Every now and again I dabble in the online dating pool. Mostly for something to do or because I haven't found anyone in my day to day life to play with. I find it easier to check people out when you meet them online. I can tell a lot about someone just by their screen name and information that they give me. Facebook, Myspace, Twitter, Linkedin, and many other sites make that easy to do. Even Zillow has given me information that I probably shouldn't have. Many times these sites have saved me from a dating disaster though.
But what happens when you meet someone in real life and you want to look them up?
Is it out of the norm to look them up online? Half of my friends say that I shouldn't and the other half say HELL YEAH! By the way, the Hell Yeah peeps are my single mates who are finding the same types of guys. I've actually learned a lot about someone just by doing a little research. Once I found out that the guy I was dating was in a porn. I was excited at first... thinking this might be the jackpot online research find. Until I learned more about the porn and it turned out that it wasn't one of the good ones. We're talking weird and unusual and like a vagina after childbirth, there's just no coming back from that.
Then there was the time that I dated a guy who as it turns out was considered a sexual offender on children. NO SHIT! I found that piece of information online after I checked him out after the first date. When confronted... for no other reason then I'm as curious as a cat with milk carton top, he said that he only possessed pictures of children and didn't actually act on anything. Yup that's right folks. Moving on.
I was lucky enough to find out about those two on the internet. The others I decided to just go with the flow like my love struck friends told me to do and that got me two ex's that became stalkers, one ex gave me a roofie at my own bbq, one asked if we could pretend to date while he "dated men", and then there's the foot fetish guy.
So I say YAY for the internet. Check out those creeps before you go out with them.
Honestly I do have some guidelines to looking up men online.
- First, never tell them that you've looked them up. It's like checking out the daily celebrity gossip... he doesn't want to hear it and he's not going to be listening to another word after you've told him. He's outta there.
- Second, what ever you learn can not be used as judgment if you still decide to go out with him. If you find out he has a girlfriend and he hasn't told you yet then I suggest trying to bring the subject up. If he lies, would you really want to date him anyway? If he tells the truth then he's off limits until he tells you differently. Right?
- Third, you can't go befriending him on facebook or twitter unless you bring it up in person. You don't just stumble on someone's facebook page. Scary chick alert!
- Fourth, if you know for a fact that you aren't interested in seeing him after what you've found out online don't tell him why. Just tell him that you aren't compatible or you'd be better as friends. You don't want him telling your circle of friends that you're a stalker or psycho bitch.
- Fifth, don't use what you find out against him or towards your relationship attempt (not directly at least). For instance if he's been arrested for something don't say "so have you been to jail lately?" Simply ask what's the worst thing he's ever done. If he bring something else up then you may have to worry about what you're getting into.
What are some of your dating traditions and have you ever checked up on someone before you went out with them or soon after the first date?