under Online Dating
JDate has a lot of multiple choice, fill in the blank, and essay questions asking you what you want, but what about what you DON’T want? I’m sure we can all make a list a mile long of things we would prefer a partner not to have, but try to whittle that list down to just a couple of things.
These are not your preferences, but rather the “I know for a fact that I can’t live with someone who…” (smokes, is not pro-choice, owns a gun, doesn’t read books, dresses up to reenact the Civil War, doesn’t want kids, whatever it is). It’s okay to be upfront and straightforward about specific traits that you have an aversion to. That said, you need to be open in other areas if you’re going to state one or two things that is an absolute dealbreaker.
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under Date Night
I see you are in your thirties, I mention this because — as a woman — you are at a different point in your life than the ladies I am interested in, whose age range is from 50-61. So, I think your perspective will be somewhat different from what I am looking for. In any case, I get the feeling from most of the women I have met that they all claim to know what it is they seek. However, there is a considerable amount of uncertainty that comes along with it, irrespective of what they are saying.
Dear Uncertain Certainty,
Irrespective of my age, I do think I can shed some light on what you’re experiencing. As anyone gets older, they become more set in their ways and more opinionated about what they do and don’t like. That’s normal. And as they experience life — whether that means many years of dating, or a divorce, or being widowed — people tend to think they know what they are seeking in a partner. Yet, there’s always an insecurity that you may be wrong or could be proven wrong. A woman may believe she could never date or marry a guy who owns a cat, but she doesn’t want to eliminate the possibility that a guy is perfect for her, even with said cat (substitute “cat” for just about anything). So, although the women you date may claim they know what they seek, they want to leave the door open for possibilities.
under Online Dating
I love lists. They’re so handy! When it comes to dating, I have 4 lists I refer to, which are grouped under the heading: “What I Want in Another Human Being.” No need to be hetero-normative, right?
These 4 lists include various traits pertaining to human characteristics I like and dislike in other humans. The 4 lists are:
- Deal Breakers
- Price of Admission
If someone is missing a Must, I can’t accept a date with him in good conscience. He’s missing something I consider fundamental.
If someone is missing a number of Wants, I may still accept a date, but he is already high on my red flag watch.
A Deal Breaker is just that. I don’t bother wasting my time when it’s clear someone possesses one or more of these traits.
The least obvious is the Price of Admission category. To discover these, you most likely will have to accept a date or two. They are personality quirks or lifestyle behaviors that you aren’t hugely attracted to, but that you’re willing to put up with on a case-by-case basis. Basically, if someone is awesome but has a random drawback that kind of rubs you the wrong way, you need to decide if it’s a Deal Breaker or a Price of Admission. If you think a movie looks like a winner, you pay the Price of Admission, right? If you think it doesn’t look so great, you may pass or wait until you can stream it for free.
How do you categorize your priorities? Mine are listed in an excel sheet. Go figure. Analytical Haley strikes again!
What is the best, systematic way to create a profile and search successfully on JDate?
Dear Systematic Searcher,
The easy answer? Buy my book, How to Woo a Jew, The Modern Jewish Guide to Dating and Mating.
The more complicated answer? Be honest about your stats (age, education level, height/weight, religious level) first and foremost. Next, choose your preferences in a mate. Start off by selecting your “perfect prospect,” and then broaden the preferences from there.
If you don’t have at least 100 prospects to check out, then your preferences are too narrow, and you need to compromise somewhere regarding what, exactly, you’re looking for. You aren’t going to find someone who encompasses everything, but you can find most things by giving in, bit by bit. Here are a few helpful questions to ask yourself to make sure you aren’t being too strict in any certain area:
- How wide is your age range?
- Just because you have a PhD does it mean your mate has to as well?
- If someone lives within a 25 mile radius, then what’s another 25 miles?