Online Dating: A Male’s Perspective

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photo (2)A guy friend of mine and I recently got into a conversation about his experience in online dating. He’s been reading my girlfriend’s stories and wondered if I’d want him to write-up his perspective. Did Christmas come early? As women, we analyze and then over analyze what little we know of the male brain to no end. If you are offering me a window in, I will take it.

So here you go! Oh.. he needs a nickname…. Let’s just call him E.

So I have to admit I signed up for online dating with much grumbling at first. From a guy’s perspective, our pride constantly tells us that, “I am too good for this,” or “Signing up for a site is too desperate…she will come.” But after years of her not “just coming” I thought, “What could it hurt? Besides I won’t tell anyone I am on it.”

So I looked for the free ones because again, “paying for an online dating website was for losers.” But not long after swimming with “” I soon figured out that most of those were bombarded with profiles that were titled, “Just looking for some fun,” or “If you can have fun, then you can’t have nun” …just trashy girls really.
I’d like to believe myself to be a good guy; I have a good head on my shoulders, a career, a car, an apartment (just got one but still…), I get along with people, I would like to humbly say I am good-looking, and I hold to a Christian world view with Christian morals. So trashy was out, and it was on to the Christian websites.
I found some free ones, but the free ones never came with a large enough “fish pond” to sort through. After looking on some of those I found there to be some really unattractive women on there. And I will stand by view that the person you look for needs to be attractive both inside and out. You should never feel as if you settled, I don’t want a girl settling for me and I don’t want to feel as if I settled for some girl either. So being physically attractive was a priority on my list. And I would say that it is a priority for all guys. I don’t consider myself a “sexist pig” or a “horny” guy and people who know me would never give me those labels, however when looking for a girl, she first has to pass my physical attraction test.
The physical attraction test doesn’t really consist of anything really tedious or overly critical list, but I would say, it’s a list that everyone would consider the “must haves.”
The Must Haves: Physical
– must have a cute face/smile (If I potentially have to look at you everyday for the rest of my life since I essentially date to marry, then you better be cute to me. You don’t have to be drop dead gorgeous but you have to be cute enough.)
– must have good hygiene (This is typically found out on the date or in person. Bad breath, body odor, acne, crust in your eyes as if you just woke up…these are all pretty much deal breakers.)
That’s it physically! You don’t have to have this “supermodel body” and all that mumbo jumbo. The requirement for me is cute and well taken care of. Anything above that is a plus for me. I feel sorry for the guys who expect perfection and they themselves are far from it…I have a few friends like this…they are single haha.
The Must Haves: Personality:
– Must be Christian (One who lives it out and has morals)
– Must not be prideful
– Must not be rude
– Must not be boring (In other words we know the very quiet people out there who really have no personality at all? That’s not my cup of tea! I want to be able to have a conversation with someone, not be the one doing all the talking. So someone with a little life, able to express their views, opinions, and interests.)
– Must have a sense of humor – (Please be able to laugh and joke about things, life,…whatever it may be. If you cannot take a joke or anything of that nature I wont bother with you.)
– Must be caring and loving
Everything else is pretty much an addition. Ultimately I am looking for a girl who I can share life with and we have some similar interests. In other words I probably wont date a girl who loves opera and quiet nights at home reading…..Anybody in their right mind would want to date someone with some similar interests…
So that’s my mindset as I look for the girl on Christian websites. I have somewhere along the line allowed my pride to move by the wayside and pay for the good ones such as Christianmingle or Eharmony. Yes I have tried both and so far no luck.
It wasn’t long after my time with E-harmony that I figured out that I would rather try Christianmingle. Guys are visual by nature and so rather than waiting for E-harmony to send me some “matches” that they think would work well with my preferences and personality, I thought the “free browsing” through profiles on Christianmingle was more convenient because it allowed me to quickly sift through a number of profiles quickly using my “must have physical test.”
Not long after I got a date. She lived about 30 minutes away from me so that was already a plus. Her pictures all passed my physical must have test, her profile described a girl with morals, who went to church weekly, and we shared some similar interests. All signs pointed to go. So I messaged her, which might I add is the hardest thing for guys. Why? Because we don’t know what to say? We typically stare at your profile for minutes trying to figure out how to not sound “cheesy.” Do we keep it short and just say, “Hi” or do we find something on your profile that stuck out to us and conjure up some way of adding it to the same ol “came across your profile and saw that you liked….” or “anyways just stopping by to say hi, hope to hear back from you.”
The truth is we have no clue. Woman these days have made it so hard for a guy to approach them with anything because everything to a woman seems like a “cheap line.” Or they just ignore or shrug you off. Especially here in Orange County; Seems like every girls requirement in is white boy, blond hair, washboard abs, a lot of money and a good car. Then woman hope that there is at least some good qualities and personality traits that can come with the predetermined requirements. But anyways, back to what I was saying; We don’t know what to say. The truth is we are nervous and already feeling low for being on an actual website that we find something to say, and pray that it works as we quickly hit “send!”
So many thoughts….how to keep this a readable length… Ok. I’ll hit two points.

