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the Urban Dater is a blog covering the topics of Online Dating, Relationship Advice and Sex. Check out our latest entry here: the Urban Dater - A Blog About Online Dating, Relationships & Sex

The anticipation of a New Year can be both exciting and unnerving. The New Year means mean new worries, new loves, and new desires. You can feel the apprehension…Here are 12 empowering resolutions to relieve that feeling and take the New Year by the horns!
  1. “I’ll be proactive.”

I won’t make excuses if I ever feel dissatisfied with my dating life. We can control how we react to our current relationship statuses. And seize the opportunities that haven’t been hiding but sitting in front of us all along.

  1. “Say no when I need to.”

There have been ton of good people that I have passed and a ton of not-so-good people that I have said yes to. The guy who’s a classic d, and by d, I mean derrière. The girl you feel no spark for. Or to yourself. When you know you could do better.

  1. “Keep healthy.”

Healthy body, mind, and heart. Enough said.

  1. “Embrace regrets.”

It’s liberating to understand that things won’t ever pan out 100%. And that’s just life. Call it timing. Genetic or environmental dispositions. Fate. Call it being stupid. Haha, but isn’t that why we love it? View regrets as Life’s nagging but well-intentioned reminders.

  1. “I’ll be open.”

If you widen your periphery, you won’t believe how much you can let in. Date outside your comfort zone.

  1. “Go steady with someone.”

It takes as much guts to go down a path the long way as it does to go down the unfamiliar way (Resolution #5). For we can’t predict the consequence but isn’t that the thrill? There is that pondering thought of missing out on something better…But knowing someone, truly getting them, doesn’t happen briefly. No matter how many something-betters you may run into, you’ll still be around a short-lived profile of a person rather than someone you have come to learn to love fully, steadily, and deeply.

  1. “Lose 10 lbs. Volunteer. Bungee Jump. Get promoted. Visit Paris…”

Keep having goals. Keep living passionately every day. And a partner will come as a great bonus.

  1. “Grieve long but grudge short.”

Heartbreak is inevitable. And if you’re not hurting, you’re not trying. It’s okay to mourn over a loss. And you can take your sweet bittersweet time with it. That’s the only way to heal. And if you want to rebound begrudgingly and go on an empowering revenge trip, you go girl! But at the end of the day, we need to sit before we walk, and walk before we run.

  1. “Say yes when I want to.”

So what if you just met this girl on a connecting flight? Yeah, sure he’s 8 years your senior. It doesn’t matter if he lives in Toronto and you in Tokyo! So what if the woman who you clicked with is your late cousin’s frenemy’s sister’s best friend? She might be your next, first, and last wife.

  1. “Play hard.”

I want to live life with vivacity. Youth is a mentality. While I’m young or old, up or down, I want to meet new people, learn new things, and have new experiences- both romantic and not. Nourishing the desire for human interaction and connection– what other lifeblood is there for a relationship?

  1. “Remember memories.”

What’s the use of memories without remembering? They say the more we reexamine a memory, the more it changes. Alternatively, I think…the more it stays the same.

  1. “Be present.”

The best gift you can give anyone is sharing the present with him or her. Give your state of being. Without the clutter of tomorrow or the past. It’s the most authentic way to see someone because it doesn’t matter how many years will pass, who are we really, but who we are now? Let’s not hesitate to be ourselves and take in others who do the same.

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the Urban Dater is a blog covering the topics of Online Dating, Relationship Advice and Sex. Check out our latest entry here: the Urban Dater - A Blog About Online Dating, Relationships & Sex

The concept of dating later in life rarely gets the attention that millennial dating receives. From apps and websites like Tinder and eHarmony, the dating landscape of those in their younger years dominates most of the discussions in the online space.

Even research itself has failed to look at the topic of dating in later life, despite its importance.
But all of this is changing – especially as research continues to show that online dating for older adults is on the rise.

In fact, statistics from previous years have shown that adults over the age of 60 are now the fastest growing group of individuals who are dating online. Since 2013, it is understood from numerous surveys that the trend of online dating continues to rise among people of all age groups, particularly for older adults.

Benefits of Dating Later in Life

Of the studies that have looked at dating later in life, women, in particular, have certainly acknowledged their reservations about dating. Despite this, they still view dating later in life as both very enjoyable and beneficial.

There are several primary reasons why people choose to date later in life: companionship, fun, and intimacy. Women also choose to date later in life to combat loneliness, among other reasons.

One study that specifically looked at the experiences of women who dated later in life found perceptions of dating varied for each woman. Not all women viewed dating as merely a path to remarriage – most of them, for instance, considered dating as a means for attaining a level of companionship that they couldn’t achieve before.

For example, women in the study cited that dating would mean that they would be able to dance with a partner, see movies, enjoy dinner together, talk with their partner and so on and so forth.

