Even though online dating is a wonderful way to meet men and women, boasts tens of thousands of marriages, has millions of singles connecting around the world daily, and has become the norm when it comes to 21st century dating, singles online still wonder if they need to take any precautions with it comes to meeting men and women on the Net.
Single women and single men are concerned with whether or not people are being honest in their dating site profiles. They wonder if the photos of the women and men they see at their online dating service are current or even real. And singles wonder how to stay responsible and safe when it comes to talking on the phone or meeting offline for a date with a man or a woman they just met at their dating site.
Many online dating sites encourage their members to be honest and responsible and some even offer services to keep their members feeling as comfortable and safe as possible. True.com offers background checks, for example; while eHarmony.com claims to screen for emotional stability; and AmericanSingles.com, JDate.com, BlackSingles.com, SingleParentsMingle.com and ChristianSingles.com check profiles and photos to keep their sites “clean.” Most sites also make it easy for their singles to report anything that seems inappropriate when trying to find a date so that they can effectively monitor their social networks.
But when it comes down to it, looking to meet singles at an online dating site is very similar to looking for your match in your neighborhood singles bar or at a sporting event, church social or grocery store. You’re meeting people you’ve never met before, and it’s important that you feel comfortable and safe.
And how can you keep it safe while you find love online and off? The key factor is to use common sense!
Here are a few common-sense reminders to follow to get you started.
Ten Tips to Online Dating Safety
1. Keep your personal information private until you feel comfortable. This means phone numbers and private email addresses and your full name. And never give out your home address until you’ve met a new match in person a few times. Almost all dating sites give you an anonymous email account which you can use to correspond with your matches, so this should be easy.
2. Create a free email account specifically for online dating. When you are ready to give potential matches your private email address, create a free account that you can use specifically for online dating. Yahoo, gmail, mac and AOL all provide free email addresses. Using a new personal dating email address will allow you to keep your regular email anonymous if a relationship doesn’t work out. When you do create a free internet dating email address, remember not to use your full name as part of the address.
3. Use a cell phone instead of your home phone when you do give out your phone number. This will allow you to keep your home phone number anonymous.
4. Take your time when getting to know someone online. Email back and forth for a while. Chat online. See how you feel in the conversations. Talk on the phone before meeting in person. And if anything makes you uncomfortable or unsure, keep it online until you do feel sure, or say thank you and end the relationship then and there.
5. Make sure you see a photo before meeting in person. Seeing one or more photos of a match will give you a bit more insight into the person and will give you another chance to see what your gut instinct tells you.
6. Make sure all first dates with people you met on adultfrinendfinder are in a public place. Preferably a coffee date, so that if it‘s not a match, you can leave after a short period of time.
7. Arrange your own transportation to and from your first few dates. You’ll feel much more comfortable keeping your home address private.
8. Tell a friend about all dates. Give your friend information about your date, including a photo if possible or a link to your date’s profile. Tell your friend when and where you’re meeting your date and call when you return from your date.
9. Trust your instinct about the men and women you meet. Do so online before you meet in person and then offline too. And if you don’t trust your own gut, get a second opinion from a friend. You can show your friend your correspondence with your new matches or even invite a friend along to meet your matches in person.
10. Enjoy yourself and stick with the singles that make you feel good about yourself. This is just another way of saying trust your gut. Just like you’ll know if something isn’t right, you’ll know when a match is right. And the singles that feel right are the ones you want to meet anyway.