Archive for the ‘Date Night’ Category

Are You a Cat or a Dog Person?

by Tamar Caspi under Date Night,JDate,Online Dating,Relationships,Single Life

You may think the question about “Pets” in the Lifestyle section is a throwaway, but — in fact — it’s important. Some people are hardcore pet people, while others are not. And within that category you have people who love or prefer one kind of animal but not another, or are allergic to some but not others.

I’m a dog person, but I don’t like their saliva on me or having their hair all over my clothes. I’m not a cat person, but as long as they leave me alone, we’re cool. That said, dogs love attention and cats love those who ignore them, so I often find myself with an animal by my feet whenever I visit friend’s with pets.

I was really turned off by a date’s three cats and the litter box in his bedroom, but I appreciated that he cared for them and took care of them. I found another boyfriend’s relationship with his playful dog to be a redeeming quality, until that boyfriend allowed the dog to sleep in the bed with us.

It’s important to know before getting into a relationship with someone if you have an aversion or allergy to an animal, but it’s not worthy of addressing in your profile or worrying about it until you’re on a date and he or she mentions it. The Lifestyle question doesn’t ask if you own those pets or simply like those pets, or possibly had one as a child or hope to have one later in life.

Don’t make assumptions. If someone is obsessed with their pet then it will be apparent either in their profile or on the first date and you will be able to politely discuss it then. Keyword is “politely” — don’t disrespect their chihuahua that they carry around in their purse (as obnoxious as that sounds) or insult their cat whose vet bills are higher than your own medical bills (as obnoxious as that sounds).


Brotherly Love

by Tamar Caspi under Date Night,JDate,Judaism,Online Dating,Single Life

This Passover my Facebook newsfeed was inundated with beautiful family photos… and many times I was confused. Many of these “friends” I hadn’t seen in awhile, and many of their siblings I hadn’t seen in even longer. In fact, I didn’t know if the person they were lovingly posing with was their sibling at all, or if it was their significant other. And sometimes there wasn’t a tag or it wasn’t clear who the tag belonged to.

Obviously there is nothing wrong with showing affection with your siblings, but if you’re single, then you should not only tag photos but caption them as well: “love hanging out with my brother/sister!” The same goes for any of those photos that you use on JDate as well — make sure you add the description of who is in photos with you. You don’t want any prospects to be confused and think you’re dating someone seriously enough to post a photo on social media, or to think you’re using photos with an ex on JDate — because without a doubt your matches will then compare themselves to your ex!


Middle-Aged/Older Man Trying to Find Love Connections

by Tamar Caspi under Date Night,JDate,Online Dating,Single Life

Hi Tamar,

Is there anyway to be tactful when specifying the type of woman that you’re looking for? How do I tell if they’re looking for love or just a casual dinner because they don’t want to stay home and cook for themselves that night?

A lot of us middle-aged (55+) single men aren’t interested in angry, divorced women who are still looking for Prince Charming to rescue them and then get angry that we prefer to date younger women who are more lovingly appreciative without all the “heavy baggage.”

Please help!

-Frustrated Older Man Looking

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Dear Frustrated Older Man Looking,

Sounds like you needed to vent and I’m glad you got that out. Dating can be difficult at times and it’s healthy to express that frustration to your friends (or me) rather than let it fester as you review profiles and allow the negativity to seep into your dates.

That said, it is somewhat hypocritical of you to call the women your age “angry” because you sound angry yourself. As for the women your age having baggage… well, it’s pretty likely that you have baggage too. Or, as I like to call it, “a story.” There’s no way you get to middle-age status without one! So try to change your mindset about that because you’re not going to attract any women, regardless of your age, if you’re resentful.

To answer your first question, you can make it clear in the areas that ask what you’re looking for that you want someone who is interested in a relationship and not just casual dating. You can usually tell what women are looking for by reading their profiles thoroughly and asking serious questions when you begin a conversation.

 

 


Email Etiquette — Giving a Compliment

by Tamar Caspi under Date Night,JDate,Online Dating,Single Life

Hi Tamar,

Is it okay to tell women that you think they are pretty or attractive? It seems women don’t care about compliments any longer. If a guy is honest and would like to compliment a woman, she doesn’t even say thank you, instead it’s ignored. Am I too old school?

-Compliment Quandary

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Hi Compliment Quandary,

Yes, you should give a compliment if you feel like it. Sharing something positive about someone is never a bad thing… and if that makes you old school then that’s a good thing! Make a mental note if the woman didn’t show gratitude, but don’t necessarily count her out.

It’s tough to have continuity in an email conversation when you are stopping to say thank you for a specific compliment, answering the question you should be including, and then trying to add to the conversation. Sometimes people show gratitude for compliments by returning one of their own, so look out for that because it’s more than acceptable.

