I was in a discussion recently about online dating regarding what some people are looking for. Although this discussion has merit in terms of potential market research, it should not deter anyone from trying to date online.
The simple answer is that most people dating online are looking for the same thing that they would be seeking offline (in real time meeting people face to face).
If someone is just looking for sex (one night stands and casual hook ups) online, they are likely just looking for sex when they go out about town to meet new people. If someone is looking for a serious relationship online, again, they are likely looking for a serious relationship when meeting people face to face. Then there are those that are open to both sex and, if there is the right criteria, a more serious relationship. However, when it comes to your online dating profile, it is important not to be overly concerned with what the rest of the people want (even if it is the majority).
It is about what YOU want, and knowing who you are looking for.
It is never about what others want, or what others would want for you. Your focus needs to be on what YOU want.
When you search the site, look for profiles that claim they are looking for the same things you are. If someone contacts you, ask that person straight out if they looking for the same thing you are. As long as you stick to your own boundaries, you do not have to worry about what other people want.
I coach both women and men for online dating. Women tend to want to attract as many people as possible and say things in their profiles they do not mean to protect their own reputations instead of saying what they really want. Men tend to want to attract women that are ready to have sex right away and then if there is something more to the connection, a good number are open to something serious (but only if they were already open to it. It has little to do with the women changing the minds of men).
Those people that I coached that previously could not find a match or could not make it work when matched usually turn out to have lied in their profiles to begin with (or omitted certain truths because they wanted the majority of people to like them).
Yes, a number of people are going to ignore your profile if what they want does not match with what you want, but that is a good thing. The point is not to attract as many likely candidates as possible; the point is to find the most suitable candidates. Sometimes, that takes time, and an effort of you reaching out to make the first contact. Sometimes it means you will have to wait to find a good match.
Yes, you may only be aiming for a small amount of the profiles out there, and then having to narrow it down to someone compatible of the candidates that exist. That is the way it is in offline face to face dating as well. Online dating is not some magical means of meeting more people. You still have to go through the numbers until you can focus in on the people you would actual want, and then find those who want you back.
So go for it. Go after what you want, instead of just settling for what you could get based on the odds, as the odds are the same online or offline.
Frank Kermit, MA, CH, is a dating-and-relationship coach, certified trauma counsellor and certified hypnotherapist. He is an author, speaker, matchmaker and relationship columnist for TheSuburban.com who appears regularly on Dr. Laurie Betito’s Passion on CJAD 800 AM, and other programs. Learn more at www.franktalks.com or call 514-680-3278.