Overcoming Obstacles

It is important to acknowledge the obstacles that men and women may face when it comes to dating later in life. First and foremost, women, in particular, often have reservations.

The study above, for example, found that women often feared being taken advantage of either emotionally or financially.

Interestingly, all of the women in that particular study were able to cite their own horror story of a friend, or a friend of a friend, who had a negative dating experience – but, again, despite these concerns, they still viewed dating positively.

It is for this very reason that the topic of dating later in life becomes part of the conversation; these horror stories shouldn’t deter women from experiencing the companionship and intimacy that comes from dating later in life.

Other research may provide relief for those having reservations regarding the quality of their dates.

One study, for example, has shown that when it comes to online dating, older adults are much more interested in representing themselves in an honest way. They are also more interested in finding someone who is compatible rather than looking for one-night stands, commonly observed in the younger adult population.

The Takeaway

Ultimately, dating later in life offers a level of intimacy that cannot be achieved through friendship alone. For women who have lost their partner, dating can offer companionship, fun and reduce loneliness.

It is important that the benefits of dating later in life don’t become overshadowed by horror stories and that the topic of dating later in life gets the attention that it deserves.

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the Urban Dater is a blog covering the topics of Online Dating, Relationship Advice and Sex. Check out our latest entry here: the Urban Dater - A Blog About Online Dating, Relationships & Sex

As the cold winter months get closer, if you're single, you'll no doubt want someone to snuggle up and get warm with. There’s a reason behind that: it’s “cuffing season.” Introduced to Urban Dictionary in 2011, it’s the time during fall and winter when singles get serious about finding a partner to be “cuffed” to, or tied down with during those cooler times.

Naturally, it’s also the time of the year when online dating sites see a spike in user activity. If the cold weather has you yearning for a partner to cuddle with, then here is your guide:

1. Look Inward

Look at cuffing season as a time to reflect on past relationships. Be honest with yourself about why you want a relationship, and you’ll be a lot better off, not only through winter but also for the long-run.

For instance, if you’re making impulsive decisions online in pursuit of a partner just because you want someone on your arm at holiday gatherings, you could be making yourself more susceptible to online dating scams. Studies show that impulsivity is a significant trait of victims.

Above all, a confident mindset will help keep you cozy through winter (with or without someone else).

2. Update Your Online Dating Profile

With so many other singles wanting to be “cuffed” and thus turning to online dating this winter, a good impression will help you stand out. Make sure you’re not presenting yourself falsely, or you can bet that your first date will be the last.

Replace old photos with current ones that get appropriate attention. Doing something interesting in your photos is the perfect way to start meaningful conversations.

Also, consider the kinds of messages you’re sending. Be honest and approachable in your profile and your chances of finding someone special will increase.

3. Look Out For Scammers!

Cuffing season brings out the online dating scammers just like Black Friday brings out the holiday shopping sales. With an influx of online daters looking for someone to be cuffed with, there will inevitably be more fraudulent profiles to look out for.

Is your match a scammer? Here are a few signs:

• He or she is “out of the country.” International business people and members of the armed services make easy cover stories for scam artists.

• He or she asks for money. (The request might even come at a made-up sob story). Treat any requests for money as a clear red flag for a scam.

• He or she expresses love or affection too much, too soon. Anyone wanting to push a relationship forward too fast likely has other – malicious – motivations.

The nightmare of falling for a scammer or a predator-in-disguise won’t compare to the negative feelings of being “un-cuffed” this winter, so don’t skip these no-brainer online dating safety measures:

• Look at his or her social media profiles. If the information from one social network to the next is not consistent, consider this a reason for more research before continuing to engage with this person.

• Check the person out by running a background check. A comprehensive background check service such as BeenVerified.com will give you information about addresses, aliases, criminal incidents and known associates.

• Let your intuition be your guide.

Remember that cuffing season brings an increase in online dating activity, which means higher chances of coming across a scammer.

We hope this guide helps you have a Merry Cuffing Season.

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“Online Dating is so easy.” — Said by no one. Ever.

The tools available to modern dating audiences are numerous and they have grown easier to use as they have evolved simpler user experiences. Swiping is a phenomenon that has consumed the online dating world. Even more, traditional dating sites like OkCupid got in on the action. Tinder still reigns supreme, based on their sheer user figures.

Bumble has made a lot of noise since their launch with small innovations such as having women make the first move after matching with a potential suitor and more recently with their business networking features. Personally, I'm a big fan of Bumble and use it instead of Tinder. I've had a couple one-nighters from the app so I don't think it's necessarily any better than Tinder when it comes to the promoting the notion of “hook-up” culture. Maybe it's the colors or maybe it's just not a “tech bro concoction” in spirit, but I much prefer Bumble to Tinder.

How hard can it be?

