A few years ago I attended an event organized annually by A. Schwarzenegger’s wife – Maria Shriver. I distinctly remember how during one of her speeches, Shriver urged parents not to spoil their children by paying all their bills as long as possible, because, according to her, making your children too comfortable domesticates them and robs them of their drive and ability to survive and grow. It takes away both, their hunger and their ability to hunt for themselves. And, when the time comes to use their claws, they are not sharp enough to grab onto anything that’s worth having, because they haven’t been sharpened over the years as they should have been.
As I was listening to Shriver, I couldn’t help but draw a mental analogy to how antibiotics hurt us by weakening our immune system when they fight the infections that our body should be fighting and winning on its own. Indeed, this is yet another situation, in which if you don’t use it, you lose it.
Online dating has a similar affect on our ability to build exciting single and dating life for both men and women. While creating so many opportunities to meet so many people that you would have never met otherwise, the online dating world robs its users of the ability to meet people in real-life casual situations, and thus deprives them of the excitement that comes with approaching, starting conversations and flirting with people in cafes, bus stops, libraries and other public places.
Online dating is especially effective at robbing us of the opportunities to flirt in the real world because it attacks both sexes. The men are becoming far less aggressive. They no longer turn around and look at a hot girl when she walks by, and they no longer stare at someone they like to look at like they used to. Why bother? He would much rather open his laptop and send a message to 20 single women in an hour about how much he likes their profiles, and how much he agrees with what they have to say. However, the problems is that when a guy leans on the online dating crutch for too long, he becomes unable to walk without it – he becomes completely incapable of approaching and meeting women outside of online dating sites, even in situations when he should make a move and when it should be very easy for him to come up to a woman and talk to her – i.e. when she makes it clear that she is interested with her eye contact and body language.
Women, on the other hand, become far less outgoing and far less enthusiastic as a result of talking to guys on the internet. Why bother and make eye contact with the guys around and why look available and interested? After all, when she comes home, she is going to have 10 messages in her OkCupid inbox from 10 different guys, who want to talk to her and ask her out for dinner. She has no reason to hope to meet a guy the “Hollywood” way – at a grocery store or at a coffee shop . Therefore, she is completely dedicated to texting and wearing her headphones when she is out, eliminating any chance of having any kind of casual chat with the guys around her. She neither has interest in meeting guys when she is out and about, nor hope that a guy would approach her and would try to meet her, because, as noted above, the men became so passive.
Thus, it appears that there is no longer need for guys to be aggressive and for women to make themselves look interested and available. This takes the excitement and the rush of meeting someone new in person out of the picture, which is very sad news for the world of romance and spontaneity.
I wonder how quickly people would revert to their older ways, if the option of meeting people online was completely taken away from them for a few months. Would we see an increase in men’s assertiveness? Would women make more eye contact with the guys around them and will stop wearing sunglasses and headphones everywhere they go? Would women stop texting as much when they are out and would make an effort to flirt with the guys they meet because they won’t have that option on their computer?
Since online dating sites aren’t going anywhere any times soon, the only thing that single people can do to simulate that kind of situation is to deliberately limit their use of the online dating sites, so that they don’t forget that meeting someone new in the “real” world is so much more compelling and exciting. Limiting the use of online dating sites might just force you to take more action in person, and it will also remind you that meeting someone special at a grocery store, at a coffee shop, or at a bus is a fantasy that can come true, if you make yourself a little more available and assertive, and you don’t block the world around you when you are out.
By PracticalHappiness.com – Practical Dating and Relationship Advice