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“Any advice for online dating?”

-Question submitted by Anonymous

Dannielle Says:

YEA. BE COOL ABOUT IT.

I feel like where we all fuck up with online dating is (1) not being totally honest, (2) trying to seem cooler than we are, (3) changing our own wants / needs so that we can just be GOING ON DATES.

(1) Be. fucking. real. This isn’t a job interview for something you want, but you know you’re not prepared for, you know? There’s no resume bullshitting. That will only put you in a position where you have to lie for the rest of your life. Imagine you went to Africa once and you told OKCupid that you go to Africa all the time? Then you fall in love with someone and you have to figure out how TF to tell them you actually only went once. And then they’re like WHAT ELSE ARE YOU LYING ABOUT.

(2) Calm. TF. Down. You are cool because you are you. Not because you are “a lot like Selena Gomez, TBH” … you know what I mean? You want someone to be into you because you’re being your very own dorky-cool self. You don’t want them to want a different version of you.

(3) If you want to be casually dating someone. CASUALLY DATE THEM. Don’t act like you’re looking for love when you’re looking to get laid. If you’re looking to fall in love DON’T ACT LIKE YOU’RE JUST LOOKING TO GET LAID.

Be chill. Be honest. Be dope. Be you.

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"I’m almost positive my best friend is in love with a catfish. How do I 1) be absolutely certain and, if he is, b) convince him to GET OUT before he’s even more crushed. I don’t want to make him feel dumb or like the love he feels isn’t real or valid."

- Question submitted by Anonymous

Dannielle Says:

I am of the mindset that currently everyone is being catfished. Clearly, I’m wrong.. not everyone on the internet is a fishcat- fishcat is way cuter than catfish- BUT the bottom line is SOME PEOPLE ARE FISHCATS.

I think it’s cool to talk to your friend about your fears, but make sure you aren’t being accusatory. If I were your friend and I met someone on the internet and fell head over heels and really felt like I could be myself and finally thought someone understood me and EVERYTHING WAS PERFECT, I would be really defensive of my internet lover. And if you approached me by saying “your internet lover is probably a fishcat,” I would be mad at you. HOWEVER, if you said “are you ever afraid INTERNETLUV might be a fishcat,” I would be more willing to have a conversaysh.

I would advise against trying to Veronica Mars / Harriet The Spy / SVU Detective Name the situation, ONLY BECAUSE if you are wrong, you will just be a creep. OH maybe you can suggest being a detective team to make sure internetluv isn’t a fishcat? If you do it together it isnt’ that weird… I think?

Kristin Says:

You must, must, must, approach this from a position of your own concerns, and not from a place of “you are being stupid and I know more than you.” Yes — you probably do have the upper hand on the knowledge end of things because love makes people’s eyeballs and heartballs all wonky and less reliable. HOWEVER, with the slightest suggestion of “i know more than you,” your friend’s ears will close and their feeling meter will instantly flip to angry/defensive.

I agree with Dannielle’s suggestion of a team effort — and this doesn’t have to mean a team spy effort, exclusively. Your friend is in love, which means they make not be entirely up for the idea of digging around with a spyglass and such (although that does sound like a total blast). Your team effort might just mean that you position yourself as the proud yet worrisome friend who needs a little more reassurance because you care about your friend’s heart so very much.

Just say something like, “I am so, so happy for you and I can’t wait until we both get to meet Juan Benjamin.” Then your friend will be like, “What do you mean when WE get to meet Juan Benji??” Then you’ll be like, “LISTEN, I WORRY ALL THE TIME AND IM SURE THAT EVERYTHING IS FINE BUT I’VE SEEN A LOT OF MOVIES AND YOU MEAN THE WORLD TO ME SO I JUST WANT TO BE THERE TO MAKE SURE EVERYTHING IS FINE AND MAKE SURE YOU ARE MEETING IN A PUBLIC PLACE AND PLEASE DON’T HATE ME DO YOU HATE ME CAN I JUST BE THERE FOR TEN MINUTES THANKS OKAY PHEWF.” Then collapse in a heap of friend-effort.

I don’t even know if your friend plans to meet Juan Benji anytime soon, but this will at least open up the conversation that you love your friend, you are happy for them, and you want to make sure they are safe (and that their heart is safe, too!).

If this is a situation where only feelings are at risk, be as supportive and as honest as possible without getting too involved.

IMPORTANT: If this is a situation where addresses or personal details are being exchanged, or they plan to meet, you either have a conversation with your friend explaining why that cannot and should not happen until they can be sure of this person’s intentions OR you immediately talk to someone else and make them aware of the situation.

Capeesh?

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"Hi Kristin and Dannielle, Do you guys have any suggestions on what to write as a first message to girls on online dating sites? I usually try and pick something specific in their profile and ask something or comment about it (let’s be honest, it’s usually about one of their favorite tv shows), but girls hardly ever respond. I guess I’m trying to treat it as a conversation starter, but maybe that’s not the right way to go? Thanks!"

- Question submitted by Anonymous

Dannielle Says:

This is SO HARD YOU GUYS. I think the absolute best suggestion I can give is BE YOUR SELF. I know it sounds stupid, but if I were to get a message that said “hey I think you’re attractive and we should meet up” I would roll my eyes and click ‘delete’ immediately. BUT HOWEVER THO, If I got a message that said “Hey I noticed you also cry while listening to Taylor Swift, so we have that in common…” I would giggle like an idiot and respond within four seconds.

It’s super important that you’re the same human online as you are in real life. If you message someone ‘hey sexy’ and they respond ‘letz hook up’ and then you hang out and you hide your face the whole time and giggle, it’s just GOING TO BE WEIRD. SO, be you. Be exactly the type of human you’re going to be WHILST dating someone.

The fact of the matter is, you wanna find someone who will like you for being nervous and uncomfortable and awkward. So, if you’re messaging someone and you say “hi, so … you like Pretty Little Liars…” and they roll their eyes and don’t respond, WHO CARES, why would you want them to respond anyway!? You know? You want the girl who will be like “LOL YEA I DO, OMG I’M SO AWKWARD AND YOU’RE AWKWARD LETS DATE.” Keep. Being. You.

Kristin Says:

Yeah… I think my advice would be to be yourself (as touted by the lovely Dannielle Owens-Reid) and also to let things evolve slowly.

If I got a message from someone that was like, “Hey, I’m also in Season 4 of Buffy OMG IT’S SO INTENSE RIGHT.” I would be like “AHHHH YES HOLY SHIT.” However, if the message was, “Hey, I totally watch Buffy, too, we should get together and watch it!” I would be like… I DON’T EVEN KNOW YOU STEP OFF.

Do you see what I mean? Let the point of your first contact be simple, to the point, and real.

Also, also – dating sites are not the best way to reflect on your abilities in getting dates. I know that sounds a little weird, but like, it is VERY difficult to get a grasp of someone’s personality through just a few sentences, a list of thoughts, and some pictures. So, when you don’t get a response from people – try to remember that it doesn’t reflect negatively on you as a person. Most times it has to do with a million other factors that are impossible to know through a computer screen.

All we can do is put ourselves out there and be nice. You are doing everything right – just be you, give it time and space, and you will find the people who share common interests and who are in the headspace to connect.

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