We left Swati in Are you ready to date? at 11:30 at night about to swoop into action in online dating. You already know she was married this past New Year’s Eve, so exactly how did she find her new partner? Here’s Swati:
Match looked like I had to do too much writing myself, and I was getting tired, so I picked eHarmony. I have to say the surveys were much longer than I thought they would be but I thought they were really good because it spits back profiles to you of you and then of the kind of person you’re looking for. I joined for 30 days, and while I was filling out the surveys I thought,
“This is crazy. I’m doing online dating. I don’t understand how it works, how can I meet someone online?”
Then I promised myself I would be active, I wouldn’t join and then do nothing, I would reach out to at least three men because I usually wait for people to come to me. My now husband was one of the three people I reached out to and we started communicating. He’s the only one I went out with from eHarmony. That was about two and a half years ago.
I knew I wanted a serious relationship, but I also knew from my marriage that I didn’t want the wrong person. I’d rather be alone than be with the wrong person. We both say from the very first time we met, everything has been really easy, even when we disagree or just hanging out, everything’s been easy. We started dating in August and by that February, I actually have something written in my diary saying,
“I think this is the man for me.”
I just kind of knew it. I felt it but didn’t always trust it, because I really felt like “I can’t trust myself.”
This is the first time I had ever dated somebody else who had kids, and I would say it was a ton easier not to have to explain “I’m sorry, I can’t go out because she’s sick” or all that little stuff. I hadn’t let myself get vulnerable with the people I’d dated before because either I was in control or I was just looking for fun, they were fulfilling one little need. Once I could tell “I’m really falling for him, I’m falling in love with him and he’s getting inside of my heart” that was really hard because I would start to get anxious like “oh my God, what are you doing? You’re giving up control.”
I would talk to him about it, which is a strategy I had never really tried before. He’s divorced too, with kids, so both of us would just say “some of this is normal because of what each of us have gone through” or say we had some interaction and I’d think “oh my God, I don’t know why I was so upset about that,” I would just go back to him and say “I can’t figure it out, but I think I’m feeling anxious about this because I feel like I’m giving up control, but it’s not like you’re taking something away from me or you’re taking control of something.” I would just talk to him about it.
My ex-husband would never talk about feelings or what was going on, we didn’t have that, so this was very nice, and then I started easing up. Relaxing. It took a while because then when he would travel, it would make me really anxious and nervous because it was in my head that he wasn’t here to talk to me, so I tortured him with phone conversations.
The Divorce Coach Says
I haven’t dated yet and I feel there’s some good advice here in Swati’s story for me:
- online dating can work, so get over it. You actually get to know far more about someone even before the first date than you would meeting someone through friends or work.
- choose a service and commit to it. That means being prepared to take the initiative, not just responding to people who contact you.
- invest in filling out the profile information – the more honest you are about what you’re looking for, the more likely you are to be compatible with the suggested matches.
Interestingly, while writing this post my fifteen-year-old son peered over my shoulder and saw eHarmony up on the monitor. The conversation went something like this:
“Mom, why are you looking at eHarmony?”
“Because the lady in the story I’m writing about met her husband on there.”
“Why? Can’t I have a boyfriend?”
“No, that would be too weird. Wait until I’ve gone to college, please.”
Then it was time to run him to Boy Scouts. I’m a little surprised by his reaction but I probably shouldn’t be since we’ve never talked about my dating so maybe it’s time to have that conversation…. Any suggestions?
Photo Credit: GuideEbook