If You Want a Long-Term Partner
Don’t Kiss Frogs Online or Offline
I am a veteran of nine years of hard-fought hard-romanced online dating. Today, I read a post by a fellow Austinite about how the “good guys” are out there. And sometimes, we are nice and cute and all, but just not the right fit. Call it chemistry. Call it ignition. Call it what you like. I call it not going for the gold.
Casual Dating vs Intentional Dating
What I think this young woman describes is casual dating. Yes, she writes about being a veteran online dater of six years, but she also accepts a date with a guy that she’s only casually into. Here’s how she sets up the date with the “good guy.”
Based on our limited interactions, I knew that it was unlikely I was going to feel a spark, but you never, ever know 100% until you meet someone in person.
Narrator’s Voice: “But Bonnie did know already. In her mind, the “unlikely” rang true and solid even as she was walking into the restaurant to meet her good guy for the first time. She said, “You never, ever know 100%…” She knew. Of course, Bonnie knew.”
Intentional dating is about not settling for “unlikely” ever. If it’s unlikely, don’t go on the date. Only go for the YES YES YES dates.
Online Dating Is Like Practice Dating
It’s great to get your mojo back by going on a few “hello dates” and remembering what’s what with this whole conversation and flirting thing. And it’s also great to learn, quickly I hope, that we can waste a ton of time on the entertainment side of online dating. Bonnie might have taken the “unlikely” date for several reasons. None of those reasons were good ones.
The only good reason to go on a hello date is when you are excited and intrigued by some part of the conversations you’ve had with the potential partner. In the early years of my online dating experience, I spent more time swiping and messaging potential women than I’d care to admit. I was intent on finding a new partner, but I was also fairly casual about my goals and standards of what qualified someone as a real potential.
The Three Extreme Skills Required for Successful Online Date
Only go for 100% winners, no “unlikely” dates. Ever.
Have a brief phone call before accepting an in-person date. (In 30-seconds on the phone you can get a gut reaction to the sound of their voice, their ability to listen, and the sound of their enthusiasm or ennui.
Always evaluate dates for their long-term potential. Any in-person meeting that doesn’t show illuminate a possible partner to go-the-distance is a one-and-done date.
If You Want a Long-Term Partner Don’t Kiss Frogs Online or Offline
Dating is not the goal. A relationship is the goal. If you go into the dating pool with the idea that “but you never, ever know 100% until you meet someone in person” you’ll be kissing a lot of frogs.
If you are not overtly focused on finding your next long-term relationship, by all means, play around in the online dating pool. Learn some skills. Kiss some frogs. But when you get serious about finding a partner, well, set your intentions and your standards a lot higher. 100% higher. Never settle. And never take home a frog to see if the first kiss was just a dud.
Here is Bonnie Barton’s post on Medium: The Online Dating Guys We Never Talk About
image: kissing frogs, available on etsy