Thursday, December 2, 2010

What Not To Do On A Dating Website

As I mentioned before I spent some time on OkCupid before realizing internet dating was not my thing. As a brutally honest paranoid I think I'm in a unique position to offer some feedback on what guys should not put in their profile or should not be said in a message. Here's what I have so far.

1) You can trust me, I'm the nicest guy in (enter location here)
The illogical nature of this sentence almost makes my brain short circuit. I encountered this, presented as a serious argument, twice. The first time I expressed an unwillingness to meet just yet and this is how he tried to convince me. Being me, I immediately thought "That's exactly what a serial killer rapist would say". I told the guy that by asking me to trust him because he was trustworthy wasn't really a point in his favor, in fact it was a tautology. I suggested not doing it again and he was offended. He told me that I was judgmental and mean then tried to guilt trip me into meeting with him in public. I stopped talking to him.

After that encounter I actually put on my profile under my list of Do's and Don'ts to please not say "You can trust me, I'm the nicest guy in (location)" because it was creepy and weird. A week or so later I was talking to a guy and he said that he had noticed on my profile that I had put that. His response? "I know you don't want to hear this, but you really can trust me. I'm really nice." I told him that he was creepy and it wasn't going to work. Then I blocked him and tried to reign in a panic attack. So much was going through my mind I don't know what came first (after the initial OMG RUN reflex). I do know that there was severe annoyance and shock that he somehow thought he was super special and exempt from the rules. Confusion because I don't think I had given him any indication that I even liked him that much.

So anyway, don't say stuff like that. It's creepy.

2) Don't start off your profile with "My friends made me to do this, I don't really know what to write... just message me if there's anything you want to know"
There's four things wrong with starting off a profile like this. The first is that this is not original or cute anymore, way too many people use it. All the ladies have seen the Romantic Comedies where the guy gets lassoed into doing something and while this tactic may work on the less creative of the female populace, it doesn't work on anyone worthwhile.

The second part is that it makes me think that you're a pushover ninny and you just do what people tell you to. Don't start off a profile acting like you don't have some kind of choice. You sound whiny when you say your friends "made" you do something. Wah wah, if you didn't want to do it, you didn't have to. If you wanted to, then own up to it. Or better yet, you don't even have to mention it because obviously if you're on the site you want to do it. It goes without saying.

The third part is probably the most irritating for me, personally. You don't know what to say about yourself? Really? You should understand yourself at least well enough to start off with some likes and dislikes. How do you not know what to say? Can you really not start off with where you are in life right now? You're not interesting or mysterious just because you don't disclose that you play halo for eights hours a day and are unemployed (that's my default assumption for someone that has a profile like this unless they specify otherwise elsewhere).

The fourth and final part is the trap where you are instructing others to message you if they want to know anything. Um, no. That's not how this game works. It's pretty straightforward. Like fishing. You put bait on the hook, cast the line and then wait for a fish to bite. You don't lean over the side and say, "Hey fish! If you want to see if there's any tasty food in this boat you should totally hop in." It doesn't work like that. Any fish that falls for that should drop out of the gene pool anyway (That's my analogy for one night stand v. relationship, get it? Too vague? Okay).

3) Don't be negative
Don't say stuff like "I'm really boring" or "I'm so lonely" or spend your whole profile talking about stuff you hate. This is a sign of serious lack of confidence, low self esteem and some prominent clingyness (that's not a real word. Why is that not a real word? It should be a real word). All you're portraying is that you're miserable and are incomplete without someone else and frankly, it reeks of desperation.

I'm not saying deny any of your faults, for the record. There are ways of putting a positive light on negative situations. Like how someone might say, "Yeah I'm overweight, but no one will love your cooking as much as me!" That's cute.

4) Don't do "tests".
Once again this is really illogical. The person that does this will intentionally misrepresent themselves to make sure you aren't. So in their mind, it's okay for them to lie and be fake, but if you do then you fail and they won't "waste" their time on you. This has happened to me twice. Bad things happen in twos in the internet dating world apparently. I started talking to this one guy because he was an Ayn Rand fan. I found out later that he lied about not only having a good paying job (information that he volunteered! I did not ask him), but he lied about having a job entirely (I'll be honest, having some sort of income is a prerequisite for me. Having income is a pretty good indicator of stability and the type ethics that I look for in a male partner). He said he lied because he was testing to see how many girls were only out for his money. I told him I was out for honesty and stopped talking to him.

5) Don't pull the race card.
I've actually come across profiles and messages where it was insinuated that if I didn't respond that I was racist. In the mind of these guys there was no possibility that I wasn't interested because they lived too far away, or did drugs on a regular basis, or we just disagreed on fundamental issues. If I didn't respond, it would be because I'm a racist. I'm sure somewhere there are a few self-hating (insert ethnicity here) chicks that fall into that trap to prove how "open-minded" they are but I believe that this tactic is a form of manipulation. At it's core that is evil and only brings me right back into the "OMG RAPIST" mentality. That's completely normal, right?

So that's what I've got so far. I'm sure I'll be able to collect more later and add to the list as time goes on and I have new encounters or randomly remember old ones.



  1. Hahaha. I can't believe that someone would actually pull the race card. That's just terrible. They should have an actual card made up. Ya know, like a business card that just says "YOU'RE RACIST" on it with a big smiley face, and on the back is a list of things that you can give the person/do in order to have the title as racist revoked.

    Very nice pots. I look forward to reading more.

  2. Dating websites have to be tough to traverse for a woman. I imagine at least half of the guys are crazy - like junk tucked behind their legs and making a skin coat-or looking to shoot fish in a barrel.

  3. @ Proud Gyspsy - It's ridiculously common really. I do love the idea of making a race card. I think I see some photoshop time in my weekend... Thanks for reading!

    @ Johnny UT - I think most of them are crazy too. It's why I'm not pursuing it seriously anymore. Of course by crazy I mean serial killer/stalker/racist.