Although the online dating is considered as the prerogative of those without hope of succeeding in real life love, some experiences prove that virtual space can be easily accessed by anyone feeling the need of love stories, other than the “face to face” classic pattern.
Opinions are divided over the “soul mate” searches in a variety of profiles rigorously ordered just like cakes on display; the sceptics may argue that online flirting is mere appearance without substance, while the more flexible devotees of the social networks welcome the opportunities they are being offered. Including when it comes to sweet immortal romance.
However, many believe that people who turn to the controversial meeting mediated by the keyboard and monitor are those affected by despair and continuous failure, whether due to their weak genes and consequently a minimum zeros salary, cracks in the self-esteem foundation, unnoticeable 6-pack and too little charisma, or for defectively presenting two or three extra characteristics than the lucky people with moderate features: inferiority complexes, few extra kilos and all sorts of unwanted clumsiness.
Regardless of the general opinion, who considers virtual dating as a refuge for the eternally unlucky sentimental people, not skilled or attractive enough to find their better half while skiing, at the subway or in clubs (as any “normal” individual would), this kind of approach of a possible relational beginning is however perfectly valid for any soul overwhelmed by the emptiness surrounding him.
And beyond the big disadvantage, always given as an example, of having trouble separating the well-intentioned innocent men or women from the dubious people loving science fiction and acting (as if there wouldn’t exist masks in real life too), finding “him” or “her” involves a series of interesting advantages:
1.-The looseness. While going out arouse real dramas among the key players full of emotions or pessimistic predictions, from woman’s severe care for the too short, too long or too trivial shirt, to man’s obvious insecurity, doubting his own elaborated hairstyle or his underdeveloped muscles, the great advantage of virtual dates is that they can occur anyway, anytime and anywhere (as long as there is a working computer and a good internet connection, of course).
Being independent of all sorts of behavioral or physical canons, gives a certain ease of communication which is very hard to find in two people in the early stage of exploring eachother “live”.
The very fact of not being persecuted by the obsession of something stuck in your teeth after the first dish or not worry about having accidentally exaggerated with using the most expensive perfume (especially acquired for this type of events), or that you completely missed using it as required by the moment, can give you a great feeling of freedom and therefore, a much higher dose of naturalness in addressing the other person who becomes the only point of interest. Two sizes bigger or smaller clothes are no longer important, nor the compulsive foot shaking tic… Because during an online date, the dress code is unfounded (counteracted by the t-shirt, jeans or even just underwear), premature financial “investments” (flowers, dinner) don’t serve any purpose yet, and the fear of messing up about paying the bill or at sign language, doesn’t exist.
During long distance dates, that awkward silence that may occur during the “dead times” in your conversation is also easier to manage, which is a substantial benefit, along with chatting in a familiar environment (your own home or other friendly places where you are used to spend your time), the pseudo-anonymity provided through the complicity of the monitor and the confidence that any unpleasant turn of events would quickly end the uncertain little romance.
2.-Honesty and lack of inhibitions. For the same reason of protection provided by physical distance, being unlikely for you to cross by chance the other person’s path (as long as you don’t want to), having an open attitude, a little reserved, increases the odds of success during virtual meeting than when sharing your ideas and feelings directly to a person you meet for the first time in flesh and blood.
Without going into details strictly related with the essence of the private existence (nobody puts his life on the tray without some prior preparation), the online conversations may concern topics that, in a potential direct dialogue, can be treated with indifference, a touch of taboo or inadequacy.
While in real world both men and ladies try hard to keep some appearances (of “Casanova”, “good boy”, “femme fatale” or “mysterious girl”, etc.), in virtual environment, labels are somewhat less important, benefiting honesty and transparency (despite the universal tendency towards caution and paranoia, which has categorized online flirts as vile attempts of pure deception, as if behind a peaceful and attractive profile would always be the biggest living heartbreaker or the most cynical materialist woman).
The explanation, however, could not be simpler. The effort, stake and investments of a real date (of time, money and energy) are much higher than those associated with a virtual date, during which people feel they don’t have anything huge to lose by being honest or outspoken or by daring to reveal exciting things they would only tell if under the influence of alcohol or under the serious threat of a weapon.
In front of the computer, people let go so much easier of their inhibitions, self-censorship and fear of being arbitrarily judged by the other person.
3.-Protection against disappointments. Another advantage of virtual dates is that it can be transformed into a sort of interactive test, less technical and standardized, meant to establish the compatibility between you and the other person. To determine to what extent it is worth for you to go on, with hope.
Exploring the field into the virtual world can however have its enlightening foreplay role, able to decide whether things are going to materialize in a real date with real chances of success or not, only when you’ll avoid to bring all the talking into a strong light directed exclusively at you and take every opportunity (only) to casually show proof of your ravishing charm, amazing intelligence and sparkling sense of humor.
Save some forces for later too, trying in this early phase of the “relationship” to find out from the person behind the monitor everything you need to give the green light to phone conversations or later to “going out”.
Ask questions, listen (well... read), share and resonate. Or on the contrary, say “pass” in an elegant and honest way. That is if your mutual interests prove to be as homogenous as water and oil are.
4.-Avoiding unpleasant “surprises”. Even if they are hundreds or thousands of kilometers away, when starting a conversation on a particular social network, two people know more about each other than if they would go out on a “blind date”, for example, a flash date arranged by their benevolent friends, tired of dealing with them being the third wheel all the time as at parties, go outs or any other occasions.
Thanks to a generous profile, partially or completely corresponding to reality, every person could go out there presenting something that infatuates, turns heads and quickens the pulse of the avid love seekers, whether it’s a theatrical smile, a hallucinating cleavage, a professional success or a soul nobler than old times aristocracy.
Even when it comes to those “rigged” situations, when the personal description is made of wisdom quotes of classics hard to identify, suggesting eloquence without guaranteeing it, or the profile picture is reflected in a well photoshopped penumbra, only revealing the deep eyes, but not the unpleasant moles on the left cheek, no one could be completely caught by surprise by the person they are engaged in a dialogue with. Especially if they are accustomed to reading between the lines or pixels.
Even if those who pose as rich, intelligent and beautiful (every profile emphasizes the positive, ignoring the less desirable aspects), prove to be more able and mislead those who hunt the praise and excessive zeal of the partners, they still have a slight idea about the look, hobbies, preferences and expectations of the other.
Which means that, unlike those who go out with who knows who they’ve met queuing at any institutional counter or those paired through the intervening of the preoccupied parents, the users of social networks are always one step ahead, knowing quite exactly who it is they are approaching (because even the seemingly insignificant details can sometimes be extremely important, and practice with experience gained over time by interacting with many people, is having its effects).
Therefore, when using the virtual alternative to meet new people you’ll know when you’ll be talking to a blonde smoker student who is also a feminist and when to a simple uncorrupted brunette. You will realize quite fast when you’ll be engaged in a dialogue with an unemployed guy living with his parents, endowed with many dreams but also with a quite promising baldness and when you’ll be talking to a famous doctor, with no obligations, humor or personal life.
Thus, unpleasant surprises can be easily avoided, except when you don’t commit sufficient time and a reasonable margin of error to the people you interract with, online.
Online dating has undoubtedly a lot of strenghts which, if maximised efficiently and attentively, can perform miracles in real life, giving you the kind of fresh satisfying relationship you need.