I recently spoke to you about being safe when dipping your toe into the online dating world. I thought it might be interesting to share a few more tips as it’s so important, especially now we are all locked down and meeting all sorts of people online, to keep yourself safe whilst also having fun! I actually spoke to some male friends to find out the sort of things they see as red flags too…
People asking you to meet up in an area that is unfamiliar to you and/or away from where they say they live is a big red flag. Websites like the dating agency Kent can allow you to connect and then meet up with people local to you (once we are allowed to have socially distanced dates again of course!) Personally going on a date in Kent is my ‘safe place’ as I know it well here and I wouldn’t feel comfortable meeting someone in a different area. Knowing you’re surroundings is really important when meeting up with someone new and anyone who tells you they live in your area but wants to meet in a different area is definitely someone to be wary of!
It’s definitely ok to want to set boundaries and expectations when dating online, just as you would in real life but the general consensus from the men I asked was that going in and wanting to facetime and speak on the phone after one conversation is a little…intense. It’s definitely important to put a face to the name (and voice at some point ) but it’s also important to go at the same pace and trying to force someone to connect when they aren’t ready is a sure fire way to end something before it begins…
It’s great to get to know someone but oversharing isn’t just off putting, it’s potentially dangerous! The general consensus from the men I asked was that someone who overshares about their personal life too quickly is likely to be a bit more emotional and…well needy. Now I don’t agree with that sort of generalisation but it raises an interesting point, by oversharing too quickly you could find yourself giving private information to someone before being sure of their intentions, if it then turns out that person isn’t who they say they are…well that could definitely be an issue!
The concept of love bombing is someone who showers you with affection and love to secure your interest, before cruelly removing it, resulting in you becoming overly attached. It’s something that is cropping up more and more with online dating, people who make overly romantic gestures too quickly, make plans that hint at a future and commit before any proper ‘getting to know you’ has taken place. Lockdown is obviously tough for everyone, but if you’re living alone and have spent the best part of a year by yourself, it’s easy to be drawn in by someone giving you a lot of attention. Anyone who is giving you an intense amount of attention very quickly should raise a red flag when it comes to dating online!
This one came up with every guy I spoke to. Someone with no social media accounts, a lack of photos and no verified content on their dating profile is an instant red flag. Lets be honest, in this day and age even your mum and dad have social media, so if someone doesn’t have any digital footprint then it’s pretty suspect and there is a good chance they aren’t who they say they are.