1. Lists

We all have some form of a test or checklist that we use while dating and yet we slightly resent that our date is using one on us. It feels judgemental when it’s coming our way. My brother and I were talking the other day about lists and whether they were a good idea or a bad idea. We both agreed that the real sign of a good prospect is when you forget the list all together. When you’re super aware of how someone is or isn’t preforming, you are probably trying to convince yourself you feel something you don’t. Anyway, that’s our 2 cents.

2. What to say

I’m so glad E brought up what a guy should say when approaching a girl! Honestly, it’s simple. Say hi. Just say hi. Be it email or in person, that’s all you need. You won’t believe the things guys try. Just last weekend, one gentleman approached our table and asked if we’d like to play a game. In the bar. Nope. I wouldn’t suggest trying to be “creative” or “different” since I’ve never once heard any of my friends say that was something they were looking for in this interaction. Want to know what we all say we want when meeting a guy? NORMAL. So be that..

The truth is, your success has very little to do with your method. Your demise can, if you do something weird or awkward, but not your success. If she likes you, she’ll find whatever you do endearing and tell her friends about it. I’m not an expert, but I’d send a friendly low-key email instead of an over-the-top one to be on the safe side.
There are no solid rules that will eliminate the element of risk involved in dating. Everyone gets rejected, it’s just part of the deal. I don’t envy guys’ role in this and I can see why E finds it scary. But if you are up for it, just give a hello and ask her how her night is going. Be genuinely interested and the rest is up to _________ (chemistry, fate, personality dimensions, God, Adele, Tequilia…pick your love source)
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56 responses to “Online Dating: A Male’s Perspective”

  1. Brandon says:

    Haha good stuff Cindy ..Adele and tequila eh?! Haha

  2. Becky says:

    As if online dating didn’t already intimidate me, this added to it! lol I hate the idea of reading about someone to see if he is a match, and same for the other way around. I don’t want to write all the things I think I am just to wait for someone to decide if I passed their test or “list”. I realize it then goes back to, well where do you find people? where do you go to meet single Christian men then? I have no idea, Which is why I realized I will be probably be single for a while. haha Good luck to E, and the other online daters – I hope to hear a success stories that make me a little less intimidated! :)

    • Becky! I’m right there with you! All I can do is picture guys trolling profiles and saying “next.” Nope. I think it would bring out a bad side in me, too. I love that you thought this meant you’d be single for awhile! still feels preferable to going online at the moment to me, too. hahaha. You never know;)

  3. Harmony says:

    Hello E!

    Thanks so much for sharing! As a fellow online dater, it was great and encouraging (on many levels) to hear from someone who is in the same boat :).

    I’m glad you were honest about the physical attraction thing! I feel the same way. Did you know that eHarmony was originally set up for no one to see any pictures at all?! Clearly, that was never going to work…

    What has always impressed me when I have received an email from a guy is that he says hi and asks me one question about something on my profile. It says to me that one, he has looked and my pictures and liked them (that’s why he wrote me), and two, he actually read what I took the time to write about. That’s appreciated.