Some people don’t know how to accept compliments and that doesn’t make them a bad person, but eventually you may need to say, “You’re beautiful; please believe me, accept the compliment and say thank you or I’m going to have to keep telling you you’re beautiful.”


JDating on the Road

by Caryn Alper under Date Night,JDate,Single Life

Have you ever JDated while visiting another city? In the spirit of spring break travels, I thought I’d write about expanding your dating horizons beyond your area code.  Oh, and I’m not talking about traveling specifically to meet someone you met online – that’s a post for another day.  And I don’t mean finding an overnight companion while on an 18-hour business trip – I can’t endorse that! I’m talking about looking online for people to meet while you happen to be in another city.

I’ve tried it, and you should, too!  A couple of years ago, I went to Washington, D.C. for a few days to visit a friend.  I flew in on a Thursday night and had the next day to myself while my friend was at work. Because I knew I would have a little time to explore the city, I chatted with some guys on JDate, and one took my bait.  After a morning of playing tourist on the National Mall, I arranged to meet him for lunch at a place he recommended.  As it turned out, he was a great guy and a total gentleman, and I had a nice time! Although it didn’t really progress, we had a lovely afternoon, he and I kept in touch for a bit, and I got more dating experience in a low-pressure environment, which never hurts.

I don’t live in D.C. and don’t plan to move there in the foreseeable future, so what’s the point of JDating out of town? Well, you never know what might happen. People are pretty mobile nowadays, and if you’re serious about meeting someone, why not? Maybe he has family in your city and visits often. Or maybe she is considering a new job in your city. Or he regularly travels to your state for work. You never know what might result.

Contacting and meeting someone in another city might seem weird or uncomfortable, so here are some tips for success:

  • DO be open! Whether you alter your profile location to match your destination city for a little while, or you receive a message from a traveler suggesting you give him a tour around town, consider all possibilities.
  • But DON’T have expectations. Just like any date, it could be disappointing. Oh well – move on and explore a new place!
  • DO be safe and smart. Avoid meeting anyone who seems suspicious or sketchy, as always.
  • DON’T seek out a date if you have a layover someplace overnight between 10pm and 6am. Unless you want to – whatever, I’m a blogger, not your mother. But still, I don’t recommend it!
  • DO meet in a public place. General safety rules, duh. But this is especially relevant if you are in an unfamiliar place.
  • DON’T bring an assortment of friends and relatives unless you have already discussed and agreed to it. Or, unless you’re famous and need a bodyguard or entourage.
  • DO be positive and pleasant.  Meeting new people is fun – enjoy!

So go book your tickets to visit family, or volunteer to meet a business client in a new city. A JDate Success Story could be awaiting you! Bon voyage.


Age Range Rage

by Tamar Caspi under Date Night,JDate,Online Dating,Single Life

JDaters are not shy about sharing their opinions — and the strongest and most popular one I get is about age. Check out a few of the emails I’ve received:

“I, at age 57, have had mostly older people (by 10 years) reach out to me. Even when I expressed that was too old because it was a different generation, a man lied and said he was 67. When I met him, he admitted to being 77. Don’t people ( I know women lie too) realize that once a lie is admitted you can’t start a relationship  with trust?”

“Tamar have you checked out the wishes of many men who qualify as one foot in the grave and one foot in a nursing home? Somehow I think these men have not looked in a mirror for at least forty years. When I see a 76-year-old gentleman looking for a woman 20-40, it gets me very nervous. The problem is these men have an overinflated idea of their looks and an underinflated idea of their age.”

I will advise this until I’m blue in the face: don’t lie about your age if you are serious about meeting someone because they will find out your real age eventually — so why fib about it to begin with? Just like the first JDater above wrote, starting off with a lie is not a great way to build a successful relationship. That said, your preferred age range is just as important.

A ten-year gap is a general rule of thumb, but of course there are exceptions to that. If you are looking for someone more than twenty years older or younger than you, then I strongly encourage you to rethink what it is you are truly looking for in a partner and in a relationship.  


Save the Drama for Your Mama

by Tamar Caspi under Date Night,Relationships,Single Life

When you are newly dating someone it is NOT the time to discuss the drama in your life, nor is it the time to whine and complain about things in your life. I’m not saying to make everything sound wonderful and perfect, but don’t turn a date negative with your stories about how your friends are fighting, or your siblings aren’t speaking to each other, or your job sucks, or… or… or…

There’s the normal vent about your computer crashing before you had a chance to back it up one last time, but spend about a minute on things like that and move on. That type of vent is something everyone can relate to and empathize with — and may even have advice to help you. If the dating turns into a serious relationship then you will have plenty of time to be the sounding board for drama!


