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Online Dating Advice – Gone Fishing, or Is it Over?

Cyberdating Expert Julie Spira at BlogworldDear Julie,

I met my boyfriend on Plenty of Fish and we’ve been dating for about six months. We took your advice and both took our profiles down together as a bit of a ceremony and celebration after two months of dating and have even been talking about the future.

Last week, my friend saw a new POF profile that he posted with a different name, as he viewed hers while he was searching.

My heart is broken. I confronted him on it and he said it was an old profile, one he had before he met me, but deep down I think he always had two profiles up and that I’ve been played.

I’m not sure if I can trust him or not or if I’m overreacting. Please help.

Disappointed in Baton Rouge

Dear Disappointed,

I can feel your pain and what you’re going through is not uncommon. As a matter of fact, I hear this all the time.

Often when a man gets too close to a woman, especially around the 6-month mark, he starts to panic. Men are very basic. The thought of never sleeping with another woman again feels like death to him. It doesn’t mean he doesn’t love you, or that you aren’t the best thing that’s ever happened to him in the whole wide world.

The Internet makes it so easy for people to take a peek to see who else is out there, especially if he’s thinking about a more permanent relationship with you. In the bestselling book, Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus , author John Gray talks about the rubber-band man. The guy who gets really close to you and then has to retreat and disappear when he needs time for the tension in the rubber band to build up again. Sometimes he goes into his cave and doesn’t want to be with you. Other times, he pulls back because he isn’t sure of his feelings about love and commitment. Either way, don’t chase after him and ask what’s wrong.

Before you think he’s breaking your heart, give it a little time. A pull back and new Internet dating profile are both something to be concerned with, but don’t overreact just yet. Accusing him of messing around on you isn’t the answer. If he wants to be with you, let him know you’d appreciate him taking down the second profile, but don’t insist on it. It’s up to him to decide if he wants to continue fishing and run the risk of losing a lifetime of love with you.

Now is not the time to get even and put up your profile and start dating until you’ve resolved this issue together. If he truly wants to date others, wish him well and do so as well.

There are over 2500 dating sites  and mobile dating apps, so if you decide it’s time to move on find a different site to hang your digital hat. You don’t find yourself staring at his profile and obsessing whether he’s found someone else or not.

Looking at other women online is very hurtful, I know. It’s emotional cheating, even if he isn’t setting up other dates. But it also gives him the time to look at some photos and decide if you’re the one he wants to move forward with. Think of it as if he’s looking at photos in a magazine. I know it’s worse, but remember, your friend saw his profile online, she didn’t catch him in bed with another woman.

Please keep us posted.

Wishing you much love and joy in cyberspace, or wherever you may swipe or roam.

Do you have a dating question for Cyber Dating Expert Julie Spira?

FOLLOW @JulieSpira on Twitter and Instagram.

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3 Changes to Instantly Improve Your Online Dating Profile

Online Dating TipsAt Cyber-Dating Expert Headquarters, we hear complaints from both men and women about how every profile seems to look the same after a while. Singles get frustrated too easily, because there are too many choices. As a result, the searching process becomes so blurry, that they often just turn off the computer and go out to hang out with their friends.

Think about it and let’s compare it to selecting the perfect scoop of ice cream to sweeten your palate. If the choices were all vanilla, chocolate, or strawberry, it might not be that inviting as compared to Pineapple Passion Fruit, Cinnamon Buns, or Karamel Sutra, just a few flavors I can’t wait to try when I’m at Ben and Jerry’s.

So without further digital ado and minus the calories, here are a few steps you can do to immediately have a more unique profile, without resorting to posting skydiving photos.

1. Dump the Cliches. Every girl dreams of taking a romantic beach walk or staring at the sunset for a dream date. Let’s take a reality check and ask yourself, just how many beach walks are you going on? Maybe you’ll do so with a date at some point, but it’s oh so boring for them to read this over-and-over again. It goes hand-in-hand with saying you can dress from jeans to black-tie and want a man with a sense of humor. So if you’re asking for a guy who works hard and plays hard, you’re not one in a million. You’re among the multi-million profiles with those same overused words.

