Archive for the ‘Single Life’ 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!


The Four Daters

by Caryn Alper under JDate,Judaism,Online Dating,Single Life

Happy Passover!  I’m willing to bet that many of you attended a seder or two this past weekend. And if yours were anything like mine, the food was delicious and plentiful, there was only one major wine spill, and only one person forgot her reading glasses, which might be a record.  Despite the unspoken battle of wills between those who were engaged in lively discussion and those who looked at their watches every 5 minutes, hoping to eat and run, my family and I had lovely seders, and I hope you did too!

CRTV-1667-300x250

If “The Four Children” were “The Four Daters,” which would you be?

You’ve probably noticed that the number four has significance in the seder: four sons, four cups of wine, four questions (incidentally, our “kids table” was the end of the table with all unmarrieds under 40. I’m in my early thirties and sang the four questions!)  While reading about the four sons, my likes-to-categorize brain wondered: are there four kinds of daters? I’m sure there are more, but in the Passover sprit, here are some of my insights on the top four as they relate to the four sons:

 

 

 

 

 

1. The Wise One

What does he say? In the story of Passover, the wise child wants to know all about the laws and mitzvot that Hashem has commanded you. In dating, the Wise Child wants to know all about you! In other words, a Wise Dater is attentive, selfless, and aware of G-d (meaning that when it comes to dating, what is meant to be will be). I read some commentary on the Wise Son indicating that his wisdom makes him pure (read: good intentions) and allows him to foresee the consequences of his actions, which, in my opinion are really good qualities in a dater.

2. The Wicked One

He asks, “What is this service of yours? Why do you go to the trouble?” According to some commentary, the Wicked Child is basically kind of selfish. He excludes himself from the rest of the group and thinks the rules don’t apply to him, denying his Jewish engagement. A Wicked Dater acts selfishly and rudely.  Obvious signs of this type: texting at the table, making demands of the waiter, or saying things like “MUST BE THIN. SEEKING 21-24 ONLY. NO GAMES OR DRAMA” in his/her profile. The Haggadah says you should blunt the teeth of the Wicked Son, which sounds violent like an old-school punishment, but one interpretation of this phrase is that we should teach the Wicked Son to control his desire for self-indulgence. Luckily, this means the Wicked Son, or Dater, in this case, is correctable, offering hope for even the most selfish daters among us.

3. The Simple One

What does he say? “What is this all about?” The Simple Child doesn’t know what’s going on but expresses an interest in learning. Similarly, there are some daters who are out of practice or maybe new to the playing field, often identified by their empty or generic profiles. But they are here, ready to look for love! Just as we are to help the Simple Son by explaining the story to him, so too can we help new daters by proofreading profiles or coaching them before dates.

4. The One Who Doesn’t Know Enough to Ask

We have to start him off. This is akin to the person who wants a relationship but doesn’t know how to go about finding one. So start him off – tell him to leave the house and get out there! Introduce him to friends and help him set up a JDate profile.

Do you recognize yourself as one of these four daters? In the tradition of Passover, I offer no concrete answers here – just fodder for discussion and debate that may keep you up past midnight. Don’t forget to end with the afikoman!


Extreme Profile Makeover — New on JDate

by Tamar Caspi under JDate,Monday Makeover,Online Dating,Single Life

Dear Tamar,

I’d love some help with my profile. Lots of guys look, but rarely contact me. And, the ones who do contact me are usually far away or obviously didn’t really read the profile. I’ve been out of the dating world for almost 30 years and could sure use the help.

Thanks!

-New on JDate

______________________________________________________________________________________

Dear New on JDate,

I’m so glad you reached out! Divorcees and widows who didn’t have JDate their first time around definitely have some adjusting to do when it comes to dating with technology this time around!

Let’s start:

First off, I don’t like profile names that are a jumble of letters and/or numbers. Rather than the initials you used, try to combine your name with something else that describes you — whether it be your city, job, physical description, or a favorite hobby.

