How can I open up to others through online dating?
I have to say, I’m really out of touch when it comes to this whole “online dating scene”. You see, being 39 and single (and struggling just to make new friends in this town I’ve lived in for almost 15 yrs) has been downright exhausting! I’ve turned to temples, synagogues, JCCAs and the Jewish Federation for help, and now I feel like the only direction to go is online. Even though I’ve tried this online scene before and failed, I keep coming back to it because everyone says this is where you’ll meet people, this is where you’ll meet your beshuva, to which I reply, “bah humbug” (for a lack of better words!!!).
Nevertheless, seeing as how I went to an all boys Catholic high school and didn’t actually start interacting with women until I got into college, it’s not a wonder it seems so strange that I’m striking out when it comes to the Jewish (or any) dating scene, for that matter! (oh, and did I fail to mention the fact that on top of all that, I have a learning disability which hinders my social abilities somewhat in life).
In any event, I felt like I had to chat with someone (even though I have been working with a professional) who might give me some advice on how to open up with others and not compromise being my true, honest, sincere self with women on sites like JDate. If you have any fleeting words of wisdom, guidance or support which could be of assistance to me, it would be greatly appreciated! It seems so hard being a young Jew, living in a different world than the one your parents lived , when all you want is to have what they have which is peace, serenity, love and bliss for 40+ yrs, together…..
Thanks for listening.
Feeling out of touch in St Louis, MO
Dear St. Louis Single,
Meeting eligible Jewish women outside of the major Jewish metropolises is tough, but do not despair. Online dating is the best thing to happen for folks like you since the discovery of underarm deodorant. You seem to be viewing the prospect of searching for your mate online as a setback. Instead, you should see it as an opportunity to meet women who don’t live in the great city of St. Louis. Sure, you could move to NY or LA where it’s fairly easy to come into contact with lots of Jewish singles, and perhaps you should seriously consider that option. If you can’t move, you need to plug in and start surfing.
The fact that you tried online dating in the past and weren’t successful doesn’t mean it doesn’t work. It does mean that you probably have to get a top notch profile together including photos that make you look the best that you can be. You also need to invest the time to look at profiles and contact potential dates in a serious and meaningful way. That means that before you email them, spend some time crafting a message that will get their attention and pique their interest in a positive way. You can download my free ebook on www.jcoach.com for pointers and instructions about creating a great profile.
I know lots of nice Jewish boys who went to all boys schools, including yours truly, and did just fine in the dating and relationship arena. If you feel that you have particular challenges to overcome, then you should work with someone (as you say you are) to overcome them and to learn the social/dating skills that you need to succeed.
Finally, you must always be yourself. Anything else is dishonest, most of all to yourself, and will only end up hurting you in the long run. Always be yourself, and make sure that self is always the best self that it can be.
You can do it!
To ask Rabbi Singer a question, email firstname.lastname@example.org.