Solution: Nix these cliches now and replace them with photos and actions and about what makes you the girl he wants to know more about. If you’re stumped, ask a friend what makes you different and unique. He or she may remind you how you’re the first one out at 6am to clean the bay or love the fact that you volunteer to feed the homeless in soup kitchens on Thanksgiving. Replace the blue jeans to black tie cliche with photos of you dressed in a variety of outfits. He’ll get the picture and will want to see more.

2. Ask a Question. This is something that I believe is an absolute must on every profile. Remember that your profile shouldn’t be a monologue or all about you. You need to start a two-way dialog with your profile as a brief introduction about yourself. ?Your dream date must be able to imagine his or her life with you, not just watching you from afar wondering if he’ll fit it or not.

Solution: Name a few of your favorite vacation spots and ask if your date has ever been there before. List a local mountain you’d like to hike and ask if he’s ever done that before. Mention a rock band that you’ve always wanted to see and ask if you’re the only one who hasn’t seen Lady Gaga in concert. Mention you’d like to take golf lessons and have clubs collecting dust in the garage and ask if anyone would like to go with you to the driving range. This makes it easier for someone to write to you with a specific solution and answer to your question. It will instantly increase the amount of emails that you’ll be receiving.

3. Reduce the word count. Yes, describing your life story should be written in your personal journal and not be on your dating profile. Statistics show that writing a shorter profile will get more responses. Not everyone reads your entire profile and you’ll be lucky if they read the first few sentences. If they scroll down and notice a long-winded profile, it’s likely that they’ll say, “Next!”

Solution: Leave the novel at home. Drop the long drawn out description and reduce your profile by at least a paragraph, if not more. Remember, dating is about getting to know you over time. Details of your relationship and family history and listing every vacation you’ve gone on won’t leave room for imagination. It’s a digital dance, so make it a sneak peek into your life.

Make some of these changes to your profile now and cyber love will just be a click away. Wishing you much love and joy in cyberspace, or wherever you may roam.

Julie Spira is an online dating expert and author of The Perils of Cyber-Dating. She creates irresistible profiles for singles on the dating scene.? For more online dating advice, sign up for the free Weekly Flirt and follow @JulieSpira on Twitter.

Photo credit: Maxim_Kazmin – Fotolia.com

Online Dating Expert BootCamp – Picking the Perfect Photos

In this episode of Online Dating BootCamp, Dating Expert Julie Spira works with Lauren from Beverly Hills who is looking for love online.

 

Just how many photos should you post to your online dating profile? Lauren posted ten photos on her Match profile, but her primary shot showed her wearing sunglasses. Lauren explains that she likes sunglasses, but her stunning eyes were hiding behind her designer shades. An online dating no-no. Remember, women often dress for women. Men like the basics, not the labels. Other shots were blurry, artsy, and didn’t show Lauren at her best.

Watch as we select the best five photos to attract the perfect date, taking into consideration how many “likes” each photo received by the men who viewed her profile.

What photos don’t belong on dating profiles and what’s the magic number? Find out more by viewing our Online Dating BootCamp video.

For more on Online Dating BootCamp, visit CyberDatingExpert.com.

Julie Spira is an online dating expert and bestseller author of The Perils of Cyber-Dating: Confessions of a Hopeful Romantic Looking for Love Online. Julie was a very early adopter of Internet dating and is the CEO and founder of Cyber-Dating Expert. Julie creates irresistible profiles for singles on the dating scene. Follow @JulieSpira for dating advice and like us at Facebook.com/CyberDatingExpert.

Online Dating BootCamp – Creating an Irresistible Profile [Video]

Meet Lauren who signed up for Online Dating BootCamp with Cyber-Dating Expert Julie Spira. In a video series on YourTango, we’ll follow her progress while she looks for love online.