Second, you need more photos. The first one is cute, but should be a supplementary photo rather than your main picture. The second one, a selfie, should be replaced. And while you’re at it, add a full body as well as another pic showing you being social or active. Your main pic should be a more lively and engaging headshot.

As for your paragraphs, I think you did a nice job writing them. I don’t prefer people putting “separated,” but you do explain it well. Since you’re having problems getting the dates you want then try changing it to “divorced” and simply mentioning that you were married 25 years and once you’re on a date you can explain more.

I would also delete the “addendum” part, for a few reasons. One, you put “after two weeks on JDate” and that timeframe will change with every coming week. Second, rather than writing that in your profile you can simply reply to the men that are contacting you from across the country: let them know you’re flattered, but aren’t interested in long distance.

Lastly, I would shift your age range. As a woman in her mid-50’s I think your age range should be 50-65 rather than 45-60.


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

___________________________________________________________________

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

_________________________________________________________________________________________

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.”


Email Etiquette — How Do I Start a Conversation?

by Tamar Caspi under JDate,Online Dating,Single Life

Hi Tamar,

I have no idea how to start a conversation with someone I’m interested in. What should I say that’s not too much… but just enough.

Thank you,

Lost in Conversation

___________________________________________________________________________________________

Hi Lost in Conversation,

Great question! Interestingly, when both people are already intrigued by the other’s profile, it really doesn’t matter how you start the email as long as you take the time to send one. That said, here is an example that you can play around with and personalize:

Hi there,

I was attracted to your profile by your photos, but I was really impressed by what you wrote, especially _____________. We have a lot in common (which you can see by reading my profile) and I’m always excited to meet people who also love ________________. Have you ever ________________?

Looking forward to hearing from you,

Sam


Extreme Profile Makeover — Photo Perplexed

by Tamar Caspi under JDate,Monday Makeover,Online Dating,Single Life

Hi Tamar,

Can you please tell me if my pictures or profile needs a make-over?

-Photo Perplexed ____________________________________________________________________________________

Hi Photo Perplexed,

I really liked what you wrote in your profile and you answered the questions quite nicely. You could go back and fix some typos, but I like what you had to say and found that you described yourself and what you’re looking for quite well. You seem to be true to yourself, and it is endearing.

I wasn’t as impressed by your photos; my initial reaction was that they are not “naturally you.” I do recommend going on photo shoots, but it’s not ideal when it is obvious you are posing for a camera. I advise deleting all the photos except for the 2nd one and the last one while you take or find new ones.

The other thing that I didn’t really like is that you aren’t smiling in any of the photos! The lack of a smile makes it seem like you are not as approachable as your profile makes you out to be. Whether it is a friend or a professional photographer, ask someone to take photos of you in a natural, organic setting (not posing, not in front of a white screen), somewhere that shows you relaxed and enjoying life!


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.


What is Love?

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

What is love? Well, it’s not an easy thing to define, that’s for sure! Feelings never are. Perhaps it’s easier to describe what it’s not. Love is not attraction, and it’s not sex. Love is not wanting what you can’t have or missing someone when they’re away. All those things belong in the camp of lust. Are attraction, sex and missing each other important? Yes. But, it’s not what love is.

Every relationship is different, but each has to have some basic fundamentals. Love comes from building a foundation of trust, friendship, compassion, and being partners in (and sometimes against) life. Without these key elements you may like someone, and you may love being with them or love certain things about them, but you don’t have enough to survive.

It takes time to build this foundation but it is integral to the process. This doesn’t mean to run away from what I described as lust; it just means not to confuse the two, and to give love time to develop. It can take time to solidify, so try to be patient as some people need more time to be certain those elements are deeply rooted. Falling in love feels so good, it gives us a euphoric high, but that feeling can also confuse us from seeing signs that the building blocks are missing or crumbling before our very eyes.

Finding love isn’t easy, but it’s why you are on JDate – to look for it – so don’t give up! It may be frustrating, but it’s better to stay single than to enter a loveless relationship just for the sake of being in one.