The Toxic World of Dating Sites


It’s the hottest thing now, have you heard? The wonderful world of finding your soulmate on a dating site. Everyone knows someone, that knows someone, that knows someone that met their spouse on a dating site. If you haven’t guessed it, I’m joking. Well, I said that in jest, which means that there’s some truth to it. If you’re single, whether you’re consumed with work and don’t have time to go out or you’re just hoping to keep your options open, the dating site world is a wondrous place that’s full of many, many options (maybe too many). There are so many options on dating sites, that it could have a very bad effect on a lot of people by not letting them concentrate on one person at a time. I think being on dating sites makes people not want to get off of them as well because they want to keep their options open for the possibility of finding someone better. I also hear it can be quite addictive and hard for some people to ever get off of them. If used wisely, it could be a way of meeting someone special. Hey, it could happen.

The problem with staying on dating sites after you meet someone with potential is that you’re never truly giving that person with potential a “real” chance. To have a real chance at falling in love, my suggestion would be (if you so choose the dating site option) that when you meet someone and there’s potential, after a few dates, deactivate your dating site profiles and give it an actual chance of survival. How else will you be able to concentrate on that special someone. After all, you can always reactivate your profiles if it doesn’t work out. It doesn’t hurt to try! I don’t know about you, but it’s hard to concentrate on more than one person at a time. Many people don’t mind the whole multi-dating experience (dating more than one person at a time), but I can’t imagine after a few dates with the same person, how healthy or fair that is.

I’ve heard so many things in regards to the positives and negatives of dating sites. There’s quite a bit of dishonesty on dating sites, so you have to be cautious. Some people are even married! Yes, some people are still married. Many people are separated (which still defines them as legally wed). Some people are recently out of a relationship and entirely “emotionally unavailable” and simply wanting to hook up and get a “rebound.” Some people like to go “fishing.” Someone once told me about the “fishing” that goes on for many people in the dating site world. “Fishing” is when a guy (for example) tries to contact as many women as possible to see which ones bite and then he tries to hook up with as many as he can. How scary is that to hear, being a girl!

Many people post pictures that are entirely photoshopped, that isn’t recent or look nothing like them. People lie quite often about their age because they’re afraid someone will judge them upon it or not be able to see their profiles because they search within a five-year difference of their actual age. A lie is a lie my friend, and that’s not how you want to start out a brand new relationship. A good thing about dating sites is that you can narrow down your search for what type of person you’re looking for (to some extent of course).

If you create a profile on any dating sites, it should be brutally honest, you should share what you’re comfortable sharing, and post recent pictures. There’s really no reason to lie about your age (whether you’re a girl or a guy) because you want someone to love you for you, and not judge you based on your age. I’m not sure if this is a Los Angeles problem or just a general dating site problem, but everyone in LA is beautiful. Yes, this can be a problem, because many people have become quite superficial and expect something that’s unrealistic or usually only found in Victoria Secret magazines or GQ. Of course, in Los Angeles, there’s a reputation for surgeries, Botox, and whatnot. But more than that, there’s a way of life in Los Angeles where people are very active, care about their appearance, and their health. People in Los Angeles are very big on being active and working out. I love living in Los Angeles and I feel it’s such a beautiful mentality to want to take good care of yourself. When you’re healthy inside and outside, you’ve got a full package.

The dating site world is no different than the Los Angeles world in my opinion. There’s always someone more beautiful than someone else on dating sites. Of course, a picture can only take you so far, if you’re looking for true love. The fire and chemistry must be there but it takes much more than that to last for a lifetime. I’ve personally met some people in my life that were not attractive at all or very little, to say the least. But they became the most beautiful people I’ve ever known. I’ve experienced the opposite as well. I’ve met people that were so beautiful on the outside, but nothing to show for it on the inside or quite bad on the inside, to the point where they no longer looked beautiful to me, on the outside.There’s always someone more beautiful than someone else. This is part of life. There will always be someone more beautiful than you… on the outside. That is why you must look beneath the surface and go for substance. Don’t get me wrong! The attraction must be there! I always say that one should look for the cake, not the frosting. The foundation must be there.

I joke about the dating site world and refer to it as, “The toxic world of dating sites.” Again, there’s good and bad in dating sites. Many people go on dating sites because they’re not into the bar scene or the club scene. I can understand why. Those scenes aren’t the best place to meet a future possible spouse. Another problem with dating sites is that people tend to feel or become easily replaceable, and I think sometimes people forget that there’s a soul in each person. From what I hear, girls get swamped with emails to the point that they can barely respond to one-tenth of them (if that), and men get so few emails. I’m only speculating of course. If true, that actually makes a lot of sense to me, because men are generally the aggressors and pursuers. At least, that’s my old fashioned mentality; that man should take the lead and from what I’ve seen, they usually do (even these days).

