When Kyle and Kate Jackson were on the dating scene, they didn’t want to meet people in bars or by chance. Since both of them were shy, they knew that even if they met someone they wouldn’t have the guts to ask the person out.
“I used to make fun of people who went online to find a date,” says Kate. “Once I got to the point that regular dating wasn’t successful, I decided to give it a try. For me, it made the whole process so much easier.”
A study published in 2013 by the University of Chicago indicated that 33 percent of couples who married met online. And, a Pew Research study in 2013 revealed that 59 percent of Americans believe that online dating is a good way to meet people.
When Kate and Kyle met online, they initially communicated by email. After sending emails back and forth, Kyle asked for permission to call Kate. They talked by phone for several weeks and when both felt comfortable, they decided to meet in person.
“I went to her house where her roommates were present and then we went out on our date,” says Kyle. “We made sure everyone knew where we were.”
Kate and Kyle met on Valentine’s Day 2008 and dated for a year before getting engaged on Valentine’s Day 2009. They wonder if their paths would have ever crossed without the online dating site.
If you are considering dating online, keeping yourself safe is a concern. These tips from Online Dating Magazine can help you safely navigate the world of online dating:
Arrange to meet in a public place - Never allow your date to pick you up from your home, and do not give out your home address. Consider going out with a group or on a double date when you first meet.
Go Dutch – This way you won't feel any obligation to "return" the favor.
Realize that alcohol affects your judgment - Not only does it affect your judgment, but alcohol also lessens your inhibitions. Try to avoid alcohol on your first date.
Use your own mode of transportation – If you find yourself in an uncomfortable situation, you won’t have to rely on your date to get you home.
Don't assume that your date is safe - Never let your guard down on a first date.
Avoid secluded areas - Stay in a public place for your first date and avoid secluded areas such as parks.
Listen to your gut - If something doesn't feel right, it probably isn't, so leave immediately.
Always let someone know where you're going - You might even consider arranging a time to call and check in.
Give your cell phone number - It's safer to give out a cell phone number instead of your landline (if you still have one).
Always remain alert - Even if you’re having a blast and the chemistry is great, it’s a good idea to remain alert the whole evening. Make sure you have a cell phone on you.
No matter how you meet, taking your time can help you make wiser choices when it comes to choosing a mate.