Online dating can be thrilling, terrifying, both, or anything and everything in between. Finding a match that has the potential to result in a serious relationship can be a daunting task for many people — before you even consider the stigma sometimes still associated with online dating. Many friends, clients, and strangers I’ve spoken with eschew this style of meeting people after years of navigating page after swipe after bad date after face palm. These discouraged folks are usually truly looking for a serious relationship. And, believe it or not, many of them are male.
Whether I’m out paying too much money for brunch with friends or at a park striking up conversation with fellow civilians, as soon as I share my career choice as a Marriage and Family Therapist, the questions start flowing: “What do you think about online dating?”; “Do you spend your sessions talking about your clients’ Tinder dates?”; “Do you see couples who met online and then got married?”
My respective answers: “Loaded question.”; “In some ways, yes.”; “Absolutely.”
One of the most common themes I observe in males who are looking for a serious relationship through online dating is a lack of emotional intelligence (EI). Online, just as in-vivo, a lack of EI becomes apparent through one’s insecurities and ultimately dishonesty.
In this six-part series I share — and explain!— reasonable, rational tips to help men (seeking women) succeed at online dating.
As I attempt to explain how men (seeking women) can potentially optimize their online game to achieve a serious relationship, take note that many of these tips can be used for anyone—straight, LGBT, male or female. The advice here relies heavily on honesty, boundary setting, effective communication skills, and realistic expectations. Blaming “everyone else” for not being good enough in the dating world (and in other applications of life), doesn’t help change results—instead, turn inward and do a self-check up on communication style.
Tips for Online Dating
- Part 1: Building a Better Profile
- Part 2: Setting Boundaries
- Part 3: Making Contact
- Part 4: Picking the Perfect Location
- Part 5: Presentation
- Part 6: Follow Up
Check back Monday-Saturday as we dive deep into each of these tips.
If you get through the series and realize that boundary setting, emotional intelligence, and mindfulness aren’t things you’ve touched upon in your life, therapy may be beneficial to you. Therapy can be a great tool to explore those factors and many more, especially if you’ve dealt with a string of “bad relationships” in the past. Very few people flip the lens around and focus on themselves in a healthy manner when things don’t go the way they want. No therapist will brush you off for wanting to turn inward and grow interpersonally.
Marc Fernandez provides therapy to individual, couples, and families at North Brooklyn MFT in New York City. Additionally, Marc is co-founder of a health and wellness blog called www.theHumanBluPrint.com, aimed to help people self-educate on how to be the best version of themselves. Give North Brooklyn MFT a call at (718) 785-9718 if you think learning how to “turn inward” may be something you’re interested in. Read more about Marc.