Of course, many women are comfortable sending out the first email to a guy on dating sites. I heard a rumor that some guys don’t respond to a woman who initiates the conversation. My goodness, my goodness! Nothing’s worse than playing games. When I heard that, all I thought was, “wow, what ego!” This is not always the case, I’m sure. I’ve also heard that some men get completely flattered when a woman takes that first step and initiates a conversation. Some men realize how hard it can be to keep approaching or contacting women and being shut down cold, so it’s refreshing to them.

I fear that a problem could arise in which many men could become insecure and feel that a woman doesn’t like him because she doesn’t respond. But what men that go on dating sites should realize is that women are getting a tremendous amount of emails, simply because they’re women. The fact that these women are getting so many more emails than the men, I fear that some men could take it personally and feel like, “what’s wrong with me that she won’t respond?” I’m not sure some men realize, that it’s not a personal thing when a woman they’re contacting doesn’t respond. I can imagine for a woman to respond to each and every email to be nearly impossible, even if she wanted to be nice. I would think that it could end up being very hard on a male ego.

A man wants to feel like a man, and he wants to feel handsome, powerful, and as if he’s the best catch on the site. How can a man possibly feel that way, when a woman won’t even respond with a, “no, thank you.” The truth is, I don’t think a woman should respond (or a man) if they’re not interested. I don’t think that people should respond at all when they know that there’s no chance because it could lead the other person on. That’s just unnecessary pain and heartache waiting to happen. I don’t think people should even respond with a, “thank you” if given a compliment on a dating site. I find it to be very misleading.

Sometimes people have a fear of people stealing their information and abusing the system. I suppose it could be a risk, like almost anything else. What we’re all willing to do to find love! Seriously though, some people are afraid to even post pictures of themselves. How in the world would someone expect any type of response from another person, when they’re showing their information and pictures but you are concealing yours! I don’t think that’s a good or fair approach for anyone. Why would someone that has no idea what you look like, want to converse with you! You clearly see their profile so you were interested enough to contact them, but it’s simply not fair unless they get to see what you look like as well. There has to be some type of physical chemistry. I’m not saying that looks are everything. That’s far from what I personally believe. I’m simply saying that fair is fair, and if you want a response from the other person, post at least one picture, for the love of G-d.

Remember, woman, get swamped with emails in comparison to men, so you have to post a picture and stand out. Be confident and love yourself. If a woman or a man is going to judge you solely based on your appearance and they’re expecting a flawless beauty, then let them click on the next profile so you can be with someone more genuine, that has a better perspective for what really matters in life. If you’re that famous that you can’t show your face, I’m lost for words, but if you’re afraid of people you work with seeing you on dating sites, so you feel you can’t post even one picture, it’s better not to go on them if you’re that afraid.

Now that I’ve gone over how imperative it is to post a picture on your dating profile, I can’t stress enough the importance of writing enough quality content. Your content should state what you’re looking for. If you have no idea what you want in a person, then you’re not ready to be out in the dating scene, and especially not in this world of dating sites. Everyone should know what they want in another person. I’m speaking about a general idea, not physical appearance. Like I said, physical matters, but it can only get you so far.

Have an idea of what you’re looking for and post it. Also, post about who you are and a few interests you have. Write in your profile what your intentions are and if you have kids, be honest and proud of that, because kids are a beautiful thing. If someone doesn’t want to date someone who has kids, you won’t want them to contact you and get your hopes up. It’s better to wean out the people who don’t want to date someone with kids. The same thing goes for people that have pets. Some people aren’t “pet people” and prefer to date people that don’t have pets. All in all, be honest and write enough that it appears you put some effort into your profile. It shows that you actually are looking for the “real deal” (true love) and not just a flavour of the week kind of romance. Effort can be seen through a short, but nicely written profile, and I must say, it will go a long way.

I think most people that go on dating sites and meet someone they like, end up wondering how to tell their friends and family how they actually met. Many people don’t care and tell the truth about where they met, but many people get shy and embarrassed that they had to meet someone on a “dating site“. However, I think it’s much more common these days to meet someone on a dating site. In my humble opinion, be confident and who really cares where you found your love. At least, you found someone special. You’re one of the lucky ones that someone will one day know someone, that knows someone, that knows you, and you got married from the dating site. I’m not personally a fan of the dating site world, but if you are trying every other option to meet someone and to no avail, go for it! I hope you find what you’re looking for.

Anne Cohen
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6 thoughts on “The Toxic World of Dating Sites

  1. Great post, I agree with so much of what you say. I use dating sites as I find it easier to get talking to people that way and have seen the good and bad in them. I totally agree about giving things a chance with people rather than keeping dating around. Ultimately a lot of it comes down to treating people with honesty and acting with integrity, sadly not everybody feels the same so you’ve got to learn to see through people’s words and judge things on their actions, seeing things as they are rather than how you’d like them to be and following your instincts.

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