years . . . I'll be starting college in January," etc.) Talk some about long-term goals, so you don't sound like one of those guys whose major concern in life is having beer and cigarette money for the weekend.

Ladies, guys will look at your pictures and MAY read your profile before contacting you. Tell them what you are looking for. "I want a man who wll take me for rides on his Harley on Sunday morning." That's very clear. If that's what you really want, why waste time with guys you don't ride? "I want a guy who will treat me like a lady and who opens doors for a lady." The guys who don't interest you won't bother you . . . if they read youir profile.

7. Get a second opinion. Ask a very trusted friend of the opposite gender to read your profile and give you some feedback on the impression it makes. I have done this before and you will get significant insights if you do this.

8. Keep revising your profile. As you spend some time communicating with other users, you will get some comments about your profile. You will decide that certain words or phrases in your profile are conveying a bad impression of you. Change it! There is always room for improvement so don't be complacent.

9. Guys, contact many women. My response rate for emails I sent was not higher than 10%. There are many profiles that are fake or were created by women who wanted to browse but they never subscribed and they are not active on the web sites. So, send out many messages but don't send a "canned" message. Read the woman's profile and say something in your message that indicates you read her profile. "Hey, that's really cool that you're such a big college football fan," or "I have a friend who recently moved to your hometown."

Guys, keep your initial email relatively short. Five or six sentences should be quite sufficient. Avoid anything that sounds too serious.

10. Girls, please respond. Girls, many of you will receive a message, and you then will read the sender's profile and decide that you are not interested without even reading the message, so you will delete it unread. As soon as that occurs, we receive a notification that the message has been deleted without being read. Imagine how very cold that feels for us! You can help to make this a kinder and gentler world. Yes, some of those messages were canned messages but some were written especially for you. Read every message and send us a reply, "I appreciate the expression of your interest. After reading your profile, I believe that we would not be a good match. Good luck in your search." How easy it often is to be kind!

11. Guys, online dating is scary for women. Understand that online dating is scary for women. They could be corresponding with Jack the Ripper without realizing it. Do everything that you can to allay their fears or concerns. Tell them that you don't want to be pen pals forever but you don't want to rush them into meeting you before they are ready. After exchanging a few messages, give her your cell phone number. Let her call you. She feels safer being in control of this. Talk on the telephone a few times before suggesting a meeting.

12. Your first meeting. When she is ready, agree to meet her at a public place that will be safe for her. A coffee shop on Saturday afternoon is a good safe meeting place and time. A bar at 10 PM is not. Your apartment is not a safe meeting place - not for your initial meeting - at any time. Some ladies may be interested in meeting you for dinner, but some will not, so give them a choice. "Would you like to meet at the Caffeine Fiend on Saturday afternoon or the Olive Garden for dinner Saturday night?"

When that first meeting has come to an end, don't suggest that she get in your car to go somewhere else. From her perspective, that is not a safe thing to do.

Some women consider the first meeting to not be a date while others do. Even if she considers it a "date," she may not be expecting a good night kiss at the end of the first date. Trying to get that good night kiss when she is unprepared may ruin an otherwise successful meeting.

Some suggestions for online dating

13. Have realistic expectations. Most first dates, whether facilitated through online dating or the more traditional methods, do not result in long term relationships. You may have 5-8 first meetings before you meet someone who is worthy of the investment of your time and attention. As is true of all dating, you will have many brief meetings and a few prolonged but ultimately unsuccessful relationships and it will come to an end only when you meet The One.

14. Don't let the process bring you down. You will encounter some jerks and rude people but don't let them make you disrespectful of others. If you succumb to that influence, you will have allowed those people to bring you down to their level.

I hope this helps. Good luck in your search for The One!

OlderAndWiser is a GirlsAskGuys Editor
Who are Editors?

Join the discussion



What Girls Said 6

  • I really liked how you talked about how online dating is from the woman's perspective. Most of us have grown up in an environment where we are taught to be careful. We've all be cat-called, followed, many of us have been inappropriately touched or talked to in some way, and we're on our guard. We're not on guard to a relationship, but to the unknown guy at the other end of the email. I loved how you talked about a public meeting and giving us your phone first. It gives us a sense of control that alleviates that uncomfortable feeling.

    • In my experience, trying to "get out of your own skin" and see something from the other person's perspective makes a relationship work much better. If I want a girl to say "yes" and agree to meet me, should I do things to make her feel comfortable or uncomfortable? I don't think it takes Einstein to answer that question.

      Thanks for the vote of confidence.

  • here's a suggestion don't date online...

    • Why not? I have done online dating twice in my life, once about 8 years ago and again earlier this year. I have met some wonderful women online and had several very satisfactory relationships as a result. I know that not everyone has a similar experience but, to some extent, the results flow from the approach. That is why I offered this Take.

  • Great take! I'd love to know your suggestions for women who almost exclusively receive "hey, what's up, how are you?" type messages. That's my main problem.

    • Guys do that because most girls will delete messages with out reading them so guys get sick of putting their heart into a message n time

    • Show All
    • @myTake Owner I understand what you're saying, but exactly what kind of response can I give to get the guy to really engage in conversation? I spend so much time perfecting my profile and would like to know if a guy actually reads it. I don't expect an essay, but a couple sentences addressing something he finds interesting on my page really is enough to get my attention.