Online dating is like playing life on level: FUCKING EXPERT. Put another way, online dating is just fucking hard. Even if you are what society considers attractive. Match, meet, repeat. It's a vicious fucking cycle and is friends to not one goddamn dating app/site user. True fact.

Bumble puts the onus on women to initiate contact once two people have right-swiped one another. As a man, I like that dynamic let's get women more comfortable with approaching a guy. There's nothing wrong with that, especially in our society where we are pushing so hard for gender equality.

Still, it's tricky. All too many times I hear Goddammit! I keep matching with men and they NEVER message me! from my female friends. It's brutal and no one really knows why that happens. I can hazard a few guesses based purely off of my own experience. For me, if I don't message a woman it's generally because her profile lacks details or her opening message is kinda lame. So let's unpack that shall we?

What makes for a good profile?

Bumble gives you 300 characters in your profile to help you tell the world who you are. Too many times, I see a woman resort to a list of things they are, things they like to do, who they want. Inherently, it's not wrong to do that. However, I do find that it is better to inject your personality into your profile rather than bullet journaling your bio. For me, and some male friends I asked, they would rather catch a glimpse of a woman's humor, personality, or wicked bad-assness. And with a 300-character limit that is hard to do but I only if you over think it.

Share a weird fact about you; maybe share something that made you made recently; maybe share some obscure bit of knowledge you have. The point is to be you and to keep it light and inviting. Weird is certainly okay. If you do get out on a date, you'll have plenty of time to share the bullet points that make you, you.

If there's a showstopper that you don't want to deal with, that's okay to put out there, too. Are you looking for only a serious relationship plus kids? Then by all means, put that into the profile. That's a good way to qualify a would-be suitor.

What kinds of pics should I have on my profile?

If you ask ten motherfuckers what kind of photos work best you're sure to get ten completely different answers from each of those motherfuckers. So what's a dame to do who wants to chat and date sweet babes from the internet all day long?

There are a lot of myths about what makes for a good photo but I think there are a few solid guidelines that can help with that.

  • The first image someone lands on should clearly show your face. Having your hair cover it up or having sunglasses fit for the Green Giant is a no-no. Just don't do it.
  • Should you smile? Should you be flirty? Should you be kinda blank-face? A smile goes a long way, however, people will find all kinds of reasons to talk to an attractive woman no matter what barriers exist. So do your worst (but I always advise doing your best and giving “good face”).
  • One of your photos should be interesting or mysterious, something to stir up a conversation.
  • If you have a photo of yourself doing something that you enjoy that's pretty cool, too.
  • Have fun in your photos, don't be afraid to poke fun at yourself. The crazy image is a good example of that. Wit and humor always win the day on the Urban Dater.

Some good photo examples (just my opinion there)

I chose these photos because they seemed compelling/interesting…to me!

On Messaging

Women on dating sites and apps are deluged with messages and it's a firehose of bullshit from most accounts that I've heard. However, there's always a few people who get through that initial line of defense, who float to the top of the pile with a rare mixture of sincerity, wit, and not being a fucking creep.

While I'd like to believe that common sense dictates that online penpals are a baaaad thing people still engage in persistent long-lasting back and forth message exchanges on the various dating apps and Bumble is no exception.

What to do when you match? 

Ladies, when you match with someone on Bumble and they interest you send a message. Do better than “hello” or “how are you?” People, it takes effort to stand out. Quality is what matters. So when you're ready to send that message, look at the profile, read it, study the pics and send a conversational message—a message that is inviting that kickstarts further conversation.

Within a couple messages you should have an idea if you want to meet. If you're interested in going on a date, put it out there. IT'S OKAY to state your intentions. Women, own your romantic destiny!! Don't wait for the man or the woman to make that move. You never know what's going on over there but you know what's going on with you and you can control what gets put into motion. So do the thing.

So what's the plan?

As a guy, I almost always ask women out. I find out where they live and I'll suggest some places near them AND between us (although, women always choose the place closes to them. Always). You can always chime in with your own ideas, too, obviously.

The venue selection needn't be hard but it also shouldn't be too easy. As a general and very personal rule, I will NEVER select a chain. I'm in Los Angeles so that's pretty easy to do. Your mileage may vary. But try a place you haven't been to or suggest a new place neither of you have been to, it's always fun to navigate uncertainty together.

Be safe and sensible

It should go without saying that when you meet your date that you do so in a public space like a bar or similar. Don't wane to pressure to go over to a person's residence for the first date (unless you're looking to get your naughty pants stripped off).

What happens if my date is flaky and just doesn't follow through?

Ah, yes. This happens a lot with men and women. You may get a few messages into a conversation or texting and then someone falls off the map for a few days or they never quite zero-in on that magical date date and time. Remember, Bumble is a dating app and not a trophy case. If someone likes you they'll let you know with follow through or they'll be fucking heroic at letting you know what's going on to assure of their interest even if they can't make the date happen right away.

