Can we really change a person?

by jpompey under Online Dating

Most times when we meet someone online, we will find ourselves thinking something along the lines of, “Well, I really like the person, I just wish they were…”  Fill in the blank.

If only this person had one or two qualities that were different they would be the ideal person, and we could live happily ever after.

Which begs the question, can you ever really change  a person?  Can a bad boy be turned straight?  Can a cheater be turned faithful?  Can a serial dater find monagomy?

Opinions may differ greatly on this subject.  Many will argue that our true personalities are molded when we are still young children.  Others will swear to the changes they have seen in their significant others.

Is this just wishful thinking, or can we truly change?  If so, dating women online sure would be a lot easier, so tell me your secret!

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Priorities, Ideals and Traits, Oh My!

by Tamar Caspi under Relationships

What are you looking for when you’re perusing JDate? Looks? Age? Education?  Success? And how strict are you about those ideals? I’ll tell you that the more flexible you are about what’s important to you the faster and easier you’ll be impressed.

My friend Julie cares about where a guy went to college and how many years he graduated in and what he majored in. If I were a guy I wouldn’t meet Julie’s standards because it took me five years to graduate from UCLA and I majored in Women’s Studies. She admitted that she wouldn’t even have dated Steven Spielberg because he never did graduate from Long Beach State (okay, okay, he eventually received an honorary degree). At a certain point all these silly ideals need to disappear. I guess Julie isn’t desperate enough to meet someone yet because when you are truly ready to meet your Beshert you’ll put your superficial wants aside and focus on the truly important stuff. Intelligence is important, but level of education maybe shouldn’t be.

Am I attracted to my husband and do I think he’s dashingly handsome? Sure. But that alone wasn’t going to get us this far. He had to have other, more important traits to get us to where we are today. He respects me, loves his parents, is nice to strangers on the street, is smart, is hysterically funny and we have a lot in common. In addition, we have a lot that we don’t have in common which makes life a lot more interesting. We enjoy watching American Idol together but I’ve had to learn to love the Dallas Mavericks. And to top it all off we have great conversations. Looks fade but you’re going to have to talk to your spouse for the rest of your life!

So make your list – goodness knows I had mine! – but be able to adjust and appreciate what’s right in front of you.

Age is Just a Number

by Tamar Caspi under JDate,Online Dating,Relationships

Upon signing up for an account on JDate you’re asked to choose an age range for your matches. Choosing your age range doesn’t sound like it should be a complicated matter, but alas age isn’t just a number. By choosing a narrow age range you’re systematically eliminating thousands of prospects simply because of age.

Like is attracted to like.  So, someone just out of college is often drawn to someone who is in the same phase in their life, while someone in their late 20’s who is working really hard to get to the top of their field is attracted to other people in a similar stage. The same goes for people in their early 30’s who are beginning to think about starting a family, they’re looking for someone who’s on the same page. That’s why many people end up dating and marrying people around the same age. But selecting a narrow age gap on JDate is not in your favor. If you’re a 28-year-old female and select a maximum age of 32, imagine how many 33-year-olds you’re excluding. Now imagine how many 34-year-olds you’re excluding. And it’s only an age gap of a few years!

When you meet someone at a bar you can only attempt to measure his or her age based on their looks, and possibly their career and maturity, but you were attracted to that person and started getting to know him or her before asking their age. So when it turns out that he or she is a few years younger than your minimum or a couple years older than your maximum, are you going to turn your back? Probably not, so attach that philosophy to your JDate account and broaden your options.

Interestingly, as we get older our preferred age range tends to change. First, it broadens and then it becomes narrower. When you’re approaching your 30’s you tend to only add a few years on each end because for some inexplicable reason age matters.  However, in your mid-30’s the age range widens a bit as other, more important traits take precedence. And as 40 looms in the not too distant future you’re more than willing to add 10 years on each end because you become pickier about other qualities. I actually think the last approach is best – make the age range as broad as possible and use other, more important, traits to narrow down your search.