Digital Dating – Tips for Your Online Profile

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In this day and age, it’s rare to find anyone who’s actively looking for dates, mates or anything in between who doesn’t have an online profile of some sort.  Hell, most partnered or married guys I know have one as well (joys of open relationships..).

No matter what you’re looking for – casual dates, random hook-ups, something more long term – there’s something to be said about how you present yourself online.  Your online profile is like your calling card, and if you leave it blank or too vague, then you may not get the results you’re looking for.

I don’t think there’s an exhaustive list of ‘Do’s and Don’ts’ when it comes to all this, but it doesn’t hurt to bear a few things in mind when creating your online presence.  It’s all about giving a brief, general snapshot of yourself to get someone interested.

Put a clear profile photo

The whole point of a profile picture is to determine compatibility and whether you’re attracted to the other person.  If you’re not willing to show who you are, then why the hell are you even online to begin with?

awkwardAdmittedly, it could be the situation where the person isn’t out for whatever reason and is afraid if they’re found online they could lose their job, family, or any other things.  Or perhaps they’re married/partnered and only online looking for a bit of fun on the side, and they’re afraid their ‘honey’ will catch them (run away.. run far far away..).

But then there are those who’ll refuse to put up a pic or even sent one once you’re chatting, but insist that you should meet.  At your place because they can’t host (or be seen with a man in public..).  All without you know what they look like.

Sounds like a recipe for trouble.

Know and disclose your status

It’s astounding how, in this day and age of awareness, that there are still guys out there who don’t know their HIV status and don’t do anything to find out.  It may not be ‘fun’ getting yourself tested, but isn’t that better than suddenly finding out you’ve been infected and have no clue when or how?

Not only that, but there seems to be this ignorant stigmatism that anyone who’s HIV+ is somehow ‘unclean’.  It’s not like it’s something you can wash away with a  vigorous shower.  And let’s be honest, you’re more likely to get infected by someone who doesn’t even know their status than someone who’s aware, on meds, and probably has a low/non-existent viral load because of it.

And if you don’t want to date someone who’s positive?  Well, then don’t.  Just don’t be an uneducated idiot by using the word ‘clean’.

Preferences don’t allow racial profiling

grindrEvery guy out there has an idea or fantasy of what their perfect guy looks like, and for many that can include their potential partner’s race or ethnicity.  Who hasn’t seen profiles with ‘No Blacks/Asians/Arabs/etc’ on them.  And all that’s doing is limiting yourself to your own prejudices.

Types can change over time.  And just because you hadn’t previously had experiences with someone from a certain ethnicity, it doesn’t mean that you won’t in the future.  And to specifically put that on your profile, then you’re just showing how closed minded you can be.

And on that note….

‘Masc4Masc Only’ or ‘No fats, no femmes’

Once again, regardless how much you may say this is your preference, but to someone reading you profile it could be a blow to their self-esteem.

images11One of the great things about life these days is there are no set rules for what is masculine or how a man should act.  Life is quite gender fluid, even if it’s within your own gender.  It’s buying into and reinforcing those gender stereotypes we’ve all fought so hard to get past.

And though you might say it’s not your problem, by being dismissive and bitchy towards someone you may not be physically attracted to just reinforces the body-shaming issues they may already be dealing with.

If someone you’re not attracted to gives you a compliment, then just politely accept it and move on.  Simple.

Don’t massage the figures

We’ve seen it.. guys who lie on their profiles about their age, weight, height, or even their cock size all in fear of being rejected.  However, what’s the point?  All that’ll happen is you’ll end you being rejected for lying about any of those things, and not the item you had issue with itself.

If there’s something you’re afraid guys will judge you on, then why not just omit it to begin with?  If it’s something that comes up in conversation down the line, then you can choose whether you want to reveal the information.

And along the same lines, what’s the point of using a photo taken several years ago that no longer looks anything like you?  All you’re doing is setting yourself up for awkwardness later on and possible rejection.

In the end the best thing to do is just be honest, project a positive outlook on life, and ultimately just be yourself.  Because after all, it’s the real you want them to fall for.

This post has been influenced by — Five things no gay man should put on their dating app profile

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Warning Signs You’re in Bad Company

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Let’s be honest.. sometimes it’s hard to meet truly good friends.  People who are willing to be there for you when you’re in need, no matter what is going on in their lives or yours.  People who will be open and honest with you, without judging you or making you feel like you’re bothering them.

And sometimes it’s hard to tell if that so-called friend truly is a friend to you, or if they’re just using you for their own agenda.

