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239. Dating on a website

Decidedly it is not for me. I'm not the type to fit into the scheme. Not that I don't like the fact that you court through a computer screen. It isn't the media that bothers me. No. It's just the scheme that you have to fit into I can't cope with.

Recently I have tried one American dating site new to me, called OK-something or other. Very friendly. The first approach is very positive, no hassle, no harrassing. A little at a time, if you care for it, you can reply to their hundreds of questions. Your "profile" gets shaped as you fill the questions in. For example: do you consider astrology to be a legitimate science? How important is art in your daily life? Are geeks sexy? Is it possible to love someone you don't even like? Do you believe in an after-life? If you got married would you change your name? Is it generally acceptable to you for a sex partner to initiate foreplay while you are sleeping?

Well, my profile came up as follows: 
indie, sloppy, old-fashioned, conservative, into exercise, optimistic, playful, scientific, wholesome, good natured.
trusting, kinky, rational, giving, love-driven.

Would you date somebody like that? I certainly would not!

But never mind, my photo attracted some potential partners. With one of them it went like this (in French):

- Pardonnez moi pour cette intrusion sur votre pétillant profil que je viens de survoler. Je sais que nous ne nous connaissons pas et que nous n'avons même pas d'amis en commun mais moi je voudrais vous dire que j'aimerais faire votre connaissance et c'est sans vouloir vous importuner que je viens y déposer une petite trace de mon passage.
Peut-être que ces quelques mots ne resterons pas sans réponse, à bientôt! Moi c'est Fred :-)

- ah bon alors vous aimez l'aïoli dans l'Iowa, j'avoue que je n'ai pas encore essayé. Bonjour, moi c'est Bertha, type mafalda qui n'aime pas se faire marcher sur les pieds mais qui n'a pas d'autorité naturelle. J'ai bien bourlingué et j'adore les enfants. Je suis grand-mère de 2 loustics métis. Voilà pour moi! un homme d'affaires, quelles z'affaires? PS je suis bien plus vieille que vous, ça ne marchera pas!

- Pourquoi pensez-vous que ça ne marchera pas, on peut se donner juste une chance et voir où cela nous mènera.

- Vous voulez vraiment avoir l'air de sortir avec votre grand-mère??? je suis sur FaceBook à Bertha Duchenoque.

- Ma devise à moi l'âge la distance la couleur etc n'ont pas d'importance, pour moi l'important c'est la sérénité du coeur et la fidélité ainsi que la confiance dans un premier début de contact avec toi. J'espère qu'on peut se tutoyer!
Mon Facebook c'est Fred Nurke tu  peux peut-être m'envoyer une invitation. Je ne me connectes pas comme ça mais pour toi je vais me connecter si tu veux bien faire ample connaissance avec moi. Je vous ai envoyer l'invitation sur Facebook.

- pour faire plus ample connaissance et si tu ne te connectes pas souvent, on peut correspondre par email:

- Ah OK c'est encore plus pratique. Je t'enverrai un mail à cette adresse de suite, mais j'ai déjà envoyé l'invitation sur Facebook tu pourrais ajouter aussi ça ferait un plus. Alors discutons par mail je vous écrit de suite.

- l'ennui pour FB juste là maintenant, c'est que je crois l'avoir bazardé par erreur car le FB de ma petite fille avait un problème de hacking etc bla bla bla. On va voir!

- OK mais je viens de t'envoyer un mail à ton adresse Bertha. Vous tardez à me répondre par courrier ou vous êtes occupée?
- Non ça y est je l'ai fait
- mais je ne vois toujours rien dans ma boite de réception.

La suite sur email dans le désordre:

- en fait je suis très déçu car je me dis que tu te fies plus aux apparences et ce que les gens disent, apprends plutôt à t'écouter toi même, moi je veux bien te connaitre et entretenir une relation avec toi mais je ne comprends vraiment plus.

- je n'ai pas trop envie de continuer, pour tout dire. J'ai un blog en anglais si ça vous intéresse: blablabla. blogspot. Je ne veux vraiment pas sortir avec quelqu'un de bien plus jeune que moi.

- Vous êtes mariée? des enfants?

- OK je suis rassuré Bertha. Comment s'est déroulée votre journée aujourd'hui?

- oui oui, c'est moi

- Coucou Bertha, c'est Fred du site OKdrag, je vous écrit ici pour me rassuré que c'est bien à vous que je viens de parler sur le site.

- voilà, ça y est, le pot de colle. Merci de me lâcher les baskets. Je veux bien discuter de choses et d'autres, mais PAS DEVENIR TA DULCINEE.

- Alors c'est comme ça que tu voie les choses? Tu trouves que je suis un pot de colle? Moi? Passe une bonne soirée et bonne chance dans ta recherche, sache t'adresser aux gens au moins c'est le minimum des choses, car je vois que le respect que j'ai eu pour toi n'a pas été réciproque.


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How does one identify predators on this kind of websites? 

Here, in a few lines and within minutes, I had someone starting with a compliment: "bubbly profile". After I stated that I did not wish to be the grandmother of my lover, the prospective partner stated that age and color did not matter. What really mattered was: "serenity of the heart, faithfulness, and trust in the first contact". After I suggested he could be (I meant "just") a FaceBook friend, he asked I sent him an invitation and added that although he doesn't use FB much, he would do it for me. He quickly then confirmed that HE sent me the invitation to his FB. He seemed in a rush. At that stage I started feeling like a fish a fisherman has just hooked up and is getting nervous at the idea of losing. 

In between I had suggested that since he was not using FB much he could email me and I gave my email address. At this point, the exchange turned very negativelly for me. He wrote within minutes: "I have sent you an email, you are slow in answering, or are you busy?" In order to get out of this uncomfortable exchange I clearly stated that I did not want to persue. I wrote that I did not wish to go on with the exchange but that he could read my blog and I gave the blog's url, adding again that I did not wish to date anyone who could be my grandson. Since he did not seem to understand, I clearly wrote in capital letters that I did not want to be his sweetheart. Explosion of anger: he was disappointed, accused me of only trusting appearances, and listening to what people said, saying in the imperative: "learn how to listen to yourself". He did not understand anymore, he said. By then I lost my temper and wrote in colloquial language to stop being a glue pot, to let go of my shoe laces (French expression!). Finally he gave me a lesson: "know to address yourself to people, at least, it's a minimum, I see the respect I had for you is not shared".

Of course this rendition of my exchange with this fellow is told by me. It could be bias of course. His rendition would certainly be different. I quickly copied the text of the messages exchanged on the website. It was harder to copy the text of the emails as I had deleted them in anger and fear. Yes, fear. I experienced having a relationship once in the 1990s with a narcissist pervert, someone with NPD disorder. I felt the need to run away as fast as I could. Here's a 15 minutes video on how it runs in a couple when one is a pervert. Do take the time to see it to the end.

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