Thursday, July 28, 2016

Online dating: yea or nay?

After receiving a number of dull and un-original messages on the dating website you decided to try out, finally, to your surprise there was a message that stood out, that was real and not generic for a change. So of course you joyfully responded and that signified the beginning of a relationship (there’s a reason I’m avoiding describing it as ‘wonderful’).   You have spent hours upon hours talking to him over messages and most importantly on Skype where you have even left your cameras on while sleeping so that you get that satisfaction that you have somehow spent the night together. Skype has enabled you to cook together, watch movies together, to listen to him singing soothing songs to you when you needed someone to help you calm down, to read the bible together, to feel each other’s presence during busy times of the day by leaving your cameras on whilst being preoccupied with other things.
After months of talking nearly 24/7, the time has finally come for the grand face to face meeting.  Tickets have been booked (you are scared of flying so he’s flying to you), plans and dreams have been made, excitement and expectations are high since declarations of love have been repeatedly made over Skype.  You expected your first meeting to be something like out of a movie; your eyes would meet amongst the crowd at the airport and you would run towards each other in slow motion into the biggest, most romantic hug in the world, followed of course by a passionate kiss.
 However, life is not a movie, and Skype is not real life. Yes there was an awkward like hug, because even though you have spent countless hours talking and getting to know each other, sharing your deepest thoughts and feelings, at the end of the day you were both “hiding” behind a camera.  When you are chatting to someone over Skype, or any other form of video calling, you cannot really determine whether or not there’s any chemistry between you, any physical attraction.  You fall in love with an image, with the psychological support they offer that you so desperately need, with their bubbly personality.  Don’t get me wrong, that relationship could turn out to be the best relationship you’ve ever had, he could even be “the one”, the so called love of your life.
Nevertheless, let me get real with you, when you are both “hiding” behind a camera then you don’t notice, hear or smell the end result of any sort of bodily function or any unpleasant odour.  Should you need your space then you can very easily turn the camera off and that person goes away until either one of you wishes to commence chatting again (which doesn't happen in real life!). You don’t see their clumsiness, their messiness and their awkward interactions with other people due to the fact that they suffer from social anxiety and ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder).  All in all, you don’t see the real person. When you finally meet in real life there’s no chemistry, there’s no attraction and you’re left wondering what went wrong, why you don’t feel anything for that person when you felt like you were on top of the world when talking to them on Skype. 
Don’t worry though, that is just one scenario out of the many that can take place when meeting your online love interest.  Word of advice though, keep everything at a realistic level; your expectations, your enthusiasm, your plans and dreams so that when you do see them face to face, when your eyes do meet through the crowd, then you just might be pleasantly surprised.