    And Cindy, you’re right about the list and the rejection thing. The more you put yourself out there the more possibilities of finding a good date. And yet with all the new possibilities comes the greater number of chances for rejection.

    Eh has given me thick skin in a good way I think!

    Good luck to you, E!

    P.S. I have only ever heard terrible things about Plenty O Fish.

  4. Alecia says:

    Good stuff, Cndy. Thanks E and thanks Harmony (VERY creative, by the way.) One thing I really appreciate about you Cindy, is your desire for balance. )Of course having someone offer to write a blog post for you is a big bonus, especially at Christmas and with deadlines looming!) But getting a guys perspective is good for the girls, the guys and the site! Once again, I am sooooooooo glad to be out of the dating game! Seems way more complicated than when I was in eons ago.

    • I appreciate that, Alecia! I get so excited whenever I have the opportunity to show the other side, too. I find it fascinating and helpful. Oh…you are SO lucky to be out of the game;) It’s pretty ridiculous out there. But I do have to say, it can be really fun and exciting, too. There are days when I’m ready to be done but a few when I’m really glad I’m not. You never know what the next day holds and a part of me loves this!

  5. Jason says:

    I’ve worked with young adults for the past 18 years. As I read this post, I suddenly realized that while I had encouraged several young women to go for it with the online dating stuff, I have yet to encourage one man to do it. Honestly, I think part of this is the fact that more women have asked me whether they should do it (I’m trying to think if I’ve had a guy ask for advice on this subject). But, I think “E” also helped me see that from a guy’s perspective it seems a bit more humiliating. Of course the irony is that you kinda need both men and women to sign-up in order for this thing to work! I think I’ll be a bit more proactive in the future to encourage the decent guys I know to go ahead and give it a whirl.

    • Interesting…. I wonder how many guys get encouraged to sign-up compared to women and why that is. I think in the “real” dating world, women typically have to wait for a guy to make a move. Online gives you a non aggressive way to put yourself out there. Anyway, my favorite part was that you’d only encourage decent guys. Thanks for that!:)

  6. E says:

    Harmony, Good luck to you too! It is always encouraging to read your stories and I find myself definitely thinking about some of the things you and Cindy both say!

    Sadly the dating “game” has become almost like fishing. Why? #1. It’s a game that I hate to play because I never know how to use my bait properly. #2. Once I catch a fish, it’s exciting, but then the question that no one ever wants to admit that we ask ourselves is, “Is this a good fish now that I caught it.”

    We live in an over critical world where things are constantly in competition over us, IPhones and Ipods come out nearly every 6 months to a year. Clothing industries are constantly evolving, while living in Orange County doesn’t help; We are constantly asking the question, is it/he/her good enough. Sadly most people are never satisfied and as a result our covetousness has become an epidemic.

    God has started to show me that I will find that “fish” when I am happy with myself, and my true contentment and joy comes solely in Him.

    Jason, I find that younger guys often care less about online dating because high school and college play a big role in allowing them to naturally be placed in good ponds. It’s after that high school/college era, that they look for something more then a “hook up” and don’t know where to go. They consider online dating, but their pride frightens them from it. Honestly some of them are probably on it, and wont admit. That’s how I was at first.