Lauren has a new profile on Match and has high hopes that she’ll find someone to marry.

In this video, you’ll find out how to create a catchy screen name, learn the best number of photos to include in an Internet dating profile, and how to describe exactly what you’re looking for.

For more online dating advice, follow @JulieSpira on Twitter and like us at Facebook.com/CyberDatingExpert. To learn about Online Dating BootCamp, visit IrresistibleProfiles.com

Julie Spira Named in Top 10 Best Online Dating Experts

10 Best Online Dating ExpertsIt’s an honor and joy to have been named in the “Top 10 Best Online Dating Experts” by DatingAdvice.com.

Words can’t describe how super-thrilled I am to be a part of this wonderful community.

Being in the business of love and helping singles find love on the Internet since 1994 is something I’m so proud of. Every day I hold the digital hands of singles and help them ease into taking their relationships from online to offline. I give them the strength and confidence to start over when their relationships run their course and I feature their success stories in our Cyber Love Story of the Week.

Many thanks to the Editors at DatingAdvice.com for acknowledging my passion in this industry that I love so very much and for selecting me as their featured Online Dating Expert. I invite you to sign up for our Free Weekly Flirt newsletter for more online dating advice and to stay in touch.

I thank you from the very bottom of my heart and as always, I wish you much love and joy in cyberspace, or wherever you may roam.

Follow @JulieSpira on Twitter

Cyber Love Story – Rasheda and Brandon

Cyber Love Story - Rasheeda and BrandonMeet Rasheda and Brandon, who found love on the free online dating site OKCupid.

Rasheda was ready to give up on Internet dating, but decided to return to OkCupid, where she met Brandon in August of 2012.

After their first date, Rasheda thought Brandon was a really “nice” guy.

Brandon managed to catch her attention by sending her a bouquet of flowers to her office on the Monday following their first date.  Continuing to be the good guy, he would send Rasheeda e-cards and suggest interesting dates.

However, after a month, Rasheda decided that Brandon belonged in the “friend zone” (ouch). They stopped dating during the month of October, while she decided whether to date him or another guy.

Fortunately, she came to her senses before losing him completely. The two reconnected in November and went on a romantic date to the Opera. Afterwards, they went dancing, where she realized that she was falling for him.

Brandon invited Rasheda over for Thanksgiving dinner and they’ve been together ever since. The two are planning a romantic trip to the Bahamas this spring.

Congratulations to Rasheda and Brandon who prove that nice guys don?t always finish last and that patience is a virtue.

Do you have an online dating story to share?

Share your Cyber Love Story with us!

Submit Your Online Dating Stories

Julie Spira is America’s top online dating expert and founder of CyberDatingExpert.com. Julie’s the bestselling author of The Perils of Cyber-Dating and creates irresistible profiles for singles on the dating scene. For more dating advice, sign up for our Weekly Flirt newsletter and connect at Facebook.com/CyberDatingExpert and on Twitter @JulieSpira.

Read More Cyber Love Stories

The Digital Breakup ? Is it Wrong?

The Digital BreakupDid you know that more than 30% of relationships have a digital ending?

According to a survey by Lab 42, 1/3 of people are breaking up via text, email, and on Facebook.

I strongly believe that if you?re in an intimate relationship or if you?ve committed to dating someone exclusively, calling it quits should happen in person.

Here are six common and inappropriate ways couples are breaking up in a digital world.

The Direct and Unilateral Breakup

1. Text Message. Seeing a text message saying, “It’s not you, it’s me” is inconsiderate. It also shows signs of disrespect and cowardly behavior. If you can type on the phone, you should be able to pick up the phone and dial it as well.

