Tips crumpled-love

Last updated on November 1, 2013 | by Aet Suvari


Six Tips To Say ‘No Thanks’ When Online Dating

It’s easy enough to give advice about how to get yourself a date, how to make your profile more attractive and noticeable, finding the right things to say, how to be proactive and so on and so forth.

But these aren’t the only kind of ‘how to’ tips when embarking on online dating. There’s also the much less romantic but just as important question of how to let someone down without coming across as a jerk.

We’ve got some tips for you on how to avoid unnecessary pain when breaking the bad news and not getting caught in a relationship you’re not really interested in. Thankfully the rules in the online dating world aren’t as rigid as those of the real world and, when applied correctly, should make you feel a great deal less awkward.

1) Show who you are

Your profile is a lot less likely to attract the ‘wrong’ type of matches if you’re honest on your profile page. Don’t try and sell yourself with descriptions that appeal to everyone but which are essentially nothing more but well-used cliches. Be original and honest, show who you are. Sure – you might attract less of a crowd but at last you’ll attract the right crowd.

2) Be clear

It doesn’t hurt to say on your profile page what type of a partner you’re looking for. It also doesn’t hurt to spell out what you are NOT looking for. There’s no need to be rude or rubber stamp it. It’s perfectly okay to say things like: I’m mainly interested in a serious relationship so short flings and one night stands are not my cup of tea. Or vice versa. Either way you’re making your point clear to those with a different agenda – at least those who bother to read your profile.

3) Reply or not to reply?

Let’s make one thing clear. It is acceptable in online dating not to reply to an email. It’s not the nicest way, no, but still completely acceptable. So if you can spot a non-match from a mile away – if their email is a rather pointless copy and paste bulk type of a message or just pushing all the wrong buttons, you can exercise your right not to reply.

4) Truth or dare?

Still, you should consider a reply – even to someone you’re sure you’re not going to date – if the email they’ve sent to you is polite, considerate and genuinely interested. You can let them down nicely – it could be either with a little white lie (I’ve met someone here and I’m trying to see if it works out; I’m not sure we’d be a good match but best of luck on the site; Dog ate my homework and… er… well, you know) or with gentle honesty (You seem nice but not what I am looking for right now; I don’t really feel we have that much in common etc). Whatever works.

5) Be honest

What if you’ve emailed back and forth, spoken on the phone, settled that first date… and then things have gone horribly wrong and you’ve realised you aren’t really interested any more? Well, this is harder, because once you’ve moved the relationship outside the relatively safe boundaries of online dating and the relative anonymity a computer screen offers, the rules get a bit more rigid. It’s harder to just ignore someone’s messages or get away with a white lie. We recommend just facing the uncomfortable moment and simply tell the truth… then bear it. Things like that happen. They’ll get over it. You’ll get over it – and you don’t need to compromise your integrity to do so.

6) Block them

There’s also a chance that even after you’ve tried to let someone down politely or haven’t replied to their messages, they keep on bugging and harassing you. There’s no need to tolerate that. Most sites let you block a user which will usually put an end to it. If they continue to harass you by creating a new profile then report it directly to the website staff so they can take further action to ban them from using the site.

About the Author

has been reviewing and writing about the world of online dating since 2008 and the launch of Online Dating Help. A stickler for promoting ethical practices within the UK dating industry she champions the sites that get it right while highlighting those holding it back. You can follow her on Google+

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