      @sawno I agree, a generic message doesn't necessarily mean the guy is like that as well, but when you take creating an engaging and interesting profile seriously, it seems pointless when all you get is "hi." I'd respond to a lot more guys if they'd at least put in the effort to construct a full sentence, or comment on something small on my page just to know they actually are interested enough to learn about me.

    • @sawno That is how you would respond, but many other women wouldn't - and don't - and you are paying the price for their sins. When I was online dating. I never, ever sent out a canned message or a simple "Hi!" I always read a woman's profile and said something like, "I really like classic rock, too. Have you been to any concerts lately?" to let them know that I had read their profile. I sometimes spent 10-15 minutes composing a message, and 10 minutes later I would get a notification "deleted, unread." That was extremely frustrating and I can easily understand why guys would resort to canned messages. The only problem is: it doesn't work.

      If you want to get them to respond, reply and say, "Yes, I'm here, this is a profile of a real woman and I will at least reply if you send me something more than a canned message." I would have been delighted to receive those kind of messages.

  • Here is my suggestion to anyone, don't do online dating. The men have unrealistic expectations and expect you to be a supermodel vegan astronaut martial artist and spy all at the same time. And if you are not a white person you can just forget online dating all together. Most guys on there put they want white girl's only

    • I'm certainly do not have supermodel looks and I'm not white, online dating worked well for me.

    • Show All
    • Actually according to statistics Asian chicks get the most messages.

    • @kalibie I'm not surprised

  • I agree enthusiastically with every single word here, especially #6 and #10. You get out what you put in.

  • I agree with most things you wrote BUT sometimes when you do reply to let the guy know you're not interested he'll, no matter how polite you are, send you a very rude message back calling you names, telling you you are stupid and he wasn't interested in you anyway, that it's your loss and all sort of nasty things. And the thing about not reading the messages - if you read the message and don't reply what often happens is that the guy will message you something random again, and then if you read it and don't reply that time either - he'll message you again and question why you don't reply...

    • So what if some guy sends you a rude reply? That does you no harm unless you are truly a shrinking violet, a woman who faints when you receive bad news, a woman who needs a husband to protect her and shelter her from the cruel world. Are you really that weak?

      Some guys may be rude to you so that justifies you being rude to all of them? That means that you let those guys bring you down to their level and you are no better than them, right?

What Guys Said 11

  • It's a shark tank for the women all the time. The girls receive 100 replies a day and the guys have to send something that really stands out to get a reply back.
    I'll just stick with face-to-face.

    • That works well when you are younger, when most of the people in your age range are single or available, and you have a lifestyle that brings you into contact with eligible members of the opposite sex. For older people (over age 30,) they meet far fewer available members of the opposite sex. Online dating is a good alternative to the traditional method, if it is done properly.

  • We now know that Ashley Madison is for men who want to date fictional women.

  • Definitely the finest my-take I have read so far.

  • Your tips are very good but the irony is there is no real thing called as "Dating website".

    All of them are SCAM & FAKE!

    I would rather spend my 50$ with a hooker rather than some shitty website that has no meaning in the real world.

    • Yet I know some people who got married to people they met on dating sites.

    • I have dated many women who I met on match and POF, so I have had a quite different experience. I am currently dating a retired judge I met on POF. There are scammers and fake profiles on many of the websites. There are also scammers, leaches, sluts, alcoholics, and gold-diggers sitting on bar stools in bars and lounges. Dating is about sorting through the slag to find the nugget of gold.

  • Thanks , very useful information , i am kinda newbie in online dating though.

  • 10. Girls, please respond.

    Women don't owe you a response. If they don't answer, so what? Just move on.

    This is a common occurence on dating sites anyway, why the melancholy?

    Dating sites are a complete and utter waste of time... that's from personal experience.

  • I agree with everything that you have to say.

    I can speak with some authority here. I met my wife online on eHarmony. @GraySailorsBride and I have been married for 9 years.

    As an introverted single dad with weird work hours and an all male workplace, I don't know how I would have remarried without online dating. Can't say enough positive things about it.

  • Ok so what if I try numerous dating websites and had paid subscriptions on them and still fail and Im that unappealing to women and should just give up because being completely honest the only views and messages I get are from bigger women

  • The best dating advice for men when it comes to online dating is not to do it at all.

    • I have had some very good luck with online dating. Eight years ago, through online dating, I dated a pediatrician from the Ukraine who was a very lovely, intelligent, and caring woman, and I am currently dating a retired judge who is witty, clever, a genuinely good person. . . and very cute. True, there were some sows' ears in betwixt the silk purses, but it only takes one prize to justify enduring the competition.

    • Show All
    • I did not mean to suggest that the problem for you is competition. All dating is a competition, to some extent, as you suggest. Perhaps the problem is generational, as I am in no position to understand how online dating works for younger people.

    • The generational divide is that there are always too many older women and younger men (or older men looking for a much younger woman) and not enough young women and older men (looking for someone around their age).

  • 15. Be an attractive woman.

  • I personally see dating is like interviewing people for a job position (and prepare myself to be interviewed). You need to prepare yourself and act properly. You also need to assess the other person and see if they are a good match for you (or your firm).

    Sometimes you fail and sometimes you succeed. Not all of your applications will get a response. Amount those getting a response, not all of them will be an accept. Amount those that accept you, not all will be a good fit. So what's important is to beef up your resume and experience.

    If you are a guy who is fit, financially secured and has a decent personality then you should alright. If you are outtt of shape, jobless and act like a jerk, then I bid you good luck.