2. Email. The “Dear John” letter of years ago has been replaced with an email saying it’s over. Do you really want to go down in history as the person who sent a digital “Dear John” letter? Type your letter and send it to yourself. Read it the next morning before calling it quits. You might feel different about it the next day and can possibly save your relationship. Remember. An email can be and will be forwarded, shared, or possibly end up in a blog post or magazine.

3. The fax. Although fax machines are as obsolete as a rotary-dial phone, there still are cases where couples are filing for divorce via fax, with one party being in control and the recipient being shattered by the news.

The Passive-Aggressive Breakup

4.Reactivating an Online Dating Profile. If your significant other disappears for a few days and doesn’t return your calls, it might be time to see if they’ve reactivated their online dating profile. Even if it’s active for an hour or a day, it’s likely that this will get noticed by one of your friends. Is it worth losing a relationship over? I say no.

5. Facebook. Relationships are starting and ending on Facebook. I enjoy sharing the success stories on FacebookLoveStories.com, but cringe when I see someone changing their status relationship to ‘Single’ without discussing it with their partner. Worse yet, a friend my see your sweetheart in the arms of another in a photo proudly displayed on his or her Facebook page.

6. The Disappearing Act. Magicians should be left for the magic show, not for your relationship. If your needs aren’t being met or if you’ve found someone else, don’t leave someone hanging and just stop calling. It’s not over until both people realize where they stand. Dont disappear on someone you once loved when you?ve unilaterally decided it was time to move on.

At the end of the digital day, you should treat people the way that you want to be treated. Don’t go down in history as being a digital dumper. Often the love you have with the person you’ve invested the time with is worth saving and will be worth its weight in gold, compared to the heartbreak you might be creating.

Have you ever ended a relationship digitally? Did someone ever dump you in an email or text? Would you pull a disappearing act to avoid a confrontation?

Your comments are welcome.

Julie Spira is a top online dating expert and bestselling author. She creates irresistible profiles for singles on the dating scene. For more online dating advice, sign up for the Weekly Flirt newsletter, follow @JulieSpira on Twitter and at Facebook.com/CyberDatingExpert.

Photo credit: Pavel Ignatov – Fotolia.com

Is Flirting Online Considered Cheating?

Is flirting online considered cheatingImagine this scenario. You met him or her online. You fell in love online. You fell madly in love and took your profiles down together to live your offline life.

The end. Or is it?

When a former boyfriend decided to take his profile down so we could date exclusively, he was excited about our future. He was marriage-minded, gave me an office in his home with a beautiful view so I could write, we met each others’ families, and we were both excited about the possibilities of our new relationship going the distance. It was his decision to take his profiles down. He asked me for my help in removing his online dating profiles from OkCupid, Plenty of Fish, and Senior People Meet. It was a ritual and a milestone in our relationship and he was absolutely sure this is what he wanted to do. But there was a piece of him that still felt uneasy about it.

When a man makes a relationship milestone, he wonders if this is the last woman he’ll ever make love to or ever touch. He wonders if other women would still want him if the relationship doesn’t turn out. My guy was going through a major digital withdrawal and his ego was taking over. He started telling me that his inbox was feeling lonely and he wasn’t getting emails from women anymore. After spending six solid months logging onto three dating sites every day, he had mixed feelings about the situation and felt a bit of a loss in not hearing from admiring women.

Before my guy made the big digital commitment, he would log on to view who wrote to him, but would never write back. He was curious. It was an ego decision, but he wanted to make sure that I knew where he stood and that he didn’t want to date others. I smiled and told him to take his time. There was no rush.

Typically when someone has spent a lot of time on online dating sites, it’s hard to make the final break. They know in the back of their minds if it doesn’t work out, they can go back online at any time and go fishing again for a new date or a mate.

I’ve watched both men and women put up secret profiles or reactivate their profiles temporarily after a bump in the road in their relationships. While this is normal, it’s incredibly hurtful. As big as the digital dating landscape is, there are too many friends and family members who will notice the profile, even if it’s up for a few days or so. They will bust you. It will blow up. It might not be recoverable. Is it worth the risk?

