Until recently, I considered eDating to be a strangely solitary activity. I never wanted to try it because I envisioned millions of people alone on a Friday night, in pajamas, faces lit by the dim glow of the monitor, furiously typing to strangers who could be nothing other than soul mates. Thankfully, the experience has been quite different for me – I started eDating with two of my girlfriends and having a support group through the whole ordeal has definitely been helpful!
When first setting up our profiles, one of my afore-mentioned friends (who, upon her request, shall henceforth be referred to in my blog as “Sassy Pants”) came over to my house where we enjoyed food, wine, and a little activity we like to call “eHarmonizing”. EHarmonizing consists of reviewing each others photos and profiles and helping one another to portray ourselves in a way that is both positive and accurate.
The next order of business in the eHarmonizing process is rejection. Yep, that’s right: REJECTION. In eDating, and on eHarmony specifically, there are ways to reject and be rejected at every phase of communication – even pre-communication! Though it seems pretty harsh, we soon discovered that the best way to get rid of the guys we didn’t want to talk to was to close out the match before they had an opportunity to communicate. End it before it begins!!! These are some of the criteria for closing out a match:
- Too short
- Too fat
- Too bald
- Too boring
- Too cheesy
- Too sensitive
- Too damaged
- Too many spelling errors
- Not enough information in the profile
- Too much information in the profile
- (I also tend to close out anyone who doesn’t fill out the question about a book he enjoyed. I need a reader.)
Yes…we glean all this information and pass all these judgments just from a cursory glance at a profile. Sassy Pants and I often joke that if the boys knew what we say about them, they’d probably cry. That first evening of eHarmonizing was heavily punctuated with Sassy Pants shouting “No shorties!” and my exclamations of “No fatties!”
What a thrill I thought it was to be able to coldly dismiss men without remorse! It was literally like shopping for shoes! Then I learned what it was like to be closed out immediately. No problem when it was someone I wasn’t even interested in, but when a good-looking, successful, active, well-educated man closed me out for no apparent reason, I immediately felt indignant – and maybe even a little bit hurt. “But you don’t even know me!” I said to my monitor. Once my embarrassment for talking to my computer faded, I realized that it was true he didn’t know me – and I didn’t know him either. What the hell do I care what one stranger thinks of my profile? Not a bit. Bring on the next! That’s a great thing about this whole process – there’s always a “next”. For every good-looking, successful, active, well-educated man who doesn’t like my profile, there are another two who do like it.