Dear Thelma: Failed to find love through online dating


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Dear Thelma,

I am 31 years old, have an amazing job and a decent appearance and manners, but I am struggling to find a partner through online dating. Over the past year, I have been able to land dates with women over 20 times. But all dates have a common pattern – they usually start out well but end on the second or third date. In a post-mortem discussion with women who have rejected me, they often say the same thing: “You are an amazing person, but I just don’t feel the spark with you. “

I am too tired to go out and try again because I am tired of hurting myself repeatedly. I have realized that my approach of really trying to put effort and plans with a woman or even making calls and texts is seen as ‘coming too loud’ and that frustrates me as well. I even minimized my texts, my calls and my efforts but to no avail as it subsequently prevents me from establishing an emotional connection with someone.

So should I just give up looking for love or a partner? I have used many self-help books to refine my approach with women. I had some success with it but along the way I realized that I had lost a lot of me throughout the trip as it requires a lot of personality changes and frankly it is. really exhausting to pretend to be someone i’m not.

I’m not trying to victimize myself, but having dated over 20 women and ended up being rejected after a few weeks or months, what could possibly not happen with me? I have become so used to rejection that I am oblivious to the outcome of dating and no longer even look forward to dates.

So Thelma, please give me a suggestion to avoid this vicious cycle of repetition as I want to find love and build a relationship with someone.


Dear AX,

So you are not alone with this problem! Although your description is classic, I suggest that the first step is to examine your perception.

You’ve been on dates with 20 or so potential partners you’ve met online, and none of them have turned into a relationship.

You see it as being scratched 20 times. I suggest this is due to how online dating works.

With online dating, you read profiles, connect online, text a bit, then plan, dress, travel and finally meet. It’s a lot of time and effort, so when it doesn’t get anywhere you feel disappointed.

Compare that to meeting women at a party. There you would talk for a few minutes and only ask for a date if you felt a spark. You would probably only ask for two or three, but it would be less effort and you would have a better chance of getting a match.

While online dating can be helpful, it takes a lot of extra work compared to meeting people in real life.

An additional problem with online dating first is that many people have created an online persona that shows their ideal personality. Some have a completely different online persona than their real selves. Therefore, you will have a lot of people who sound great on the chat but just won’t do it for you when you meet.

Should you avoid online dating? No, it’s useful. But I think we need to polish it up a bit.

But first, my best advice is this: you have 20 women with direct dating experience. Ask them to put you in touch with single women they think you would get along with.

Also talk to your cousins, siblings, aunts, uncles, coworkers, classmates and anyone you can think of. People who know you are much more likely to find you suitable partners than an algorithm.

And join activities and clubs where you can meet many people in a relaxed setting. Try hiking groups, running clubs, and dance classes. If you drink, go to pubs and clubs when they reopen. If you are religious, see what social activities your organization offers.

Now about to tweak those algorithms. Twenty women have met you, so your conversation is clearly excellent. You are also sensitive, empathetic, and eager to learn, as you have adapted your texting style. Congratulations to you!

I agree that being someone you’re not is exhausting. It doesn’t make sense either; eventually, they will see the real you. So don’t try to change. Authentic is always great.

But make sure you get the most out of your profile and online experience.

First, be on the right platform. There’s no point in being on a hookup app when looking for a match. Delete your profile on apps that don’t match your goal. Then throw away those apps.

Second, we tend to think of ourselves as buyers, so our profile is often dedicated to what we’re looking for. However, your profile is really a sales page; you are the product.

About 75% of your profile page should explain who you are. Only the last 25% should be relevant to your target audience. Everything must be personal and positive; don’t try to play mind games.

“I am a huge fan of Marvel. When I’m not at the movies to catch a new release, I relax with my cat Nelson and watch Small city reruns. Since the pandemic hit I have started jogging and am a reasonable cook. I am 31 years old and although I loved dating someone in their 20s, I am now actively looking for a long term relationship.

It should include a close-up photo of your face, an action shot that matches your hobby, and a full-length portrait so people know exactly what to expect.

Third, be ruthless in investing your time. Swipe left on women who tell you they’re not actively looking for something serious.

This last point can hurt because we tend to think that the more people we date, the more likely we are to meet The One. However, you have a solid goal and there’s no point spending time with women who don’t share it.

Finally, we open again, so people will want to socialize. Take advantage of the joy of being free again and meet lots of people.

Remember, you are thoughtful, outgoing, and goal-oriented, and there are a lot of great women out there looking for a partner. So good luck, and I hope you meet someone in the next few months.


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