When Worlds Collide

Twice at recent social events, men have recognized me from my online dating profile and, emboldened by the knowledge that I’m looking to date, asked me out. Hey, that’s great, I like a guy who remembers how to approach me for a date in person rather than via the semi-anonymous comfort of internet space. But both men have taken offense at my polite “no thank you,” and have endeavored repeatedly for a different answer. It seems as if they mistook my online presence as a sign that I was desperate and would accept a date with anyone who asked.

With the popularity of online dating ever on the rise, so does the world become smaller and your chances of running into fellow internet daters increase. But please don’t presume that somebody’s online dating presence translates into overzealousness for a date. If somebody says no, accept their first no and move on.

I’ve similarly erred in the collision of online dating with the real world. Upon
recognizing somebody from Match.com awhile back, I exclaimed, not particularly
discreetly, “Hey! I recognize you from your online profile! Nice to meet you in person!”

My ebullient greeting was met with express embarrassment on the part of the recipient,
who clearly hadn’t told his friend group he was dating online. So please remember the
lesson I learned; be mindful that people have varying comfort levels regarding their
internet dating lives, and one needn’t broadcast another person’s online presence, even if
one (ahem, me) writes professionally about the topic.

So remember today’s online dating tip and proceed with caution when faced with a face-to-face with a familiar online face.

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