The terms “online dating” and “dating online” are used all the time, primarily referring to the ability to connect singles over the internet. But, in reality, what do these terms mean? Can you really date someone online? Can you have a healthy dating life if it only exists online? How can you truly get to know someone if you’ve only been on online dates? Do those really count as ‘real’ dates?
Generally, dating online usually refers to the process of meeting people for potential dates online, or through an internet dating service. These services provide a platform for individuals to find and introduce themselves to other members and potential people to date. In this sense, online dating services act as an arena for singles to come and find other people interested in pursuing the same types of relationships as them.
The “dating” that takes place online is in the form of messages and emails that pass between people. Does this count as “real dating” even though there are no face to face conversations? Is ‘dating’ the time where people get to know more about each other? Do you have to be in the same room as someone to be on a ‘date’ with them?
Although online dating is usually described as meeting, messaging, emailing, and eventually meeting other singles in person, the terms seem to be fairly accurate. Dating online can, and does take place, when two people find each other online and pursue a courting period, whether that is on or offline, where they get to know each other better and test the waters to see if there is a mutual attraction.
Although an in-person meeting may not take place until later, many of the same components (aside from the physical) take place through a date online. Although dating online isn’t defined in the same way as traditional dating, the changes many people are experiencing in their romantic and sexual lives due to technological evolutions, may warrant redefining certain terms. Just as these advances have reconceived our notions of how to find love.
A fine line does need to be drawn, however, between ‘getting to know someone’ and determining whether you want to date them – and dating exclusively online. There have been cases where people have been scammed because someone has drawn another person in online. Telling them they loved them, that they would be able to meet soon, but that meeting never coming (or if it does it’s not the real person). Then comes the heart wrenching ‘stories’ about needing medical treatment, someone dying or some other supposed tragedy. These people play on others emotions, kindness, the need for love and being wanted. NEVER GIVE MONEY TO ANYONE ONLINE. Just don’t do it.
Incidentally, this isn’t just a problem in the online world, it’s happened to people who have met through so-called traditional means. Of course, there’s always exceptions to the rule, but it does pay to be wary when getting to know someone new. Whilst we don’t want to be skeptical of others, it’s better not to reveal any financial means in the early days of a relationship. Whether this is online or offline.
As with everything in life, it requires a healthy level of common sense. It can be difficult no doubt when it comes to matters of the heart. But if we do take these cautions on board, it leaves us open to getting the best out of online dating – and dating in general. And with technology today, it’s become easier than ever to be able to connect with others. And utilised sensibly, that’s ultimately got to be a good thing.