Whether you are new to online dating, or an ‘old hand’, even in a fresh and deepening relationship, then this article could be useful to you. What happens when you and your date both have Facebook pages, and your relationship is in that exciting phase when you just cannot stop phoning, texting and emailing each other? Or, maybe you are settled in to a stable relationship, maybe you’ve even started living together, and you both have Facebook pages of your own. Have you thought about the potential problems this could cause? Do you need two Facebook profiles – one for your regular friends and one for online dating? Maybe you need an online dating guide?
Having a profile on Facebook can lead to a multitude of problems, not least being identity theft, which is the reason why I kept away from the application for a few years. Yes, there are privacy settings, but they don’t always function as they should, and recently the management at the company changed the default settings on a whim. This led to a big outcry in the media. And Yes again, they did change them back. But it just makes you nervous about having your whole life in a worldwide database, doesn’t it? These days there is even software which can analyse your profile and your Facebook friends and figure out a whole lot about what makes you tick, even your sexual preferences.
Until recently, I had no page on Facebook. My girlfriend has had one for years, and she is a nut about her online identity privacy. She uses it mainly to keep in touch with her family.
So, I thought it would be a good idea for me too, as I’m not really good at keeping in touch with family, and I know my daughters are really active. Fine. So…
What bearing has this on online dating?
Well, I started to set up an online profile in Facebook, and after a few pages it asked me to find some friends online. You’ve probably done it already. Guess who I looked for? Yes, my girlfriend. Could I find her? No. Did I find her? Yes. I simply looked for one of her daughters and found her as a friend of her daughter. I then sent a request to my girlfriend to be my Facebook friend.
After a couple of days I had received no reply. This started me thinking. Is she ignoring me? Did she get my request? Several other family members (including my daughters, I’m glad to say) had accepted and become friends. Or was there another reason, something more insidious? So, I asked her if she was not responding. She said that she hadn’t received my request. Fair enough, I believed that she hadn’t received my request. She was surprised that I had been able to find her at all given her Facebook profile settings (that’s off the point of this article, though I did touch on it earlier).
This whole episode got me thinking. Maybe she had a whole list of people – exes maybe, who she did not want me to see as her friends. Anyway, it was not an issue for me, but I also disappointed myself, that I should doubt her.
This whole online profile issue can raise doubts and questions when it comes to online dating, especially when you are just meeting with someone you like. You exchange real email addresses first, then phone numbers, then maybe, just maybe, your Facebook pages.
There are couple of solutions. One is to have a bland profile with few friends, plus your real everyday profile. The other solution is to keep your profile clear of your dates and exes. Of course, if you are dating multiple people at the same time, or even using Facebook dating features, then you will have to be a lot more careful if you want to avoid lots of questions or doubts about trust.
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