If we haven't already found love, most of us are looking for love. Some of us look for love in all the wrong places, as the cliche goes. Some of us are looking for love in what we're told are the right places, but with no luck. Then there are those of us who are looking for love online and have reached a point where we're thinking of meeting in real life with the person we're chatting to on the other end of the line.
The online world is not necessarily the wrong place to find love and neither is it technically the right place! After all, love is love, and many people have found their life partners or soulmates over the internet. Some have found love on dating apps, others have found the one after they cheekily slid into their DMs. Online dating is difficult, we know. First, it can get outright frustrating when you're having a deep conversation and can't look directly into the other person's eyes and read all their social cues.
Online dating has its perks and it also has its pitfalls. When dating, whether online or strictly in real life, you're putting yourself in a vulnerable position - emotionally and physically. Save yourself from the pitfalls of the online dating phenomenon, especially when you're deciding to meet in real life with the other person in the near future. Take a look at these 5 reasons why you should do research on your online date before you actually meet.
1. Pick Up on Red Flags
If someone's not the right one for you, there are usually a whole lot of warning signs that come up while you're communicating with them. These warning signs, or red flags, could be really obvious and you'll pick up on them immediately, stopping yourself from getting yourself into a situation that you don't want to be in. On the other hand, many red flags are a lot more subtle and could go unnoticed, especially if you're smitten by your potential date.
We've all got deal breakers for potential relationships, and it's better to find out about these sooner, rather than later. Looking out for red flags should give you an indication of problems that could arise in a relationship. Doing your research before you meet in real life can help you avoid these issues. It's not uncommon for married people to be using dating apps and not even tell you! Do your research before you decide to actually meet and save yourself the disappointment and from getting involved in a domestic scandal!
Check out the person's social media profiles. You'd usually be able to find posts that are visible, even if you haven't added them as a friend. Some Instagram profiles are open, while many Facebook posts are automatically set to public on an individual's profile. Look out for any red flags on their social media profiles. Do they have kids that they haven't yet told you about? Do they seem to already be in a relationship?
2. Are They Law Abiding Citizens?
Look, we're not saying that you've got to look for whether they've illegally downloaded an mp3 ten years ago, or if they have any unpaid parking tickets. For many of us, however, we wouldn't want to be involved with someone who's a serious criminal and could put our lives in danger or get our lives twisted in their nefarious activities. Some of us are into that sort of thing, but we're not here to judge.
It's a nightmare for many of us where we'd fall for someone and take our online dating relationship to the next level, meet in real life, and find ourselves face to face with a sex offender or murderer. They might have charmed you off your feet, but you would have had no clue if you haven't done your research before you met them in real life. The best way for you to find out if they've got a criminal record (if they haven't told you) is to search their name in Nuwber. You'll be able to retrieve any publicly-available information on your online date to make sure that they're definitely the kind of person that you want to go on a real life date with.
3. You Don't Want to Be the Victim of a Catfish
When someone isn't honest with you about who they are online and pretends to be someone else, that's catfishing. This can take many forms and can have almost no consequences to having disastrous consequences. Many catfish attempts try to make you believe that they're someone they're not, get you to trust them, and try to swindle money out of you.
It's fairly easy to make sure if the person you're talking to really is the person in their photo. Look them up on other social media platforms and make sure that their photos match the one on their dating app profile. Better yet, have a video call before you actually meet them!
4. Learn About Their Views
Sometimes, the person you fall for could end up having political, religious, or cultural views which just don't work with you and your lifestyle. For some of us, this might not matter, but for others, it does. Do a bit of digging on their social media profiles, particularly their tweets and Facebook posts to get an idea of their views on important matters.
5. Be More Comfortable
Everyone does research on their online date before they meet. We even do a bit of research on new friends! Once you've done your research and find that there's nothing to be too concerned about, you'll meet your date with butterflies instead of anxiety. On the other hand, always maintain a healthy level of awareness, just in case!