    Good luck again Harmony!
    Thanks again for the advice Cindy


  7. I think this is fantastic and I love E-money’s honesty. The one thing I have to say and first need to state that I TOTALLY get how daunting approaching women has to be and have said more than once how glad I am that I am not a man and can get away with never having to ask someone out based on social structure (even if that’s only half of why I don’t). That said, I’d also like to say that although I understand the sentiment “Woman these days have made it so hard for a guy to approach them with anything because everything to a woman seems like a ‘cheap line,'” the reality is that for myself and most of my single girl friends, the reason we feel wary of “cheap lines” is that we have been fed quite a few and more than likely fallen for several. I don’t believe that every guy is full of s**t, but finding a vetting system has proven difficult and perhaps is not all our fault. Check your boys E-$$, make sure they aren’t poisoning the pond for all you (assuming) good ones. Good luck and I know a lot of single incredible girls if you decide you’d like to go offline….but I’ll need to see a picture first. :)

    • First of all, thank you for call him E Money. Because it was hysterical. As was the part about the picture. And secondly, I agree with you about the problem being partially on the guys. Morgan and I were just talking about this while heading out last weekend. She turned to me and said, “Remember when we used to go out full of expectation and promise? Like hey, nice to meet you, let’s be friends…. Now I don’t expect to meet anyone decent.” We’ve all been burned too many times to go back to the happy place. Thanks for your thoughts!

      • YES! And even Christian guys that I have met at church, through friends, etc, it feels as though they often have calculated answers that are the “right” answers. By no means is this ALL guys, but it does create a certain wall, I’d say.

        p.s. I just realized this posted as ‘hitonbythehomeless,’ which makes me supppper mysterious.

        • Ya… The bad Christian lines might be worse seeing as how it usually involves throwing God under the bus at some point…ugh

          Hitonbythehomelss does make u mysterious! Anyone reading this should go read you. They won’t regret it!

      • E says:

        If I could go out and put every guy in check for being a punk then I would believe me. They do give good guys a bad rap. But let me ask you this in regards to playing it more safe….If you spent most of your time playing it safe and not giving guys a real chance “like the old days” then aren’t you just waiting for something more convenient rather then someone you can fall head over heals for?

        I think in the back of a woman’s mind she is hoping for her prince charming to come and rescue her…awwwww. He doesn’t have to have excellent everything to everyone, but he has to basically sweep YOU off your feet. And that’s somewhat fair…I get it….but if we are hoping for fairy tails to come true then I am reminded of Rapunzel ( who let down her long golden hair for the prince to climb up and visit her, giving him the opportunity to sweep her off her feet! But today, If prince charming came, I don’t think most girls would bother to even let down their hair to let the poor guy in! The prince heard Rapunzel singing and asked, “let down your hair that I may come up.” So she did and boom….one happy story.

        It’s as almost girls today rather then “letting their hair down” would rather say…”Find your own way!” or “Work for it!” Which is by no means, is motivating but somewhat shows us your more not interested. Don’t get me wrong I think that most guys wouldnt mind working for something as long as there was promise….but it comes off as if we are working toward our looming doom ahead.

        Maybe a little advice from E?
        I think yes! 😉

        “Let down your hair.” Show us we have a chance please haha. Give us a way into your life….Let us know that if we have to work for you, that the job is doable, because we are already convinced your worth the work, we are just concerned if there is a payoff of actually winning your heart!

        Just my thoughts

  8. I so enjoyed this!!! I have heard a few (mostly depressing) stories of one guy I know (who shall remain nameless!) who is on a dating website. All of these things sound familiar. He finds it difficult. He feels ridiculous at times… and sometimes he just wants a normal girl, too. A cute, normal girl, I should say! ha I don’t know much about online dating but I’ve seen so many different outcomes, from weddings to not a single match up in an entire month. I’d love to read more of these!

  9. I don’t know why I can’t comment on your above comment to me, E-$$, but I like what you said and may in fact quote it somewhere at some point (with the credit going to “E-$$,” of course). By the way, I don’t need your advice, I am a strong independent woman who doesn’t need anyone (just kidddin’).

  10. Becky says:

    We all want love. It just depends on what you want in love, most girls say they want love but most of them want the sweep your off your feet type of love which means the total package – good job, good looks, and a white horse.
    Most guys want, a hot girl, that can cook, clean, be a mother and stay sexy all the time forever.
    If more people were just looking for simple true love as there first priority, we would all be better off.