In my book, The Perils of Cyber-Dating: Confessions of a Hopeful Romantic Looking for Love Online, I describe the serial online dater or online dating addict in chapter 12. This man said, “I love you,” while on a romantic vacation, while simultaneously logging onto Match.com for hours every night to talk to other women. This, my friends, is emotional cheating.  Even if he never took the relationships offline, this act was so hurtful that it resulted in the ending of the relationship with the woman he really did love.

Often a man or woman might go fishing just before making a major commitment to make sure he or she is not making the wrong decision. More often than not, it’s for the ego. We all want to know that we’re loved. It’s so powerful, isn’t it? But is it worth losing your relationship over? Is it considered cheating?

My online dating advice is: If you’re in a committed relationship, I urge you not to blow it by flirting with a former love interest on Facebook or reactivating your online dating profile while checking out your options. If your significant other finds out you’ve reactivated your profile without discussing it with them, don’t be surprised if they either leave, or start withdrawing from the relationship. You just may lose the person you love so much.

If you’ve agreed to be exclusive or “facebook official,” communicate offline with the person you?re in a relationship with, instead of flirting online and looking for other options. If a relationship runs its course, be a grown up about it. Agree together that it’s time to move on, or talk about what needs of yours need addressing to move together to the next stage. Often the love you have with the person you’ve invested the time with is worth saving and will be worth its weight in gold, compared to the heartbreak you might be creating.

Your comments and thoughts are welcome.

Wishing you much love and joy in cyberspace, or wherever you may roam.

Julie Spira is a top online dating expert and founder of CyberDatingExpert.com. She’s the author of the bestseller, The Perils of Cyber-Dating: Confessions of a Hopeful Romantic Looking for Love Online and creates irresistible profiles for singles on the dating scene. For more dating advice, follow @JulieSpira on Twitter and at Facebook.com/CyberDatingExpert.

Photo credit: Lasse Kristensen – Fotolia.com

Cyber Love Links

Cyber Love Links

As the week comes to an end, it’s time to share this week’s Cyber Love Links–Links to Love, When You’re in the Mood for Love. From online dating advice to meeting IRL, we’ve got you covered.

First, our thanks to Carly Cylinder who included us in her story on Huffington Post,? So You’re on the Wedding D List: Now What?

Our friends at Her Campus quoted us in, On-Again, Off-Again Relationships: Can They Work? Cyber-Dating Expert friend Jenna Birch quoted us in her Answers from a Hot Girl Column to the guy who was frustrated with being the good guy. Check out Why Don’t My Compliments Work on Women? Yes guys, if they’re cheesy, the girls run the other way. Fashionista included our tips in Single All the Way? Expert Fashion Tips for Online Dating. This will help you both with your profile and on that very important first date. We were over-the-moon honored to be included in the Top 100 Blogs by Relationship Experts, so a huge thank you

On Twitter, we shared and loved Online Dating: Google’s Most Searched Singles Sites Of 2012 on Huffington Post Women. Our friends at YourTango posted, 5 Ways Google Affects Our Relationships, Fit Sugar came up with 9 ways to de-stress this holiday season, including nibbling on dark chocolate and lighting candles. On Woman’s Day, we shared, 10 Ways to Navigating the Holidays Alone.? Our new friends at Like Bright came up with their 10 Best Dating Sites list, filled with niche sites to check out for a chuckle and a date.

If you missed our Weekly Flirt, it can be found here.

Wishing you much love and joy in cyberspace, or wherever you may roam.

Julie Spira is an online dating expert, bestselling author and founder of CyberDatingExpert.com. She creates irresistible profiles for singles on the dating scene. For more dating advice, sign up for the Weekly Flirt, follow @JulieSpira on Twitter and at Facebook.com/CyberDatingExpert.