 

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If the title of the article interests you, it's likely you do well with women up to a certain level.

Maybe the women in your social circle think you're funny and interesting. Perhaps you occasionally hook up with a few of them. Heck, you might even negotiate the odd one-night stand with a woman you've never met before.

But what happens when you see that absolute stunner? The type of girl that probably gets paid to be beautiful – maybe as a model, stripper or even a high-end bartender?

If you’re not spending a lot of time with these types of women, you probably see them as your big chance for an epic romance. The missing piece of the puzzle that is your life.

So you turn to jelly.

You wonder what you could say to capture this type of woman's attention. Even if you speak to her for a few minutes, there seems to be no connection. Her disinterest remains obvious throughout the interaction.

At best, she tells you it was “nice to meet you”, then wanders off back into the seemingly perfect life of a beautiful princess.

You may wonder what's happening here. Is it that you don't have the looks and status? Do your conversation topics not work on catwalk models? Or is there something a lot more subtle stopping you from moving things forward?

Underneath the surface

The simple answer is to treat these stunners the same as the women you believe you deserve. Resist the urge to try and stand out. Don’t put on a special song and dance for her

This is easier said than done, because she won’t always treat you the same as  average women do.

The typical average-to-pretty girl might be impressed with your clever pick-up line, with the audaciousness of your approach, with your witty jokes and stories.  

But the stunner has seen this all before. She’s had guys hitting on her since she was a teenager. There’s not one thing you can do to impress her. Instead, she’s looking for subtle cues to reveal who you are.

How do you react when there’s silence? When she gives you no signs that she likes you? When she teases, or even insults you?   

Can you stand strong in spite of this? Can you maintain good eye contact, physical rapport and a fun vibe? This will tell you far more about whether you deserve her than what you say.

But that’s not all. Do you get thrown off when her bitchy friends compete for her attention? When random guys enter the conversation? When she loses her phone, spills her drink etc?. Your actions in these situations speak far louder than words.

Be willing to walk away

The biggest indicator that you deserve the most beautiful women? A willingness to walk away.  

How do you react when she oversteps your personal boundaries? Do you call her out when she’s bratty? Do you question behaviour which doesn’t meet your standards? Or do you just pander to her because she’s a model/stripper?

A true boss knows exactly what he wants in a woman. It’s usually more than ‘she’s hot’. Rather than being hypnotised by a glamour model’s beauty, he’ll ask questions to see if she ticks these boxes. You should do the same.

Also, ask yourself why you’re so attracted to the idea of dating models or strippers? Is it just for ego, or do these women’s personalities typically resemble your dream wife? Have you even spoke to enough of them to develop an accurate stereotype?

Many strippers had troubled childhoods. The modelling industry is full of stress, competition and bitchiness. Come at these women from a frame of finding out whether they’re right for you.

Learn to love yourself

Your mission is to create a life which is super-fun without a supermodel in it. This will make it easier to speak to the most beautiful women with this mindset.

Have hobbies. Awesome friends. A life where you don’t need an absolute stunner to be happy. From there, have a solid set of boundaries that a woman must meet in order to become a part of it.

Finally, approach from a frame of curiosity, rather than a burning desire to impress her…

Before you know it, these beautiful women won’t be as intimidating as in the past.  

Interested to hear more on this concept? My book ‘The Thrill Of The Chase’ explains how I went from desperate loser to healthy dating life by learning to truly enjoy singledom and speak to girls with no hidden agenda. Click here to download the introduction and first chapter for free.

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Forbes Magazine says: “Of those who have dated a coworker, 42 percent said they had an ongoing, casual relationship; 36 percent said they had a “random office hookup;” 29 percent had been in a serious, long-term relationship; and 16 percent had met their spouse or partner at work.”

Love is a battlefield. And love at the office is a war zone. Here are 10 signs that your suspecting office romance is on the offense. Knowing them will gear you up. 1.  Intentions & Statuses

This can be trickiest part. Romance comes in all forms because of everyone’s varying intentions. She’s taken. He’s married. She’s his boss. He’s her work husband. They work in different departments. They work in the same cubicle. Before assessing any of the other factors, it’s important to understand this part foremost. Is it simply because of the thrill of something forbidden? How about pure lust? Is it a throw at the office’s social/political environment? What are his or her potential motivations to seduce you? And finally, would you like this person even if he or she didn’t work where you work.

2. Rapport and Familiarity

It’s important to at least get along with your colleagues. Unnecessary friction at the office will slow down an otherwise efficient and productive workday. So of course, rapport and overall good morale is expected. To tell the difference between just colleagues and something more, you really need to pay attention to frequency and proximity. Sure, he could ask you,” How you’re doing?” one day, without a thought, but if he asks you consistently every day or even multiple times a day, there’s room to question. Also, watch how close she is to you throughout the workday. Does she kind of always linger at your desk? Or she leaves and arrives almost always near the same time you do.