  11. YES! I think you are right, Becky! We both struggle over the shallow parts of the opposite sex. It’s hard to pick a spouse for the right reasons, keeping in mind the long haul of a life time together. In your experience, would you say you’ve encountered more girls or guys who struggle to do this well?

  12. E says:

    I don’t know what guy would turn down an easy catch because I wouldn’t. A guy who complains that there wasn’t enough “chase” has probably got some ego issues. Just because your perhaps and easier catch doesn’t necessarily mean you’re a whore! Frankly girls who aren’t grounded in good morals and typically just throw sex out there to try and keep a man have created that slogan if you will. (This just got really crazy huh? ahaha)

    I think Becky was right…we have all had some unreal expectations that have frankly decided our relationships. We need to get back to good ol love! Just love!

    Why can’t a girl confidently say hi to guy and strike up a conversation both in person or online dating websites without thinking she’s being too easy? That’s just dumb…issues with self worth perhaps?1

    Why can’t a girl take a chance without so many reservation that keep her from really letting go when talking to a guy or dating one? Controlled by fear perhaps?!

    Why are women so driven by this defensive and feminist attitude these days? Sure your strong willed and independent…..but your single! You chase the men away! haha happy with being single perhaps? Complaints merely a front perhaps?

    Maybe woman like the idea of love but not the truth of it; sacrificial love. Simply meaning you have to submit a little. Guys need to as well. But come on now? Something to be said about the article Cindy posted. “guys haven’t had a revolution, woman had….women have changed.”

    Guys cant take the blame forever.

    This is just E Taking a Stand

  13. Becky says:

    Thanks E!
    So in response to Rapunzel thing and this – Cindy, I am with you! Guys if you are interested – Let us know, because we are waiting for you and we won’t make it terribly hard for you if we are interested. It reminds me of the movie Hitch “Guys go 90% girls go 10%” (thats in regards to the kiss, but I think it goes for a lot of things) Guys I know that seems like a lot, but if you could get the initial steps out of the way you would be good to go!
    So E – When you say, “Why can’t a girl confidently say hi to guy and strike up a conversation both in person or online dating websites without thinking she’s being too easy? That’s just dumb…issues with self worth perhaps?”
    I don’t think it is a matter of thinking we are “easy” but it is a matter of wanting a guy to make the first move! Girls want you to take the first steps – and if we are interested we will let you know.
    Guys – why can’t you just say Hi? no cheesy pick up lines, or funny flirty, googly eyes – just Hi!

    I am far from a feminist, and hope they didn’t ruin it for the rest of us – I can truly say I would like a guy to do the “manly” things, and I am completely content with the “womanly roles”!

    • HereIam says:

      I will say 50 percent of men are tools. The thing I’m not buying is that women are oblivious when it comes to guys motives. I also notice that the majority of good men are put in the friend zone aka the Abyss! Good guys should be in the win zone! Ladies you are messing up playing games and hard to get. When you get in your 20s games became ridiculous be straight forward with intentions.

      • Becky says:

        Well Mr. hereIam, (assuming you are a guy)
        Agreed, girls are not oblivious when it comes to guys motives – if you are pursuing us, we know it. If we aren’t interested we will make it known – (or we should) which might get you in the friend zone (its ok she wasn’t the one) – but I think the friend zone also happens because guys won’t tell us what they want, and don’t ever make that next move so that’s where they stay.
        I was talking to guy friend about it today – and I said
        “what would you want a girl to do to show she you liked you?”
        Him: “talks to you…laughing and all that cute stuff..she seems more interested in you, by asking maybe about your day or more about your life….im not just the one keeping the conversation going, but she is too. A compliment is always good”
        Me: “Ok, I think (or hope) most girls would do this if they were interested in a guy – right then I think its your turn – go for it! Ask her out, ask for her number, balls in your court!”
        He agreed and said “when you make it known, it’s our move, no mixed signals, singling yourselves out from not just a friend material”

        If you don’t go after it after the girl shows interest – you might be friend zoned because the girl doesn’t know what happened, she put the charm on – and you didn’t act on it. I’d say the same to you – be straight forward.

