Online Dating can be exciting and fun. If you’re still looking for someone special to share your life with here are ten tips for ensuring that you enjoy safe dating.
1. Safe dating means some people are just too good to be true
Some of the most charming and plausible people are also charlatans and rogues. Think of confidence tricksters. When you come across charming people that you instinctively feel too good to be true be wary, take things slowly and only use email to communicate with them for a while. After all the person you think you are communicating with may not be who he says he is, Proceed with a healthy dose of caution, trust your gut instinct and be prepared to end the communication if something makes you feel uncomfortable.
2. Safe dating means keeping your personal information private
Always use the dating sites own secure internal email system so that your personal email address is never shown. Also never reveal your last name, home address, phone number, place of employment, email address or any any other information in your profile during any initial contact or messages until after you have met the person face to face and you feel confident enough to do so.
If someone tries to pressure or trick you into giving out personal information you can easily stop them communicating with you by blocking them and if they become a nuisance you can always make an official complaint to the dating site which could well lead to them being banned or reported to the police.
3. Safe dating means taking one step at a time
Trust takes time to establish so take your time and tread carefully. If someone is worth getting to know they will respect the fact that they must win your trust in order for a relationship to grow. If you suspect someone is not telling you the whole truth then obey your heart and move onto someone more deserving of your love.
Take things slowly and don’t rush into having sex with someone much too early in a relationship when you hardly know them. If you both decide the time is right to be intimate then before doing so think of how you will protect against pregnancy and sexually transmitted diseases.
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention provide some of the most current information available about sexually transmitted diseases and preserving your health.
4. Safe dating means using your head
Although most online dating sites do not require members to submit to background checks some take security more seriously than others employing measures to identify and ban scammers and spammers. In addition some offer a video chat service that allows you to get to know someone from the comfort and safety of your own home and enables you to see exactly who you’ve been emailing. So take a look around and look for dating sites with these features before deciding which dating site to join.
It is also wise to carry out your own investigation by asking them questions and using Google to search for any online information about them. Don’t rely on your heart to make informed decisions – use your head too!
5. Safe dating means asking to see pictures
Most dating sites allow you to not only upload a picture of you but several and some even allow you to upload a video of yourself.
If someone hasn’t uploaded a picture of themselves why not? Most dating site members nowadays have uploaded at least one picture of themselves so why bother even finding out more about someone who hasn’t and of course may have something to hide.
6. Safe dating means it’s good to talk
At some point it’s a good idea as an alternative to video chat or as well as to make phone calls. This enables you to find out someone’s social and communication skills and of course if you like the sound of their voice.
For safety’s sake it’s best not to reveal your phone number to someone you don’t really know so it’s better to use the withhold number feature that most telephone companies offer these days both onhome or office phones and on mobiles.
Only let someone have your phone number when you trust them.
7. Safe dating means obeying your instincts
Online dating enables you to get to know someone gradually before meeting them in the real world when you’re good and ready. The decision to meet them in the real world is entirely yours and you have no obligation to do so even if you have struck up an online relationship with them.
Trust in your instincts as well as taking note of the facts before meeting someone in the flesh.
8. Safe dating means noticing red flags
Heed any inconsistent behaviour or any more serious personality disorders such as depression, anxiety or obssessive compulsive behaviour. Compare the description of the person on their profile with how they actually behave – do they match? Do they show any controlling behaviour or show frustration, anger, arrogance or disrespectfulness.
Acting in a passive-aggressive manner, making demeaning or disrespectful comments or any physically inappropriate behavior are all red flags. You should be concerned if your date exhibits any of the following behavior without providing an acceptable explanation: Provides inconsistent information about age, interests, appearance, marital status, profession, employment, etc. Refuses to speak to you on the phone after establishing ongoing, online intimacy. Fails to provide direct answers to direct questions. Appears significantly different in person from his or her online persona. Never introduces you to friends, professional associates or family members.
9. Safe dating means meeting in a public place
When you choose to meet offline, always tell friends where you are going and when you will return. Leave your date’s name and telephone number with a friend. Never arrange for your date to pick you up at home. Provide your own transportation, meet in a public place at a time with many people around (a familiar restaurant or coffee house is often a good choice), and when the date is over, leave on your own as well. Refrain from drinking excessively, as it could weaken your ability to make good decisions. If at some point you and your date decide to move to another location, take your own car. When the timing is right thank your date for getting together and say goodbye.
10. Safe dating means taking special precautions
If you plan to fly in from another city, arrange for your own car and hotel room. Do not make known the name of your hotel and never allow your date to make arrangements for you. Get a rental car at the airport and drive directly to your hotel. Always call your date from the hotel. You can also check out the location you both agreed to meet at ahead of time to see exactly where it is and to get more familiar with an area . If the location seems inappropriate or unsafe, go back to your hotel. Try to contact your date at that location or leave a message on an answering machine. Always make sure a friend or family member knows your plans and has your contact information. And carry a cell phone at all times.
Never do anything you feel unsure about. If you are in any way afraid of your date, use your best judgment to diffuse the situation and get out of there. Excuse yourself long enough to call a friend for advice, ask someone else on the scene for help or slip out the back door and drive away. If you feel you are in danger, call the police; it’s always better to be safe than sorry. Never worry or feel embarrassed about your behavior; your safety is much more important than one person’s opinion of you.
While cheaters, liars and frauds certainly can be very convincing on the Web, you’ll also find them in nightclubs and offline dating services, parties or even sitting across from you at your local coffee house. Despite where you meet someone, dating is never risk-free, but a little caution will reduce your risk to your safety when trying to find that certain someone for your heart.