3. Body Language

There are exhaustive lists of what body language signs women and men display when attracted to someone. But I think the main indications to look out for are ones demonstrated by your co-worker’s eyes, voice, and posture. She will look at you way more intensely without breaking eye contact. Shifting between eyes and dilation is hard to miss. Blink rate, batting, and staring. His voice will sound softer when talking to you. Soft as almost a lover’s whisper. His voice might even boom sometimes just so he can grab your attention. It certainly depends on the context but frequent changes in pitch and tone are very strong indicators. And finally, examine posture. There will be minimal distance between you two. No longer will you be in that normal “professional” physical proximity bubble. Leaning in, brushing shoulders, and knocking knees.

4. Emphasis on His/Her Personal Life

When you have an office crush, the last thing you want is for him/her to continuously think about work and think of you exclusively in that realm. She will try to break out of that office role as much as possible. She’ll mention her hobbies and invade the typical workday with tons of detail of over what she did that weekend or what she did at home. Sometimes, personal life can be used as an effective gauge for the suspecting seducer to test your interest. He’ll mention his plans of going somewhere in the near future and only hope you’ll be interested to join him. And lastly, there will be some more personal discussions. Sharing of personal goals/news, asking for opinions/help, venting, teasing, and making inside jokes.

5. Some “Push-and-Pull”

In the course of this office romance, maybe one party might think they’re catching too strong feelings or alternatively, another party might feel suffocated by another’s presence. Either reason is a good sign because it’s an indication of influence on the other person. As a reaction to this influence, they might act out on attention-seeking behavior or simply try to avoid the other person altogether. It can happen subconsciously and consciously. If it’s happening though, and quite noticeably, something’s up. Calling out on the other person, missing meetings, and coming in extremely early/late.

6. Variances in Mood & Appearance

If you say something negative towards them or happen to be quite critical, they take it way too personally. And might displace their emotions to other people and their work. If you say something positive to them, they perk up and show their best colors and might even brag. Pair the fluctuations of mood with fluctuations of appearance and you got a sure-fire sign. Watch closely both how fast and how intensely they change as well. Did he suddenly clench his fists? Why did she crumple that copy so melodramatically? She’s wearing bright lipstick today. He’s wearing cologne tomorrow.

7. Interaction with Other Co-workers

A good measure of reading your co-worker’s feelings is well, other co-workers. They are reflections of what should look like a purely professional relationship. They can serve as objective comparisons. Pay close attention to how the suspecting crush treats you and treats others. Sometimes, they might use the other workers as a good cushion to get to you…He might be frequently talking to your cubicle neighbor simply so he can get brownie points. Other times, they might use other co-workers to attract your attention or make themselves be perceived as approachable.

8. Surreptitiously Flirting

They’ll flirt with you just at that edge. Just substantially enough to make you question, but not explicitly enough to call on it. Verbal and non-verbal. Lots of “accidental” and truly accidental touching which include: brushing arms, knocking knees, and guiding hands. Verbalized excuses paired with “accidental” touching are even bolder moves; This means smiling and saying “I didn’t mean to bump into you, there.” And when it comes to verbal flirting, there will be a lot of underhanded compliments that imply some sensuality like, “You’re so fit” or “Your voice is so rich.”

9. Love Triangle(s)

If the work crush ever gets overcomplicated, then multiple parties will pile up. With more complicated feelings, more complicated clutter will follow. Maybe he’s in a relationship that’s long-distance. She’s on-and-off with her ex. Maybe they just want to make you jealous. Throw some more co-workers into the mix and you have a high-stake office romance brewing.

10. Receiving/Giving A Little Extra

Way long after the work day, if you’re thinking about them, their behavior, about your behavior, that’s enough to suspect. This could range as something as mundane as him getting you that favorite cup of coffee or as elaborate as helping you shift that deadline so you can get another project done to as something as simple as that killer smile or that misty, solemn stare.

If your suspecting office beau displays all or most of these signs, it’s a sealed fact that there is something more than professional going on. Just trust your intuition. If things feel a little extra, a little like everything is an oxymoron, then yeah, you have a very apparent office romance under your nose.

 

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I have a feeling that advice for women dating online is written by men. By single men who want to live in a world where every woman waves them in with a large flag that says, “Hey, we are open.”

Do the authors of “be friendly, be sweet, market yourself well” advice actually know what’s out there for us? Have they ever come to a mailbox stuffed with dick pics? Have they waded through messages from men who can’t spell words longer than four letters? When an average woman complains that she’s “tried all these sites and found nothing,” she’s not complaining that she has actually found nothing. She’s complaining that what she’s found is completely and utterly unsuitable. A waste of time and effort. A losing ticket.