      • You’re are a waste of time and the friend zone is a terrible place we’ve all found ourselves in at one point or another.

    • Becky! I’m with you! My friends and I aren’t anything close to feminists. If we were, we would do all the things E suggests! We would be making the moves and doing their jobs for them. So which is it? You want us to do your job? Or you want us to stop doing it for you so that you can feel needed? Honestly, the reason I don’t approach guys is becuase I’m really only interested in dating a guy that has the confidence to try, or the the ability to take a risk. Every guy I’ve dated in the past has made it happen all on his own. There are definately still guys out there who will make the first move when it is worth it to them and I prefer to date one of date those. I’m not interested in making it super easy on some guy who wants the whole thing handed to them on a silver platter. There, I said it:) It’s just how I was raised.

      • HereIam says:

        Men have to make the first move! No question! I’m saying after they make that move, be honest and make your intentions clear as well. Don’t string a good guy along if you want him as a friend only and selfishly want attention and nothing else.

      • HereIam says:

        Old school way of things needs to come back!

      • I agree with everything you just said, Cindy — I have zero desire to play games, but I also like the guy to make the first move. I have in the past and it usually sets a precident that I don’t prefer.
        Along with that, I have seen SO MANY of my girlfriends do quite the opposite, show sooooo much interest and end up hanging on long after everyone else can see the writing on the wall. I am not saying that, that is the way to do it either, but I have seen that happen far more than “I am going to act uninterested, but I am so into him.”
        The reality also stands that perhaps if she is acting uninterested….she is. That sounded meaner than I meant it to, but heck, I have had plenty of guys act uniterested in me, because they are in fact, uniterested in me! (shocking, I know, I know — crazy fools)

      • Becky says:

        Amen Cindy, Me either! I honestly think we make it easy enough! Lets hear it E! :)

  14. E-Mon, Maybe you should ask one of out and see how we respond (I for one will be coy and say no 12 times before I finally say yes, FYI).

  15. E says:

    Ok well then let me make it real clear
    Flirt and make it known that you are interested. And if you’re not, let a guy down easy. Don’t be cold hearted about it and send the guy off like he had no chance! And if you’re interested, don’t play games because you can’t make up your mind….Either you’re in or out…no “in-between.”

    Also there is something to be said about all of us responding with our wishes and desires. Lets remember that we are all single too. So what we want, and what we thinks works best says very little. Ultimately I think we are somewhat disqualified! I think with that said, there should be a little give on each side is all Im saying….in the name of love.

    The opportunity for true love has no boundaries, no sets of rules, no reservations. Love is like lion after the heart of those in his way!

    And Cindy/Becky….Don’t hand it to us on a silver platter, but can we maybe have just the silverware? Gives us just that 10% and we will work for the rest. :)

  16. Becky says:

    After 40 comments I think we agree! 😉 Yay for being single and having all the answers right? not! 😉 haha! I say the first one to get someone here gets bragging rights! 😉

  17. E says:

    grow some balls huh? Coming from someone who plays it safe with hopes of not getting disappointed? (Had to be said) I mean let’s be honest we have all been disappointed, but trusting no one couldn’t be the answer?

    Take a chance and live each day spontaneously waiting for love because love is unpredictable. It can come from the most unexpected direction in the most unfamiliar ways. What about the guy for going above and beyond for trying to win you over? He might not win you, because it was too “cheesy” for you, but some other girl will be lucky to have him for going above and beyond…while you lonelily criticize his unfamiliar and uncanny efforts.

    Take a chance doesnt mean throw yourself out there. Im just saying “Red Lipstick” and a cute dress isn’t our cue to make a move. It just shows you have fashion. What tells us you are interested (even remotely) is conversation, laughs, and a little flirtatiousness. If that’s asking too much, then maybe you should date a “HUNTER” since he’s likely the guy up for big game :)

  18. Jess says:

    OMG, give me E.’s contact info, because he sounds so much like me! That is, if he’s still single 😉

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