By David Esteppe
February 14 is a day devoted to romance. According to history.com, the oldest known Valentine still in existence is a poem written in 1415 by Charles, Duke of Orleans, to his wife while he was being held prisoner in the Tower of London. Today. Charles not only might have used the internet to send that Valentine message, he and his wife may have even used the internet to meet, date and fall in love.
Online dating has rapidly come a long way. The use of the internet for so many things business and personal alike has paved the way for using the internet for finding romance.
There is an online dating site or smart device application for every genre of romantic search. Are we looking for sex, companionship or something as serious as marriage? According to Pew research studies about online dating, people are looking for all of these things to different degrees, and we are looking for them usually with like-minded people. Hence, online dating offers the ability to access more dating groups than would fit into this article. Some interesting highlights for this writer were Meet-an-Inmate.com, ChristianMingle.com, WhereWhitePeopleMeet.com and AshelyMadison.com. The last one is for people who one would think had finished the dating process, as it is for married people to find people to date. It is a cheating website. The site boasts 35 million users.
Greenbrier County residents have had some interesting things to share about online dating.
Lewisburg resident and businesswoman Mary Lou Buttons has been in a wonderful friendship-relationship for several years now with a man she met on Match.com. Buttons says, “First impressions matter in face to face real life meetings, and they matter just as much with online dating. Would you wear a weathered sweatshirt and dirty jeans to a first date? If not, then why would you put a profile picture of yourself dressed like that online?” Buttons said she doesn’t have any nightmare stories about online dating. She found that some dates simply weren’t a match and moved on until meeting a keeper. She offers the advice to make sure your profile is tight. Use proper grammar and be honest and truthful about who you are and what you are looking for in a person you would like to go on a date with.
Renick resident Bradley Pitt took a shot at the dating scene using the GPS driven smart device application (App) Grindr to find a date within a reasonable driving distance, and scored a delightful movie date. Plans were made for a second date the next day to go hiking. Pitt’s date was a no-show, no-call. Puzzled by the seemingly change of heart from the guy, Pitt chalked it up to a lack of sincerity and put it out of his mind. Three months later, he read in the newspaper that the date had been arrested quite early in the a.m. the next day after the date and subsequently sentenced to prison for a non-violent offense. Pitt jokingly says he had the guy arrested for standing him up.
Local medical student Davidson Harley has been on a few decent dates using OKCupid, but says nothing has ever panned out. “There is a ‘buffet effect’ to using the site. Even with good dates, you and your dates are seduced by the endless selection of online matches. Part of you is always thinking there is someone more attractive or compatible on the site,” says Harley. Harley is actually awaited date number three with a hottie she met the old-fashioned way. A mutual friend set them up.
Wilma and Fred Esty of Renick met through one of the original online dating sources geared towards people looking for marriage. E-Harmony brought the two together and they have been married for many years now. The couple has only good things to say about the process of meeting a life partner through online sources. They were both new to that scene and followed not only their instincts but the guidance of the sites algorithms that suggested they would find each other attractive and compatible.
With Valentine’s Day approaching, and love on the mind, online dating is a part of our reality now. If it is for you, find a site with your own parameters, and be sure to follow all of the safety precautions outline clearly on each site. Good luck lovers!
P.S. The stories are real and aliases were used to tell them.