So if you are that kind of woman – with a profile on every dating site and nothing to show for it, though you’re reasonably attractive, smart and have a job – I will tell you what you are doing wrong. In a word, your profile is a funnel. I bet it says things like, “Hi,” and “Looking to meet someone special” and is generally wreathed in smiles and bits of sunshine. What loser can resist a kick at that can? No cost to them, no harm, and a chance that you might put out, after all. Or at least look at their dick pic.

No, what your profile should actually do is weed out the undeserving, while ushering in the ones you are willing to give the time of day to.

Make your profile not a funnel, but a filter.

Pick a name that screams “if you failed high school, don’t apply.”

For example, 3.1415926 for a dating site name is fab. Anybody who asks you why you’ve got numbers on your profile – tell them it’s your bank account number and never speak to them again. The man is too dumb to Google first and ask later, never mind recognize the digits on first sight. However, everyone who sees that name and runs to you screaming, “Date me, date me,” is guaranteed to be at least an engineer.

Pick an intense hobby

If you haven’t got an intense hobby, consider getting one. Women who snowboard, fly planes and sail yachts have a far more vibrant dating life. However, even if you only start seriously biking, running marathons or playing tennis, mentioning these sports on your profile with kick off the guys who spend their week-ends hugging a pizza box in front of the TV. Mission accomplished.

Books are major shibboleths

There are definitely books out there of the “sapienti sat” variety. If you happen to know the answer to “life, universe and everything” or believe that some people should be “disqualified from the human race for shoving,” use the advantage. The guy you’ll love to date will recognize these quotes. Or anything else literary that you adore – mention it. (All right, Dante’s “Inferno” in the original Italian might be a bit much, but who knows). Even if he hadn’t read it, he’ll know that in your corner, “ignorant” is not written on the welcome mat.

Point is, even if there’s only one man in the world who would share your hobby, recognize your quotes, and is exactly what you are looking for – that’s really all you need, no?

So why waste time on all those who are so not it? Why?

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the Urban Dater is a blog covering the topics of Online Dating, Relationship Advice and Sex. Check out our latest entry here: the Urban Dater - A Blog About Online Dating, Relationships & Sex

In today’s day and age, besides verbal and physical interaction, flirting substantially comes down to…texting. Not as well-versed as a letter. Not as natural as a phone call. But acts a huge component to how we carry and portray ourselves. Texting is like any other social grace and with it comes technique. Here are five factors that can really amp your texting game. Time sent

The time you sent the text and the distance between texts sent can actually have a ton of implications.

  • 5am- Morning bird.
  • 9am-11am- You’re the first thing I think about after waking up.
  • 12pm-2pm- I’m thinking of you throughout the entire day.
  • 3pm-5pm- The sweet spot of neutral texting.
  • 8pm-10pm- Romantic.
  • 11pm and after- Booty call.

Funnily, days matter too. Early Monday mornings are eager while Late Friday nights are admittedly a little salacious.

Frequency ties in just as much with the timeline of a text.

  • Texting everyday- I feel like we’ve established enough rapport or I’m chasing you really wholeheartedly.
  • Every other day/few days- Very interested and wants to maintain rapport.
  • Every week- I want to check in with you.
  • Sporadically- I’m faintly interested in you and orbiting.

In conclusion, adjust the time of the text sent for the desired implication.

Length

The text length should match the occasion and familiarity of association with the person. Stay away from paragraphs in the early stages of texting. It may cause participants to rely heavily on phone screens to establish rapport. Make sure for, let’s say, every sentence of text you send, you’ve already have had a paragraph’s worth of verbal interaction with this person.

Emojis, Images, GIFS, and other media

Emojis are a good giveaway to send a romantic message. There is a good upward curve that comes with emojis but don’t overdo it and text five flashlights and a strawberry. That just doesn’t even add up in emoji world. Use GIFs sparingly. Those are addicting! And…well, our conversations should sparkle in other ways besides the animations we’re sending.

Photos, especially of places or activities you have just recently been at, are excellent ways to enhance your texting game! It adds another element of mystery, intrigue, and personality that the receiver can fawn over.

Tone

Tone of the texts is everything. If you’re abbreviating everything in lol, k, jk, brb, omw, wyd, and sup, you’re very laid-back and non-committal. Whereas, if you’re texting very articulately with succinct punctuation, it carries a far more uptight, serious tone. You can bounce in between these two moods. Vary up your texting tone just like you would vary it up while speaking.

Gamechangers

Brain teasers, puzzles, “accidental texts,” inside jokes, screenshots, poems, songs, links, articles, drawings, quotes, typos, subliminal and/or suggestive sentences, and vocabulary. Tons and tons of good descriptive vocabulary that feeds the imagination.

