When I mention that by mid-next year I hope to be living in another country, and explain that it’s because I’ve found me a guy who’s awesome enough to move 3,800 miles for, asking how I met him is generally the next question.
The simple answer would be online dating, (though I have thought that one of these days I should joke that I met him whilst roaming the English countryside).
I was lucky enough to have online dating work for me, although it was anything but an immediate success. Actually it took well over a year and 4 different sites (with varying degrees of success, or for the most part, lack there of) before it finally worked and I found someone who, for the longest time, I didn’t think even existed.
Most people who have tried online dating for any amount of time has their horror story about some person they encountered that made you question if it would work at all, but with my absolute terrible, plane crashing into the side of a mountain type of luck of meeting people though friends, I was willing to take the chance trying the online route would work.
First was Match.com. I had a tiny bit of success, and can say ‘tiny’ because there were a couple people who seemed alright at first, and compared to eHarmony, which was next, two or three matches was better than the 0 eHarmony produced.
I’m sure people have had luck with both of these sites, or at least their commercials would like us to believe, but from my experience, Match offered a lot of people but very few who really were in it to find a partner, and eHarmony did such a bad job matching you with anyone I suspect their method of matching people up is blindly pointing. And with all the hundreds of questions they have you fill out, you’d think they’d be able to pair you up with someone a bit more like what you’re looking for, and not someone who is anything but.
And neither one of these sites were free, and eHarmony was actually quite expensive.
….. oh sure, they say they’re ‘free’, but that free-ness almost never included seeing your messages, or who’s viewing your profile or anything that would make communicating with your prospective matches easier.
One that was more ‘free’ was Plenty of Fish which I tried as a response to the expense of eHarmony, and it’s free services that others charged for actually became a problem. Without having any fee to read messages, I found that site had an even higher percentage of men who were there for anything else besides a long term committed relationship. Getting so many messages at the beginning was nice. With more responses, it felt as if there was a greater chance for success, but once I saw their content….. it did make me want to back away…. very quickly.
So between encountering guys who weren’t looking for anything serious, or used ‘hookup’ in their paragraph about themselves, or chatting with someone who seems alright only to have them disappear without a trace as if they were abducted by aliens, it is easy to see how I got a bit burnt out on the whole idea of finding someone after 16 or so months. I was going to try one more site for just -one- more month, and if that didn’t going to work, I was going to give the whole thing a break.
Luckily for me, the universe had it’s own plans and Geek2Geek.com (or gk2gk.com) was the first site when I searched for ‘dating sites for geeks’.
Half way though my only planned paid month, I figured there was nothing to lose and started searching for what I really wanted instead of someone who was simply close by. I clicked though a bunch of profiles and ‘winked’ at handful or two, and with only about 10 days left, one of the few who winked back belonged to my now boyfriend.
And now, almost a year and a half later, we’re planning to spend the upcoming holidays together, we’re figuring out the whole visa maze (more on that in later posts) and get me moved there permanently.
I’m not saying online dating will work for everyone, but being patient and open to search though a lot of profiles when you’re not having much success is a way to have a little more luck on your side. Knowing what you’re looking for while being open to someone unexpected helps too.
So, if you’re reading this and trying online dating now, be patient, be open, be persistent, but most of all, please don’t bend your standards. If you know what you want, keep searching for that, because it’s worth being picky and waiting for the right one, instead of someone for right now.