With the holiday season approaching, this issue is the penultimate issue of this first semester. But the holidays bring more than just last issues and finals week; some people are becoming closer in their relationships with friends, family and maybe a significant other. Those without a significant other may be dating more, trying to find Mister or Miss Right. At Dominican, the stark contrast between the number of women and the number of men on campus makes it more challenging for women to find a man with similar interests. Several are probably turning to an alternative, newer method of finding a compatible person: online dating.
For those of you who are unfamiliar with this trend, online dating often begins on one of a large variety of web sites that ask each user to create a profile: typically complete with a photo, interests, short biography and demographical information of the user. The profile should be an accurate, but not precise, description of the user to facilitate a better match and a safer experience. And don’t spend hours upon end trying to shoot the perfect photo; it’s much better to go with a photo a friend has taken of you having fun because it will be a lot more genuine and interesting. Some of the sites charge people who wish to use the site, but others are free. There are many websites that are intended for people with particular affiliations or hobbies, such as catholicmatch.com or blackpeoplemeet.com.
After creating a profile and posting it on the website, the user can begin to contact other users through instant messaging or sending them a private message. He or she can usually find someone with some potential. After corresponding with the person for at least a few days, he or she should bring some reality to the situation. Before meeting however, it is best to talk on the phone and get to know the person better in that way because it eases the process and provides a little more of an obstacle the stranger needs to get through just in case they’re not who they say they are.
Eventually, they should meet in person. It’s recommended that they meet sometime between a week and a month after first contacting each other, because that gives them enough time to get to know each other better first, but is soon enough that the other user needs to be honest in case they are a scam artist. Meeting in public is essential for safety precautions. The first several times you meet someone off the Internet, you really need to stay in public areas in case the other person has bad intentions. As you grow into a relationship with the person however, it becomes harder for him or her to act like someone he or she is not, just like with someone whom you did not meet on the Internet.
Online dating is more risky, but it sometimes makes the process of finding someone interesting a lot easier, and when people take proper safety precautions, it can be rather enjoyable. But don’t worry if you don’t have a significant other during the holiday season; enjoying the holidays with friends and family and being of high spirits is more important than being with Mister or Miss Right this season.
– Mary Stroka, Editor-in-chief