There you have it. Once you’re done understanding more of the anatomy of a text, you’ll master it in no time. Of course, responses will vary but these are patterns I’ve found quite consistent. Exposure and experience is key. So warm up your thumbs and start texting!
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the Urban Dater is a blog covering the topics of Online Dating, Relationship Advice and Sex. Check out our latest entry here: the Urban Dater - A Blog About Online Dating, Relationships & Sex

As I was sitting in a local dessert shop with my older sister and grandmother, we started to ask her how she and our late grandfather met seventy years ago. As she tells her story with stars in her eyes, we could see that she remembers their wedding like it just happened yesterday. She says that her husband is her one and only love. While listening to her, it got me thinking as to why dating in their time was so simple and uncomplicated compared to .

Relationships in 2017 seem to be getting more frustrating and complicated than my high school math homework. But let’s get this out before anything else. Dating has never been easy for anyone. Everybody can attest to that, even my grandmother. Where she confessed that our grandfather’s parents were against their marriage. But what’s in the 21st century that made dating extra hard for everybody?

With the rise of technology and development of applications for just about anything, human beings tend to rely on these platforms that made everything easy. That includes dating. But on a harsher note, we don’t realize that this actually makes it harder.

Whenever we meet someone we like, we tend to look for them on social media sites and grab the chance at getting to know them without making the effort of saying even a simple “Hi!” That’s a the huge flaw that I see when I compare relationships today and relationships in my grandparents’ time.

Communication plays a huge role in our lives, it even plays a bigger role when starting a relationship or making it work. With technology, handing out more information that we can comprehend, we tend to focus on what we see on external values rather than communicating and getting to know them for real. Rather than sharing each other’s past experiences, we just simply go to their Facebook page and dig information. And whatever details that you’ve dug up, rather good or bad, you would conclude as to what kind of person they are based on it.

It's something that most of us are guilty of. Even me. As I got older and wiser (hopefully), when you want to get to know someone, ask them directly. When you’re already with someone, it’s always preferable to ask and talk it out.

Though this might differ in online dating where it’s a bit challenging to conclude that someone is who they say they are if you’ve never met personally. Whatever dating platform you’re on, whether it’s a dating site for gamers, single parents or Asians, it’s all a matter of trusting your gut and doing a bit of research in online dating tips.

Final thoughts

The usual reminder that I give to myself was to never enter a relationship unless I’m ready. But that reminder always goes down the drain. As I remember my grandparents’ story, whether you like it or not, you can never control when love would come into your way. I know. Cheezy, right?

Communication is a vital part of creating relationships. For it to work and prosper, the two people involved have to be open with one another and not depend on information from social media just to know each other on a deeper level. Otherwise, wrong judgment and conclusions would be the result.

We’ve only just scratched the surface at the dating scenes in the 21st century. There is still a lot of ground to cover, hopefully, next time we could cover more. Good luck in dating! Have fun and spread the love!

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Before this summer I had zero experience with dating apps (and dating in general). Tinder wasn't even released until two years after my long-term boyfriend and I had started dating. In the nearly seven years of our relationship I had played around on my friends' apps, but never swiped left/right, Bumbled, Grouper'd, OkCupid'd, or Coffee Meets Bagel'd for myself. Finding myself suddenly single at the beginning of the summer, and in desperate need of distraction, I dove headfirst into the pool of online dating. I started with Tinder because a) my town is too small for anything else and b) my cold, dead heart wanted hookups, not dates. That's the whole purpose of Tinder, right?

Tinder met most of my expectations: the initial “wanna fuck?” messages, dick pics, and an ejaculation video (why is that a thing?). I went a handful of dates, met some cool guys and some not-so-cool guys, and I hung out with a few truly interesting people (a radio DJ who runs a wedding business on the side and a former Marine/aspiring sommelier, just to name a few). What I did not expect from Tinder, however, was how most of these interactions started to make me feel good about myself. I mean, really good about myself.

Like nearly every other woman in the world, I have never been happy with my body. At a size ten, I’m labeled “plus sized” and I have worn glasses on and off throughout my whole life. I feel I give off the sex appeal of a dictionary. When I'm out with my girlfriends I am never the girl who is hit on, flirted with, or picked up. Ever since hitting puberty and becoming aware of attractive vs unattractive I have thought of myself as filling the role of “the fat friend,” who just sits back and smiles while her thinner, prettier friends make eyes with guys across the room. Obviously, I’ve had boyfriends, but they have always been my friends first so when they said, “You are gorgeous,” what I heard was, “I found you gorgeous only after getting to know you. I didn't immediately think you were pretty.” I know that having someone attracted to your personality is more substantial than them just thinking you're cute (my old counselor always reiterated that looks eventually “sag and fade” as if I didn't already know that), but I wouldn't hate having just one guy, who doesn't know me at all, tell me I'm attractive. Friends, family, and boyfriends I don't believe, but a total stranger? That person I might actually listen to.

