Dating in cyber world: Warning signs you shouldn’t ignore

Starting a romantic relationship online doesn’t have to be scary, but it’s important to date safely and watch for the red flags that your new love interest might not be Mr. or Ms. Right after all.

Woman using computer on her bed

Meeting new people online really isn’t that hard. Joining a dating website, using social media, entering chat rooms and playing multi-player online games are some of the ways you can connect with others. On the flip side, that means they can also connect with you, and unfortunately not everyone is as they seem. But you can avoid heartache by paying attention to these warning signs.

Few, if any, photos

Check out his photos. Does he have any on his profile? Do they give you a clear picture of what he currently looks like? If not, ask him for some, or suggest using a webcam to chat. If he always makes an excuse and refuses, then he could be deceiving you. He could have many reasons for not wanting you to see his picture, but the point is that if he can’t be honest about what he looks like, what else might he be dishonest about?

Limits personal info

When you chat online, email, talk on the phone or text, are you the one sharing most of the personal information, such as your likes and dislikes? Does he ask a lot of questions and then mirror your answers with similar ones? Does he have a vague or general description of himself on his profile? If any of these sound familiar, he could be hiding something important or gathering information about you to establish common ground and lure you into feeling a false connection.

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Rushes into a cyber sex relationship

A man who pushes for an online sexual relationship raises a huge red flag. He might send you explicit photos and want to see yours, or he could regularly turn the conversation to sex. This type of online personality probably isn’t in it for the long haul, so move on and find someone who isn’t only interested in your bra size.

Gives you the sob stories

Money problems, health concerns, family issues, etc. Sure, we all have our problems, but do you feel more like a sounding board than a potential love interest? A person who continually talks about their problems might be trying to gain sympathy or be overly needy.

Makes excuses to not meet

If your online romance feels right, you will eventually want to meet and take it from there. But if he keeps making excuses and can’t meet or is a no-show to your date, then he’s probably Mr. Wrong. He might already be in a relationship or doesn’t want to take yours to another level.

Too good to be true

A person can be anything they want to be on the internet, so trust your instincts. If he appears too good to be true, then as the saying goes, he probably is.

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