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“Hanging On and Letting Go” – Love Matters, June 2016

bb617d3b-b13a-46b7-8733-3edb7686e714We often hear comments about dating that are filled with frustration, impatience, and rejection followed by a desire to just throw in the towel. “That’s it. I’ve had it with online dating. The people I meet are not the kind of people I hoped would be there.” Women tell us that men don’t respond to their carefully crafted emails and men tell us that women don’t post current photos. Both men and women tell us how often people are not completely honest about either their age, their height their weight, their income, etc. This can all feel discouraging.

With all of these frustrations, why, you may ask, are we still such strong advocates of online dating? First, online dating is not online dating at all. It’s actually online meeting. Meeting someone online, followed by a brief correspondence, followed by a first date for coffee, for drinks, an ice cream, or a nice walk somewhere familiar and convenient. The advantage of meeting someone online is that it opens up a gigantic pool of resources. Where else could you meet so many people so quickly? Bars, work, family gatherings? Of course not. And this is why we encourage each of you to remember that the key to a successful online meeting is to open yourself up to new people and to keep a positive attitude. The research shows that the Ones we end up choosing as partners are 180 degrees apart from the those we say we want or must have or can’t live without.

The key, of course, is not to lose hope. For some of you, discovering a special someone may occur quickly, but for most singles, age 40+, the process takes time to succeed. But succeed it does. When one lovely woman first signed up with us she said she was quitting the online world. She had been online off and on for twelve years and figured it was enough. But she persevered, and two months ago, with her new profile and photos, she met a gentleman online. They share similar interests and outlook and are already talking about being in an exclusive relationship.

Persistence and patience pay off when you are online. The way to be successful online or offline is to recognize that your list of must haves will likely rule out a large number of lovely, interesting people whom you would like to know. In order to meet them, however, you need to be open to new people and to new experiences. If you set the bar too high, not only will you have difficulty finding the one perfect person, but then the key element might be missing, namely, you may not be the perfect person for him or for her. “Perfection is the enemy of the good” as the saying goes. And a search for a perfect person will most likely leave you unfulfilled. While looking for love, your expectations must be given a holiday and replaced with your curiosity and spirit of adventure. Who knows what or who you will find?

We all know couples who have met online and are still happily together after having searched for years. We know a great guy who recently told us that he was online for ten years, from age 38-48. He dated over three hundred women and was resolute about his search criteria. When he decided to broaden his search criteria, he met a wonderful woman, who is taller than he is and a different religion, both of which were originally deal breakers for him. She is calm and steady, the perfect complement to his high energy. He thought he wanted and needed a woman more like him, which works sometimes, but not always. This couple is now happily married with three children.

 

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