This brings us back to Tinder (I'm focusing on Tinder because my current home is too small to use more than one dating app). On one of my first nights using the app, a friend and I sat on my back deck, drank wine, and decided who to swipe left and right on. With each “It's a Match!” we laughed and looked into the guys' profiles a bit more. After the third or fourth match, I said, “These guys are just judging me on my appearance, right?” My friend nodded. “So they are only swiping because they think I'm cute? Or are they just swiping on every single girl?” We concluded that obviously some of the guys were swiping right on every girl, but the chances of every single guy doing that were slim. We swiped some more. When I started matching with guys who were classically good looking (you know the type: triangle shape, buff, square jaw, etc.)…well, I won't lie, that felt really fucking good. A hot guy actually thinks I'm remotely attractive? What? No. How can that be?

Then the messages started. Some guys went right in with “you're really pretty!” or “beautiful smile :)” or “what gorgeous blue eyes.” Others went in for a conversation first before doling out compliments here and there. I know that this is how people operate on Tinder but keep in mind that I am not used to this at all. I can count on one hand the number of random men-who-I-wasn't-dating who have complimented my appearance (and I'm not counting the man who used to stand on the corner near my train stop and catcall every woman).

It wasn't until I started meeting with these guys that I wondered: Can Tinder boost my self-esteem? Two guys asked how someone as pretty as me was still single. I went on a date with one guy who told me, in Spanish, that I was beautiful and kissed me. Another guy, who I'd met up with a few times, blatantly asked, “What about sex?” I laughed like a loon in response. It wasn't the question that surprised me, but the fact that it was coming from an incredibly attractive, incredibly fit guy (because yes, I'm being shallow and only swiping right on guys who I find physically attractive––so sue me). When I was done laughing I said something awkward like, “Oh? Maybe? I mean, I'm not against it?” My mind, however, was saying: Are you serious? Do you want to sleep with me? Have you seen yourself? Have you seen me? Aren't there hotter girls you'd rather sleep with? I then had horrific visions of this guy, with all of his muscles and hott-ness, seeing me naked and realizing that I was in fact not attractive, but simply knew how to dress well. I promptly retreated into my unhealthy shell where I only sleep with random guys when I am inebriated.

Soon after Buff Guy, I hung out with a sweet, nerdy medical student, who was in town on vacation. We got along well, I drank too much trying to feign confidence, and, as is typical with Tinder, we hooked up. The next day, as we hooked up again, he seemed shocked that anything was happening at all. He kept repeating, “You're just so sexy. I never get to do things like this! You're just…you're really, really hot.” I don't know how to respond to compliments so I reflexively reached for my shirt. Med Boy shook his head. “Don't do that,” he said. “Don't body shame yourself. You are so attractive. Have you seen yourself? You are gorgeous.”

Something about Med Boy's insistence made my typical self-depreciating thoughts start to lose hold. Again, I know that this is the type of stuff people say on Tinder, but, let's be honest, Med Boy had nothing to gain by being so insistent. We'd already had sex. Why put in the extra effort? Unless…because it's true?

Somewhere between the casual Tinder chats, the handful of dates, Buff Guy, and Med Guy, my mind circled a new thought: am I attractive? I stared at myself in my full-length mirror. I tried to see what these guys saw; guys who did not know me at all, guys who are not being swayed by my personality, and guys who have no real reason to compliment me because I’m not looking for another relationship anytime soon.

Suddenly I'm starting to see it. Where I used to see unsightly lumps, hips that needed nipping and tucking, and a stomach I sucked in before turning off the lights, now I see a healthy, curvy, and––dare I say it?––slender body. I have muscular legs, hips and a torso that do the typical hourglass curve, and a stomach that actually does not protrude like a watermelon, despite my perception of it for the past two decades. Friends, family, and boyfriends have always told me I am attractive, but it wasn't until these strangers started repeating it over and over that I actually started to hear it.

So which is boosting my self-esteem: Tinder or just plain dating? Or are they working in tandem with one another because without Tinder I probably wouldn't be dating at all? Romantically, I tend to not “put myself out there.” I typically wouldn't dare approach a guy and try flirting with him for fear of rejection and humiliation. With Tinder, however, just matching with someone seems to lessen the fear of rejection. Whether you matched with them because they are genuinely interested in you or you matched because they’re saying ‘yes' to everyone––seeing the “It's a Match!” message eases a tiny bit of the tension that goes into dating.

Whether it’s thanks to Tinder or not, in the past few months I have discovered newfound confidence. When someone compliments me I say thank you instead of responding with a self-deprecating joke. When I meet a date for the first time, I work at being my usual chatty, sarcastic self, rather than being shy and quiet. I’ve flirted with guys, chatted them up, and even gave a random musician my number. For once in my life I feel like I am someone worth dating rather than fearing my significant other may be too good for me (as I have learned with my ex, that was certainly not true). Did Tinder give me this confidence boost or am I just getting older and wiser? I don’t know for sure, but what I do know is that I’m not going to stop online dating anytime soon.

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