Backing Up Your First Date Claims

by Tamar Caspi under Date Night,Relationships,Single Life

You know how it is… you’re on a first date and you are telling the person sitting across from you all the positive things going on in your life that will impress them, possibly even embellishing things. You make your job sound exciting with a promotion just around the corner, or you portray your family as tight-knit and easy-going, or mention all your best friends and your packed social life.

And your date is impressed by the idea that you have it together and so you get a second date, and a third, and then eventually you are meshing your date and your reality… which is a job you hate and a promotion you’ve been waiting for a year already, or a family that is just as drama-filled as every other family out there, and a few great friends but with most nights spent at home alone (which is perfectly fine).

None of these things are abnormal, but when you’ve presented yourself as something other than what you are, then you’re going to have a lot of ‘splaining to do, Lucy! All kidding aside, you are going to have to find a way to bridge the gap between what you portrayed your life as… and what the reality is.

Instead, mix the two together from the start. Everyone embellishes, just do so in a way that you won’t bite you in the tuchus later. For example: “I don’t love where I am with my career right now, but I’m excited that a promotion is coming soon” and “I love my family and we are always there for each other at a moment’s notice, but sometimes they make me want to beat my head against a wall!” and “I’ve learned that friendships are quantity or quality, and I truly adore my friends and their loyalty… and the trouble we get into together!”


Pretty vs. Nice or Pretty and Nice

by Tamar Caspi under Date Night,JDate,Online Dating

Illinois Lady claiming to not be photogenic got me thinking about judging a book by its cover. Should her prospects not contact her because she only has one photo that is nice, but not stunning? Or should they contact her because her profile is pretty great? Does one element outweigh the other? Do you need both? Do you chance that the person who has a great profile could possibly be like “Illinois Lady”  — i.e. not photogenic, but someone who impresses you once you actually meet in person? And then perhaps once you meet, you will be so impressed that you are even more into them because your attraction is based on more than purely physical or sexual factors? What do you guys think?


Date in Reality, Not in Your Mind

by Caryn Alper under Date Night,JDate,Online Dating,Relationships,Single Life

I’ve been thinking about last week’s post, and today I’d like to piggyback on that same concept – specifically on the detriments of texting. Texting and emailing a new person (whom we haven’t met in person yet) is like inflating an imaginary balloon (stay with me here). But, instead of blowing in oxygen or helium, we tend to inflate it with all of our hopes, dreams, and visions of the future.

Here’s an illustration of what I mean: Let’s say you’ve been exchanging a few witty emails with a cute guy online and he asks for your number. Your conversation moves to text, and the banter continues. You’re feeling good about him, and you get excited and smile when you hear the beep of a new message. You know a lot about him – he’s cute in his picture, he has a good job, he uses grammar correctly and emoticons appropriately. You might even be able to tell that he’s smart, kind, and funny – after all, you two say that you like the same things, and his texts always make you laugh.  You start to wonder what your first date might be like – you’re sure he would pick you up and be such a gentleman while whisking you off to this really cool little Italian place you’ve never seen before. And you just know your family would love him. You both have younger brothers, and they would totally be friends, and oh, I wonder how many kids he wants? He would be the best dad… Congratulations! You’ve found yourself a nice, Jewish… pen pal. That’s it. You actually don’t know anything substantial about this guy with whom you are planning a life. So what happens when the day finally arrives when dream boy asks you out on a date (or wants to meet up, or whatever)? You’re ecstatic and can’t wait to have the last first date ever!  However…

The Italian restaurant in your dreams becomes a skate park in reality, his gentlemanly ways become surprisingly bro-ish, and he’s kind of impatient with other people, which you hate.  He plays with his phone while you’re talking and pops gum like a teenager. And poof – that balloon I was talking about just popped, sprinkling all your hopes over some dirty skateboard. He was supposed to be your prince in shining armor! What happened?

Unfortunately, this guy did nothing wrong (other than wait too long to take you out)!  The problem, I’m sorry to say – is you – or more specifically, your expectations.  Imagination is a good thing, but when you start to imagine certain scenarios, it’s really easy to get carried away and expect them to occur, especially when you get positive feedback from the object of your desires.  If you’re really hopeful that a relationship will bloom with someone, you’re more likely to make positive attributions to otherwise neutral occurrences.  So your mind turns “I like kids” into “I want to have kids with you!”

So what does all this have to do with texting? Well, the longer you text back and forth, the more opportunity your mind has to project good things onto a person you don’t really know.  Moral of the story: stop texting and meet already!  That, or totally manage your expectations. But, I think it’s easier and more fun to just go on a date and form a realistic opinion of someone without the use of emoticons.