10 New Rules for Online Dating

10 New Rules for DatingWith many new singles and especially boomers joining online dating sites for the first time, the process can be overwhelming at times. Add to it the thousands of newer, niche online dating sites that have popped up including dating men with a mustache to finding singles who ride subways, it?s time to put a few new rules on the table.

In a recent issue of Bottom Line Personal magazine, I wrote an in-depth article on how to avoid the most common mistakes that Internet daters in their 40s to 60s make; resulting in either a bad experience with online dating or getting stuck in the serial dating syndrome.

Here are ten tips to consider while looking for love online.

1. Leave the novel behind.? Too often I see profiles that resemble a novel rather than a brief peek at your personality. The word count is so high that it?s a huge turn-off to daters. When in doubt, keep your profile short and don?t focus on your entire life story.

2. Don’t expect instant chemistry.? When I work with both single men and women, it?s hard to get them to look past the photos. Sure we all have a ?type.? Some prefer blondes, others brunettes. But if you don?t have instant email chemistry, don?t toss your online date away. Many men just aren?t computer savvy and don?t ?give good emails.? Hop on a phone call to see if there?s phone chemistry. If so, put a date on the calendar. It?s time to meet in-real-life.

3. Be careful of the instant relationship. The need to love and be loved is so powerful, that often singles project to the future too fast. As soon as you think he or she may be the one, it may already be over. Avoid rushing to become relationship exclusive after one or two dates. The best things in life are worth waiting for and the courting phase is one you?ll want to remember, not rush into.

4. Talk about your life together. Rather than describing your perfect personality, let potential dates get a glimpse into what their life would be like if they were your partner. Describe interesting things that you can do together and your date will be able to imagine themselves in your life, as well as in your arms.

5. Don’t be a downer. Don?t be too judgmental or you will appear like a Debbie or Donny Downer. Leave the negative adjectives out of your profile and focus on more positive statements.

6. Don?t post too many family photos.? Having strong family values is looked upon as a positive trait. Even if your kids are on your Facebook profile,? your children or grandchildren shouldn’t be exploited on your dating profile. Do mention however, how important they are to you.

7. Leave the cleavage behind. We know that men undress you with their eyes, but do you need to show sexy shots to get their attention? I say no. Showing too much cleavage will make him assume you?ve got bedroom eyes and might not be worth more than a hook-up.

8. Keep your personal information private. We know it?s rare to get to a second or third date. With that in mind, don?t give out your home phone number or work email address. The last thing you?ll want is a jilted digital date showing up on your doorstep; or worse, a cyber-stalker. I recommend visiting Google and creating a Gmail account for dating along free Google voice account. You?ll get a unique phone number, which you can change. If you need to block someone who is harassing you, it?s easier than changing your mobile phone number.

9. Leave the ex behind. Often singles get nervous on a first date. Unlike a job interview, they haven?t practiced their list of questions to master the date. As a result, falling back on asking questions about his or her previous relationships or marriages will take you down a path you?ll wish you hadn?t brought up. If you?re asked about your ex, just tell your date that you?d prefer not discussing it on a first date and change the subject.

10. Attend offline events to meet the online crush. Online daters are going back to the basics and going offline to group dating events. You?ll know that everyone there is looking for a relationship, so approaching someone should be easier. Online dating sites such as Match.com and MeetMoi have fun events. Visit meetup.com and find events for like-minded singles and go out into the real world.

At the end of the digital day, millions of singles are flocking to Internet dating sites. You may be looking for the needle in the haystack, but you?ve got a big digital playground to play in.

Wishing you much love and joy in cyberspace, or wherever you may roam.

Julie Spira is an online dating expert and relationship coach. She’s the author of the bestseller, The Perils of Cyber-Dating: Confessions of a Hopeful Romantic Looking or Love Online. Julie creates irresistible profiles for singles on the dating scene. For more dating advice, sign up for the Weekly Flirt newsletter, follow @JulieSpira on Twitter, and like her at Facebook.com/CyberDatingExpert.

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