Agreed—as a curvy girl, I want to avoid first-date surprises. I haven’t worn a Halloween costume since I went as a pack of grape Hubba Bubba in sixth grade.If they're older/paunchier/have more neck bolts than he does in the photos, choose compassion, says New York dating coach Connell Barrett.After a lengthy back-and-forth with a cute guy who asks why I’m still single (beats me! We have a short phone call, as Hoffman recommends, to set something up. That’s online dating: You meet the freakazoids and think, Ghosting happens to the best of us, says therapist and dating coach Melanie Hersch.
One reason I’ve been passive about online dating: Most of the guys have been a little conservative for my taste.
(When you’re a black woman in your 40s, why do all your matches look like George Jefferson?
) Hoffman says the algorithm, like a boyfriend, can’t read my mind; I need to message and “like” guys I find appealing if I want to start seeing similar people in my results.
I want you to be on the site at least three hours a week.” Uh-oh. Kindly, Hoffman refrains from mocking my unassisted self-description: “I’m a loving person who likes trying new restaurants and a sweet treat before bed.” (I never realized how dirty that sounds.) She asks about my hobbies, how my coworkers would fill in the “most likely to” blank. And if they occasionally get a positive response, they may figure it can't hurt to try again.
She then revises my profile, noting that I love cooking vegetables I grow in my garden, that Dave Chappelle has my kind of humor, that “meeting new people excites me: I could spend half an hour talking to the cashiers at Trader Joe’s.” Three-quarters of the profile should be about me, and the other quarter about what I want in a mate, says Hoffman, who tells me to be specific here, too: The goal isn’t to attract everyone, it’s to find The One. "In psychology research, we call this a 'variable reinforcement schedule,'" Lehmiller says.