Is Online Dating a Must-Do These Days?

Is Online Dating a Must-Do These Days?

By Rosie Munger for

"When I was doing online dating in 2003 or so, everybody thought I was nuts." Linda stated. "Ten years later, those same friends have met their spouses through OKCupid,, JDate, etc, and it seems that among my friends still in their 20s, it's kind of weird if you *haven't* at least tried online dating."

Times certainly have changed. At the turn of the century there was a stigma associated with online dating, yet these days it seems that single people who don't have an online profile are a rarity. Has it gone from being a dirty secret to something that is a given?

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Perhaps, but that does not mean it's the right dating avenue for everyone. Many people meet their mates, either temporary or lifelong, on online sites these days. Yet, for as many people as find love on the Internet, there are still those who just can't connect with the online process. Anna was "only on OKCupid for two weeks" because she found it far "too time consuming trying to read emails, check out guys' profiles and respond." This is a common reason why people drop off the online dating sites. Anna, now married to someone she met offline, cautioned, "sometimes the profiles give too many details, and people are easily eliminated based on your search criteria." Curious as to whether they'd even discover each other online, she and her then-boyfriend (now husband) discovered that it would have been really difficult for them to even find each other on the site.

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Taylor, on the other hand, is happily with a man she encountered online who she most likely never would have met in "real life" - she was in the Peace Corps and he's a military officer. Yet, they were paired on eHarmony and she's now in a relationship that makes her truly happy. Deena, too, found her match online. A busy career and a new town can make it difficult to meet people, not to mention that once you're out of school your circles seem to get smaller.

Sam questions whether online dating caters to a society focused on instant gratification, and he could be on to something. We can sit at home and "meet" people instead of having to venture into the slow real world in which some special bonds sometimes must develop over time. In the online dating world, if you want to have a drink with someone who sparks your interest in an hour, it can be done.

Related: Is it Love - or Lust - at First Sight?

Still, online dating is here to stay. It should be considered a weapon in everyone's arsenal, available to use if one so chooses. It should not be relied upon as the only way to meet single people, as this can be a lonely and frustrating path. Some people will still shy away from online dating, and that is completely their prerogative. For those who are veterans or want to give it a try, do not make it your only means to meet people. Fill your life with activities you love and your chances of meeting more people, friends or romantic interests, will increase. Hedge your bets by going on and offline!

Related: The Frequency Factor: Communication During Early Dating

Have you tried online dating? Do you think everyone should give it a go at least once? helps people find happiness in the right relationship. If you've been through a breakup, divorce, or just haven't been able to find happiness in your love life, BounceBack is a place to tell your story, get community support and advice from experts, and find the confidence and strength you need to move forward. Check out our Facebook page.

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