While catching up with my ex-husband this week (the usual---kids’ plans for summer, etc), we got into one of our more interesting dating chats---funny stories, happy stories and the weird stuff. (Note: We were married for 24 years, amicable split and good relationship). As a woman, I always enjoy hearing online dating thoughts from the male perspective. As a dating coach, I wholeheartedly agree with his comments.
Never shy, just as he was boarding a flight, I said “Well, you’ve got a long flight---I’d love you to send me an email about what we were just talking about so
I can share one male’s perspective from a man very experienced with online dating”.
And, here are some of his comments and take into account he’s a former lawyer turned successful businessman with a very analytical mind thus it’s direct and to the point. His comments:
1. Negativity. This is the WORST thing a woman can do.
Anything negative, whether in profile, during initial texts, or initial call/date. Negativity can take many forms, but I see the most often in
· Listing of things “you don’t like” (some apps have different versions of this question). If you can avoid answering this question on a dating app, it is probably best to avoid.
· EVERYONE dislikes cheaters, liars, posers, etc. Is it really necessary to say on profile, in a text or one initial calls/meetings that you dislike cheaters and liars? Are there people who LIKE cheaters and liars? Do you also dislike people who committed terrible crimes? Do you need to say that? Some things go without saying.
· Use the opportunity where other people would list a “negative” thing or something you don’t like into a positive!! You don’t “hate cheaters”…….you are looking for someone who will be supportive.
· Politics: rather than saying “if you voted for _______, swipe left” maybe say “I’m very __________” In other words, describe yourself honestly if that’s important rather than making negative comments about people who may disagree with you. I have swiped left MANY times on people who I agreed with politically simply because rather than describing their political beliefs they instead made negative comments about people who disagreed with them politically. I don’t want to date people who do that even if I agree with them politically.
Often the negativity can be so bad, it comes across as anger
· Remember 20 years ago when we all learned to NOT use ALL CAPS when writing emails or texts because it comes across as if you are yelling at the other person? Well, lots of negativity or complaining in a dating profile comes across as if you are yelling. Does any man want to date a woman who is ANGRY?
· I’ve learned 50 different adjectives for cheaters/liars/posers because some women use so many words like this to describe their ex
3. Too much discussion about ex-spouse/ex-boyfriend in early dating
We all have “past experiences” (avoid use of term “baggage”). Use that as a positive!!! Our past makes us who we are today.
· Ripping your ex because he was a cheater, liar, secretly gay, or just an ass during divorce negotiations or with custody does NOT make the woman look better. Remember: you married/dated him.
· Simply say ‘we get along fine’ (which is what someone wants to hear if you share kids with your ex) or saying ‘we don’t really talk often’ (in the event you don’t have kids)
· No man wants to hear you still have unresolved issues (emotionally, financially, etc.) ties to your ex
At some point, if you relationship with you ex is more complicated, you may need describe it a bit more, but NOT during the initial 4-5 dates.
I’ve seriously had women tell me in the first 3 minutes of a 5-minute Facetime pre-date call about how their ex was horrible during divorce negotiations/with their kids/was secretly gay, etc. Is that really appropriate for the initial call/date? Any time that happens, I just terminate any contact with the woman.
No man wants the responsibility or pressure to ‘make a woman happy.’
· Don’t talk about how much you want a boyfriend/husband. Any man who hears that immediately thinks “she wants a husband” and the first decent man who comes along is good enough. No man wants to be ‘good enough.’
5. Old photos
Everyone wants to ‘put their best foot forward’ and that’s ok. And photos from 1-3 years ago that show some activity or travel (e.g., photo of you 3 years ago in front of Pyramids) is fine. But….
· Photo of you 10 years ago is not OK
· Photo of you cutting out your ex-husband/boyfriend is not OK
· Do you really think showing an old photo of you looking ‘younger/thinner’ is OK because once the man texts/talks/meets with you and learns how wonderful you are, he then won’t care that you showed a 10 year photo? NO---that exact opposite will happen---the man will view you as a liar and that you are trying to trick men.
· I once texted/talked with a woman who I really liked (I liked her personality, education, job, etc.) But when I met her and realized her photos were 10+ years old, it just made me mad. If she had showed me reasonably current photos from the beginning, I would have gone out with her a 2nd time (and many more times), but due to the photo “lies” (and old photos are lies), I never called her after the 1st date
· Women love to say they “dislike liars”. A 10-year photo that does not resemble you today is lying.
Remember a fundamental truth: Having your girlfriends tell you it’s OK to use an old photo, ‘tell the truth’ about your ex or something else is not a good way to judge your profile. In general, your girlfriends are going to be supportive of you, and that’s why they are your girlfriends. But what your girlfriends say is “OK” and what a potential date thinks is “OK” is very, very different.
Ok, it’s Andrea again. I think he made some valid points, expressed from an experienced 50-something year old male perspective. Thanks, Daniel! (Yes, that's my ex with me last month in top photo)