Online love, does it blow?
Got a question recently, “I met this guy online and I really really like him, we have an amazing connection and I want to know how to bring the attraction to another level, P.S. We have never met“
This question made me snort hot coffee out of my nose and while packing my sinuses with vasiline, I realized this would be an interestting topic to ask my fellow dating experts!
Do you think “Online” relationships have as much validity as “Real” ones?
Here are their answers in the order I received them
The uber cool Nando of Nandoism says:
I have a headache already just thinking of this. As humans we want to connect with people, and the internet has allowed lonely, desperate slobs like me the opportunity to create bonds with many, many men on a virtual level–and the connections were “real” but just not real enough to make anything concrete happen. At the end of the day, we want to take those connections to the next level–physical. How can you kiss a skype monitor? (I’ve done it–it ain’t pretty) How can you masturbate with your video phone? (I’ve done it–it’s messy)
We need to stop being so scared of getting hurt, of taking risks, and go for it. Instead, we are just sitting at home looking through profiles and letting life just pass us by. Online dating can be a connector that leads us to the next level, but at some point, you’re gonna have to shut down the computer and download your ass over to a real person. (No pun intended for the gays or the anal-sex loving population)
Online Vs Offline dating? I say, it’s all in the RISK FACTOR.
The hilarious Fish of Plentymorefishoutofwater says:
Are online relationships as valid as real ones? Don’t be ridiculous. You don’t have an ‘amazing connection’ – you’ve allowed your mind to run away with itself.
One time I had a great rapport with a woman I met online. It went on for months. Then we started speaking on the phone. It went well – I loved her accent, she adored my cheeky patter. So eventually we met. Within 10 minutes of our first date she complained about all the walking we were doing – reckoned she had arthritis. That wasn’t mentioned on her Facebook page. An hour later she told me she had depression. Bizarrely, she hadn’t dropped this info into any of her emails.
The night ended with an argument in the street, and I woke up next morning with nine abusive text messages – one of which claimed I didn’t look like my photos. I couldn’t argue – I only put nice pictures on Facebook and Match.com. Everyone does. Obviously there are exceptions – but I bet my story is more than typical. So, the sooner you meet up for real, the better.
How do you do that? You get your bum into gear and set something up. If the other person keeps making excuses, you just have to accept they’re probably a convict. Or into incest. Or geriatric.
The witty Alex of The Urban Dater responds:
I have tried, crashed and burned in LDRs. Utterly failed at them. Failure is an understatement, in this case, the same way that saying the creature smashing NYC in Cloverfield was sorta big and agitated. As I’m writing this, and I have to tell you the timing of this message is uncanny, I’m sitting across from two of my closest friends, Jen and Pete. They’ve been married a shade over three years, still marriage no0bs, by many standards. They met on Myspace. Yep! Myspace. They didn’t get married right away, though. They worked their relationship out long distance, chatting, IMing, Skyping and what ever horny singles separated by large bodies of water employ to keep the interest going… They worked at it EVERY day. I recall sitting around hanging with Jen’s roommate, listening to her talk on the phone, watching her type madly away at this dude over seas. I thought she was insane…
They proved me wrong.
I think LDRs can work if the following conditions are true: 1. Each participant works at it. Hard. Every day hard, multiple times a day hard (no, pervs, I don’t mean like THAT, though, if they masturbated like THAT it relieves the building tensions). 2. There has to be an expectation of meeting up and spending time together. One to two times a year, I’d say. From there, the expectation must be set that, yes, the two participants will eventually live together, get married, club baby seals together et al.
Then here is the new girl on the bloggin block and a skilled online dater Zoë Blue from WinkWinkWink
When I taught in Asia, I had a long distance relationship (LDR). Derek and I had met when I visited California during vacation, and we instantly connected so we decided to try a six-month LDR before I moved to California. It was a gamble, but a gamble that paid off in a four-year relationship.
It was our first LDR. Given our 16-hour time difference and full-time schedules, it meant that one of us would be awake past midnight and into the early morning. It was crazy, but we were crazy about each other. Time constraints were tremendous. We talked and emailed for hours a day in addition to our full-time jobs. With the time zone difference, we had to wake up early or go to bed late. Skype didn’t work very well for us, so we relied on Yahoo Messenger and webcams. We also bought hundreds of dollars worth of phone cards. But it was a beautiful relationship; we developed a deep trust in each other that I have never encountered since. When you fall in love with someone you can’t see in person, you need trust.
Just one note of caution, though: No matter how much you think you know someone through emails, webcam chats and phone calls, nothing prepares you for being with them. After six months, when we reunited in California it was back to Square One. LDRs can be a tremendous thing, but transitioning between long distance and in-person was challenging and it felt as if we had built two relationships, not one.
and finally Dating Diva from Tales of an Internet Dater gives this very wise wisdom:
I think online relationships can, at times, feel more intense out of the gate because you have their pictures, their hopes and dreams all spelled out for you on one page. People tend to say things they wouldn’t normally say face to face , which then often leads to a false sense of connection with another person. Sometimes what looks great in email and IM’s, even over the phone just doesn’t equal real chemistry in person. Body language, eye contact, mannerisms…they are things that are crucial when connecting with someone in a relationship. This is something you just can’t get with a virtual relationship. Before wanting to take this to the next level, my advice is to meet this guy in person, for all you know he could be missing teeth and enjoy peeing on walls during a date. Not that I know from experience or anything.
And last but not least the very cynical ME:
I looked out of the bus window to wave my forever good-byes to my students Maho and Hitomi. Strangely, Maho was alone, her mouth open, and her face was distorted with anger, sadness and betrayal. “What the hell?” I got up to see what was wrong and Hitomi entered the bus. She quickly walked up to me, her eyes deer wide and looked as if she were about to shank me. Instead she blurted out, “Mike sensei, I love you!” She looked away and started to tear up and without looking she lunged forward and embraced me. Before I could respond she let go and bolted off the bus right past a yelling Maho, clearly furious at Hitomi’s actions. The bus pulled away with me totally bewildered and both girls crying. WTF?
I found out later, that Maho and Hitomi both were “in love with me” and Maho was crushed that Hitomi had “stolen” me by saying it first. I was amazed that these young inexperienced girls had created an elaborate fantasy around their teacher, and had played off of one another in a virtual tug a war for my imagined affections. This insanity is no different than the fantasies people create around online lovers.
People are simply HIGH if they think they can really understand someone from their Match.com, FB profile or 200 phone calls. As of yet the digital world CANNOT replace a personal interaction and saying you really like someone online only is as insane as the guy that married his pillow last week.