People are incredibly busy today. From relative obscurity just a few short years ago, there are countless websites today that are advertised on TV, radio, in print and billboard ads and on the Internet. This does make it a lot easier to meet new people. There are some inherent dangers in online dating that all women need to be aware of, especially if they intend to make use of this new way of dating. What are some of the dangers? Are women taking more risks by engaging in online dating? Who Is He, Really?
The relative ease of creating a fictitious persona is at the heart of one of the main dangers of online dating. You never really know who it is that is behind the screen name. Hiding behind a made-up moniker could be a rapist, a child molester, a wife-beater, a criminal, or an otherwise unsavory character. Think this is an exaggeration? The person you think is a straight-forward, honest individual who is sincerely interested in you may, in fact, be a cheating spouse.
And it happens all too often that women, young and old, are taken in by someone pretending to be something entirely different than they really are. You need to be extremely cautious about who you interact with online at these dating sites.
If a phone number is requested and you would like to be able to talk with this person live, and you feel comfortable doing so, ask for his phone number instead. Never give your phone number out. Be Mum About Personal Details Another area where women eager to meet someone new get into trouble is giving out too many personal details too soon in the online dating arena.
You could say you work in the communications field without revealing that you work for a specific telecom company, for example. The more information you give out, even in little bits here and there, can be used against you. But this is another area where you could get burned and it could be risky for you. Remember that when you send out photos over the Internet, the other party can do anything they want with it. You have an identity that you need to protect. When in doubt, leave the photos out.
You have an image on the online dating site. Red Flags to Be Concerned About We all know that red flags indicate a warning, something to be extremely cautious about. Just to keep you informed, here are some obvious red flags that you absolutely must pay attention to. If any one of them occurs, this is not a relationship that you should continue.
This is a big no-no that should send shivers up your spine. Even then, keep the details of your finances close to the vest. In a similar vein, if he brags how wealthy he is, that is a sure sign of just the opposite. Evasiveness, changing details — Over a period of time, correspondence between you and this online dating partner will reveal many things. Read them over after the fact.
Notice if the details change, are inconsistent, or point to a tendency to exaggerate. Do answers to questions you ask seem evasive? A pattern of lies and inconsistencies as well as evasiveness is a strong warning sign. Wanting to engage in phone sex or cyber-sex — Really watch out for this one. Any person you meet in an online dating site that encourages you to have phone sex with him right away is someone you want to run away from.
Ditto if he wants you to buy and use a web-cam, usually a dead-on sign that someone wants you to take your clothes off on camera. This is likely a person who is only contacting you for the purpose of phone sex or cyber sex, not someone who wants to have a meaningful, lasting relationship with you. Whatever he calls it, the whole thing should raise a red flag for you. If he says he is too busy working or has such a tight schedule, there may be another reason.
It could be that he is married, is just stringing you along, or is with another person and not really that interested in you. Experts recommend steering clear of relationships that recently ended. The simple fact is that if he just ended a relationship with another woman, he may very well get back together with her and you will be left high and dry.
Another red flag is how he describes the break-up, if he provides details. Steer clear of anyone who has very negative things to say about the ex.
This shows poor character and someone who may hold you in very low esteem somewhere down the line. Contacting you from overseas — Never, ever get involved communicating with someone who reaches out to you from overseas. Outside of the geographic impossibilities, there are numerous scam artists who frequent online dating sites and prey on women. Anyone from overseas should be strictly off-limits. Just because you feel comfortable at this point is no time to let your guard down.
Here are some precautions that you should take when an online date becomes a real date. By now, you should have enough information about him to be able to find out more in a background check. Remember that there is still a risk that this individual could turn out to be someone other than he has portrayed himself to be.
For your first date, especially, arrange to meet in a public place. Let your friends know where you are going to be and the time you expect to meet the individual as well as when you expect to return home. Meeting at a mall and having to meet your friend or friends at a pre-arranged time will give you an out that is both natural and non-threatening.
Drive yourself to your date. This prevents the other person from knowing where you live and gives you a little more control over the situation. A good way to protect yourself is to learn self-defense techniques. There have been instances of women who have been assaulted when online dates turn into real dates.
By learning how to take care of yourself in the event of an assault, you will feel more secure. For many women, this means having a male partner or companion to spend more than just casual time with. There is likely something wrong and you should steer clear of this individual.
Despite glowing advertisements from supposedly happy couples, not everything that goes on in the online dating arena is all roses and sunshine. Just be very cautious. In the end, if you take your time and use some of the precautions laid out here, you should be able to navigate this new way of meeting prospective partners safely and securely. Online dating, while it is becoming increasingly popular, may not be worth you taking more risks than you should.