The recent gruesome death of Ingrid Lyne in Seattle has attracted much attention from single women and generated renewed awareness of the potential risks of online dating. However, I still think online dating is one of the best ways to meet someone special, especially for those people whose circumstances do not allow them to interact with other single people on a daily basis.
According to the Pew Research Center around 5% of Americans who are in a marriage or committed relationship say they met their significant other online. A study by the National Academy of Sciences found that more than one third of marriages in the USA begin with online dating, and those couples seem to be slightly happier than couples who meet through other means. Match.com reports that only 9% of women and 2% of men say they have found a relationship at a club or bar. The universe is clearly using the Internet to bring people together!
Many people wrongly assume that using an online dating service is the equivalent of throwing in the towel and screaming, ‘All right already, I’ll do it – I’m desperate!’ Actually, online dating is not for the desperate ~ Terri Orbuch
Of course, there is no truly ‘safe’ on line dating. Any form of dating where you are communicating with and meeting strangers, always carries an element of risk. However, there are some things you can do to make it safer and protect yourself. Keep in mind, most people these days have engaged in some form of online dating at some point, and the vast majority of those people come back home safe. Had this not been the case, online dating sites and apps would not continue to be so popular. However, there are risk factors that online daters need to take into consideration.
I know of several friends and clients who have had unpleasant, or even scary experiences with men they met online. One of my friends was followed home by a creepy guy. Fortunately, she was smart and noticed his motorcycle in the rear view mirror, and instantly knew something was wrong. She ran several red traffic lights to get rid of him, and became even more aware of the real danger she was in when he also ran every red light to keep up with her! Finally, she pulled up in front of a police station and he drove off. Had she not been so aware, she might have guided him directly to her house.
One of my friends had a man bully her into getting into a cab and go home with him. She calmly said, “Great… of course I will go with you… oops… I forgot my phone in the restaurant. Please wait for me here, I’ll be right back.” She then went into the restaurant and had the manager call the police.
I once had a client who said she refused to online date, because her friend had gone on an online date and ended up dead in the trunk of her car. I have no way of confirming this, but I do believe she was telling the truth.
I also had a client who was talking to a man for about a month before their first date. Because she felt she knew him and could trust him, she told him where she worked. She realized very quickly on the date, that he was not the person he projected to her on the phone. He made some bizarre and sexually inappropriate comments. After the date she never returned any of his texts or calls, so he contacted her work and told them she was on drugs. Knowing where she worked, this man created a lot of stress and embarrassment for her. Had she not had such an understanding boss, she could have lost her job.
If you’re feeling uncomfortable, something is wrong. Period. So get out. It doesn’t matter how charming and attractive the other person is, if the situation feels “off,” it probably is ~ Robert Weiss
So how can you protect yourself if you are online dating?
Trust your intuition. Nobody wants to live in fear, but we also should not live in naiveté. Trust your gut. It’s better to be suspicious and be wrong, than to ignore early warnings and come to harm. If it quacks like a duck, walks like a duck and acts like a duck, then it is a duck.
Don’t give anyone the benefit of the doubt. You don’t have to let anyone know that you are onto them, or suspicious of them. As a matter of fact, I don’t think that is wise. Once someone thinks you are rejecting them or doubtful of them, if they are dark or mentally ill, they may be more likely to cause you harm. Be warm and friendly and part ways without giving any clue that you are turned off. And never give any of your personal information.
Meet for lunch during the day for a first date. Always meet in a public place. Never meet at your house, or the other person’s house, until after you have had many, many dates and feel safe.
Talk on the phone before you go on a date, so you can get his phone number. Let him know in joking manner that you have given his information to a family member, or friend. Whenever you meet someone, make up an excuse to be cautious. Tell him, “My mom won’t let me go out on any date without giving her the guy’s information”. Or say, “My roommate waits up for me after online dates. She’s totally paranoid. But she’s sweet. I appreciate her caring.”
Never let a date know that you live alone. Make them think there are people who will know if you come home or not, and they are keeping an eye on you.
Pass any and all information that comes up in a conversation on to your contact person – where he works, his hometown, what kind of car he drives, his ex’s first name. Your contact person should be someone you know to be reliable and whom you can count on. This person should know where you are going, when you are coming home and should know to call the police if you don’t arrive or contact them on time.
Copy and paste your date’s profile and picture to your contact person. Even though people sometimes use false information and pictures, the dating website should be able to find him later with that information.
In my experience, most online dates are harmless. I have never felt my safety threatened on or after a date and I feel very fortunate. Regardless, I’m prepared. I certainly sleep better (so does my mom), knowing I’ve taken steps to online date in a responsible way ~ Shani Silver
Keep your cell phone charged and switched on at all times during dates. Keep it hidden from view and on your person. If you are missing, this can be a very effective way of tracking and finding you.
Do not let the person know where you’ve parked, or let them walk you to your car. As a matter of fact, it’s better to send a pretend text at the end of the date letting him know your friend is picking you up, so you have an excuse to wait at the restaurant or meeting place after he has left.
Don’t ever leave your purse or phone, or anything with your personal information, unattended… even for a second.
Stay sober. Being intoxicated will numb your intuition and defenses. Pay attention to red flags before and on the date. Requests for explicit pictures, sexual texts and innuendos are not appropriate for someone you have never met in person. Gentlemen and men looking for a partner in life, who respect women, don’t talk to unknown women like that.
Don’t give your last name to a person until you are in a relationship. In the day and age of the Internet, a first and last name can get an address and a lot of other information no stranger should have.
Make sure the home address in your Global Positioning System (GPS) in your car or on your phone is not your real address. Use the local police station address instead. That way you can get close enough from any location to find your way home without that information being accessible to anyone. Don’t tell anyone what town you live in or where you work until you are in a relationship.
If you feel uncomfortable or scared on a date, ask the manager to have someone walk you to your car. Park close to the venue and periodically look into your rear view mirror as you drive home from a date, to make sure you aren’t being followed.
The vast majority of online dates are perfectly safe. Don’t live your life in fear, just be smart and protect yourself. Remember the golden rule, “better safe than sorry”.
| PsychicAccess.com.Satya lives in Northern California and is a natural Clairvoyant, Empath, Conduit, teacher, author, animal lover, healer, Reiki Master and an advanced yoga instructor. She has provided valuable psychic assistance to Hollywood stars, athletes, and everyone else in-between. A multi-layered Intuitive, with many unique gifts at her disposal, she can give you a doorway into the past as well as a gateway to a happier future. With her long distance energy work, she provides healing for people and animals too! She instantly spots karmic connections from past lives that directly affect current situations, helping clients to move through them quickly. For accurate solutions on just about any pressing problem, you can find Satya at |
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