Allison was a new client who called about getting some advice on relationship issues and about dating. She told me she had been married and divorced three times, so it was obvious to me she must know how to date but needing some help regarding her relationships might be another issue. We set up an appointment to meet on Friday morning of this week. She seemed frantic about getting in and I could tell this was a woman who got what she wanted if she put her mind to it.
On Friday morning, I hear a car pull up in the driveway and see a largely built, attractive black American woman get out of her car talking on her cell phone. I assumed this was Allison as this was her scheduled appointment time. She was angry at someone on the other end of the phone as I could hear her yelling at them from inside my office. When she finally arrives at the door she apologizes for being late and it's obvious that she is still steaming mad.
I asked Allison how she finds the men that she dates as well as the ones she ends up marrying. Like many singles today, she uses the internet and dating sites. I assured her this was a great way to start back into dating but most often it helps you to find what you don’t want in a partner. My experiences with online dating taught me that many of the profiles on these sites are Phoney and people are not authentic. You have to know how to discern who is telling the truth and who is being fake. Then Allison asked me to look at a copy of her profile to make some suggestions;
I directed Allison to my office to sit down and relax and catch her breath. We had some tea and baked goodies while I looked over her intake paperwork, then moved onto the rough stuff, asking the harder questions about why she thought her previous relationships didn’t work out. According to Allison, it was mostly “their fault.”
I asked Allison how she finds the men that she dates as well as the ones she ends up marrying. Like many singles today, she uses the internet and dating sites. I assured her this was a great way to start back into dating but most often it helps you to find what you don’t want in a partner. My experiences with online dating taught me that many of the profiles on these sites are phoney and people are not authentic. You have to know how to discern who is telling the truth and who is being fake. Then Allison asked me to look at a copy of her profile to make some suggestions;
“Single Mother, age 45, Tall voluptuous loving caring, kind woman, who likes to please her man. I have 3 bi-racial boys who love fishing, camping and outdoor activities. I’ve been married before to an abusive man so if you are abusive, don’t bother to respond. I enjoy fishing, camping, hunting, boating, going to the gym and watching sports. If you are looking for a sexy woman who likes to have some fun, then I’m your girl.”
I scratched my head and had to ask her, “exactly what kind of person do you hope to find with this profile?”
“My boys need a Dad who will do stuff with them and provide a stable home. They each have a loser Dad who won’t even pay child support. The burden is on me to work and put a roof over their heads. I have to do everything myself and I don’t get any help.”
I asked Allison if what she wrote was true. Did she really like to fish and go to the gym?
It turns out that Allison hates sports of any kind, her boys have never been fishing or camping in their lives and what exactly does "pleasing your man mean?" Are we talking about sex or buying him gifts or cooking him dinner?
To me, this profile is about a very vulnerable woman who can easily be taken advantage of. So to answer your question, are you wearing a sign, YES! And, you are selling yourself short by lying and not being honest about what you want. Looks to me like you are offering him a good time with no mention of wanting a long term relationship. Can you see why you might be attracting the wrong man into your life?
Allison replied in defense, “No man is going to want to be an instant father, help pay my bills and go to church with me on Sunday? All of them just want me for sex and a free meal ticket, oh and be my friend.”
But, that is what you are asking for in this profile. There is nothing in this profile that mentions your faith or going church. This ad is as Phoney as the ones you say you are reading. You are telling the person on the other end what “You Think,” they want to hear, only to end up disappointed when they turn out to be Mr. Wrong. To be in a committed relationship, you both have to work at it. Even the good men are not going to be perfect because you are two different people with different quirks and annoyances. What makes them a good guy is the willingness to work on his shortcomings in order to make the relationship to work.
To get the better or best partner you have to ask the Right questions. You have to dig deeper to know the true person you are communicating with. There are many phonies and “catfish” scams out there because they are doing so well at deceiving all the lonely people in the world that want to be loved, understood, and without judgement. The cat-fishers will tell you whatever you want to hear unless you ask the right questions. You have to catch them in their lies, then throw them back in the water. You keep fishing until you find one you like.
After discussing some of these things with Allison, she realized she was going about things in the wrong direction. To find the Right person for you, You have to know what it is you want and why you want it. Consider asking some open ended questions that you and your responder need to give some thought to, instead of blurting out what you think they want to hear. Avoid questions that require a Yes or No answer. Try some of these questions instead and see what results you get;
Tell me what it was like growing up in your family.
Do you get along with your parents? Siblings?
Do you have children or want children someday?
Do you consider yourself a more spiritual person or a religious person? Why or why not?
Ask their opinion on something going on in your life. (Example; My son wants to learn how to fish, do you know anything about that? Is there somewhere I can take him that would teach him?).
Where would you like to travel if money wasn’t an issue? Why?
What subject did you like the best in School or college? Why?
What are some of the things people do for you that make you feel appreciated and loved?
Are you a morning person or a night owl?
What is it about your job that you like, dislike?
What is your favorite color? Why?
Where would you like to live in the future and what kind of living establishment do you prefer?
Where do you see yourself in five years?
What are your goals for the future
What would the “perfect partner” look like for you?.
Make sure you ask “Why” they chose their answers to get a better understanding of them and their belief system. You can tell a lot more about a person by asking genuine questions about them than what’s going on in the world or how much money he makes. It shows you are interested in them as a person rather than a paycheck.