Just like in life, when you date online you’ll meet all kinds of men, with all kinds of communication styles…
Communication Style 1: The Penpal
This guy doesn’t seem to be in any hurry to meet you, but he’s clearly enjoying your email relationship. He writes to you at length, back and forth, for so long that you begin to feel frustrated: You’re a busy person. You don’t have time for an intense new email relationship with a stranger. When you get home after a long day, the last thing you want to do is to spend time composing yet another email to your new pen pal. But there he is in your inbox- How was your day? Did you go anywhere nice for dinner? What plans do you have for the weekend?
Your new penpal could be juggling other women and wanting to bide his time before meeting up so he can see where his other dates might be leading. Or maybe he’s reluctant to commit to a date until he knows a little more about you. If you like this guy, and his emails seem to indicate someone who could be promising in person, just cut the emails off and suggest an in person meeting. You have absolutely nothing to lose: The steady chain of emails without a face to face context can drain you of your enthusiasm for him, and before long, you may lose interest altogether (or meet someone else really great before you’ve had just one date with this guy).
Communication Style 2: The Intense Guy
His emails are persistent. He’s totally gung-ho – meanwhile you haven’t even written back to his first message. Hi beautiful, I hope you’re having a wonderful day. I’d love it if you’d write back. Okay, it’s now been 3 days and I haven’t heard from you, but I don’t want to give up. Give me a chance?
This guy might have a tendency towards blurred boundaries in relationships. Or he might be not so adept at social maneuvering. If you choose to respond, do so with caution. This guy is already overstepping your boundaries and you haven’t even met him yet. Doesn’t he have anything better to do with his time? If you write to him at all, do so in a guarded, tentative manner and don’t reveal too much too soon – he needs some firm “we’re strangers, actually” boundaries.
Style 3: The Straight Shooter
This guy cuts through all the niceties and gets right to the point, asking you out before you’ve even written back to him once. Hi! How about you join me for dinner tonight? A little warm up banter is always welcome - breaking the ice helps you to feel comfortable.
If you like his profile but don’t feel comfortable jumping in so soon, slow the pace a little by finding out more about him, by asking him some questions. “Thanks for the invite! You seem great, but maybe we could chat online a little first?” is a good opening line. This kind of opener will establish if he is prepared to slow down and take the time to get to know you a little bit, on your own terms.
Style 4: The Gem
Every so often, the best kind of guy pops up in your inbox. His emails are polite, respectful and boundaried - just the right amount of correspondence before asking you out. With the gem, usually you’ll feel some email chemistry even before you meet face to face, maybe even a lot of it. This is likely because you have found someone who, maybe, just maybe, could be a potential match – there’s an easy rapport and writing to each other feels good. You’re excited about the first date.
The gem is the very reason that you’re dating online in the first place – he’s a genuine guy, and he’s probably looking for exactly what you’re looking for – a match. The other men provided some comedy value along the way and gave you that all-important perspective – but when you meet the gem, you’ll know.
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