Personally, I’ve always had difficulty making friends and don’t have many truly good ones in my life.  Because of this, I’ve been too willing to allow those in my life that I shouldn’t just so I can feel like I have people in my life.  And I have an even harder time to realise when someone shouldn’t be my friend.

So maybe this list will help me (and you) become more aware of who my true friends are.

They only make time for you when it’s convenient for them.

Sure, we all get busy at times.  But if it gets to the point where you feel like you’re begging your ‘friends’ to spend time with you, then they obviously aren’t interested in cultivating the relationship and you should move on.  Even if that seems like the hardest thing in the world.

If you find your ‘friend’ only calls on you when they’ve got nothing else going on, then they truly don’t respect your time or your worth as a friend.

They hold your past against you.

We all have pasts, and some of us have mistakes in our pasts we’d rather move on from to build a better future and learn from the past.  But if your ‘friend’ consistently brings up your past as a way to hold you back, then all they’re doing is trying to hold you back from moving forward in life.

This could be that they refuse to accept that you’ve changed from who you used to be, or that you’ve moved past your mistakes.  Or it could be that they’re afraid that if you move on with your life that you’ll leave them behind.  And perhaps that’s exactly what you should do.

Sassy-Gay-Friend-2You feel trapped.

There’s nothing worse than feeling pigeon-holed in a restricted environment because your ‘friend’ wants to keep you in a box where they’ll be able to always find you.

A truly healthy relationship that thrives is one that keeps the doors and windows wide open, to allow everyone to come and go as they please.  And to give you the choice to stay because that’s exactly where you want and need to be at that moment in time.

They discredit your dreams and abilities.

If you find your ‘friend’ is consistently trying to define your dreams and how you live your life for you, then you’re enabling them to hold you back from reaching for what you truly desire.  This could be in your career, living situation, love life, or any number of things.

A truly supportive friend will be there right beside you as you work towards your dreams, and will be willing to give honest, open, and constructive criticism where necessary.  Ultimately only you can achieve your dreams and need to work hard to reach them.  And a true friend will be cheering you on all the way home, not trying to get you to live a lie.

They have lied to you more than once.

gossipHow many times will you let someone lie to you before you realise their chronic behaviour is completely disrespectful of you and your relationship.  And the longer you allow them to lie to you and give them repeated chances to be trusted, the longer you’re lying to yourself about your friendship.

Honesty is the key to a healthy and loving relationship, be it between friends, family or lovers.  And if someone isn’t being honest to you, then they’re not worth being in your life.

Their negativity is rubbing off on you.

Everyone has a few people in their lives who are constantly negative about live and the world around them.  Everything going on in their lives is negative and regardless of what they’re talking about, it’s a projection of their own inner issues.  It could be a lack of self-confidence, a feeling of entitlement or abandonment, or any number of issues they have at the moment.

That’s not to say you need to avoid people who are going through a rough patch because you don’t want their negative attitude to rub off on you.  Those people need your support and love, and sometimes even a good kick in the ass to move forward.

A truly negative person is trying to drag you down to their level and make you feel sorry for them.  They’re attention-whores, so try to surround yourself with positive people and support those who truly need it.

They are excessively envious of what you have.

It’s okay to be a little bit envious of those around you, but when someone is excessively and consistently envious, then it’s a good chance they’re just trying to take what you already have.

In the end, someone who is regularly envious of those around them actually don’t like themselves, and sometimes could just need a bit of love and support.  But no amount of love can help them mend the broken pieces they carry around with them, only they can do that.

They motivate you to be judgemental or hateful.

Judgemental people will always miss out on meeting quality people because they can’t move past the outward reflection of what they think a person is like.  Those who will only hang out with people of a certain faith, race, size, shape, or sexuality and are hateful to those same people, are basically judgemental hypocrites.

Anyone who starts a sentence with ‘I’m not prejudiced but…’ is looking for an opening to be just that, prejudiced against whomever they’re targeting at that time.

Sometimes it’s hard to filter these people out, as the subtlety that they’ll be judgemental can be missed.  Especially when it’s masked as idle gossip.

They want you to be someone else.

Never ever let anyone try to change you from who you are into who they think you are or want you to be.  It’s your life, live it as you, not some fake version of yourself that someone else has put upon you.

The best thing to do is to surround yourself with those who love and respect you for you, not who they think you should be.  It’s better to lose someone in your life who doesn’t truly care about you as a person and replace them with someone worthy of your time, than it is to piece together who you used to be.

bad-friends-pic-3Inspiration for this post came from 9 Warning Signs You’re in Bad Company over on Marc and Angel Hack Life.