Online Dating: Sometimes You Just Need a Break

(This is cross-posted at BlogHer.)

I’ve been a member of an online dating site since July 2008; I’ve never suspended or canceled the service since it was activated. It’s always there, ready for me to use if I feel like it, but my frequency of use has varied widely. There have been times where I met three new people in one week, and other times where I’ve met the same number of people in a month or more.

In an even more drastic change of pace, I’ve only met one new person through online dating in the past three months. I’ve seen that person about eight times, but getting together has been haphazard. In other words, I’m not dating him exclusively because I don’t want to see other people, I just haven’t met anyone else that I want to go out with.

I’ve decided not to see this person anymore, but right now logging into my online dating account doesn’t hold a lot of appeal either. When I log in, it feels like the profiles start to run together — everyone sounds the same, so it’s hard to differentiate one person from the next.

People tend to say the same things over and over. If I have to read “I really don’t do the club scene anymore, but I like going to bars,” or “I’m looking for someone who enjoys going out but also likes to spend a night relaxing with a movie on the couch,” I’ll probably put my fist through the computer screen. (It’s fine if you like those things. It’s just that they’re so common to so many people, it should be assumed.)

Instead of wading through profiles that just end up frustrating me, I’ve been able to remind myself of all the other things out there to do. For instance, it’s nice to hang out with existing friends — people that I already know I like — instead of someone that I’m probably only going to see once or twice.

I’m not trashing online dating. I was positive about it when I wrote my Online Dating, One Year Later recap post last summer, and I still feel that way. I wouldn’t change anything. I guess, just like with anything else, if you do something long enough you’re going to get bored with it. Or at least need a break once in a while.

I don’t feel like I’m at the point where I want to cancel it completely, though. I’m not bothered by the fee. (Even though I only stay in touch with a few of the guys I’ve met since I started online dating, having them in my life has been worth the money and time I’ve spent with all the others who have come and gone.) So I’ll keep it, at least for a little while longer.

Related Reading:

Lady Brett: Things Not To Do When Dating Me (Before, During or After)

Athena Stars gives us 30 Signs You’re Dating A Jerk.

This blogger was frustrated with dating the same type of guy until she found her now-husband on Match.

New York Times: In the Calculations of Online Dating, Love Can Be Cruel

New York Times: Breaking up in a Digital Fishbowl


  1. I agree re: the frustrating things people sometimes right. The main reason I responded back to Matt (current boyfriend) is because the message he sent me was actually intelligent, thoughtful, and not obvious. I always think it’s best to put unique and interesting things about yourself in a profile.

    Definitely nice to take a break from time to time. There is no one path to dating, and there’s also no need to keep meeting new people if you’re really happy with how your social life is going anyway.

    Posted February 28, 2010 at 4:15 pm #
  2. Amen! from the deeper-voiced side of the choir. It does go both ways. The words “partner in crime” have almost become a automatic disqualifier for me.

    Also, did some travel agency offer the single women of the D.C. area group rates on trips to Machu Picchu and Angkor Wat? Just wondering because it seems one out of three women have pictures of themselves in these places.

    Posted March 1, 2010 at 10:35 am #
  3. Right, sometimes you have to but sometime you must think of it first before you decide.

    Posted March 1, 2010 at 10:50 pm #
  4. And how about when they simply email you and say, “Tell me a little bit about yourself.” I have a hard time summing up my thirty-one year existence in just a few sentences in an email. I, too, am slowly using my online dating membership less and less. But it is nice to have the option and additional outlet for meeting people. I continue to hear success stories from online dating…so we’ll see! And I agree, it is so hard to keep them all straight. A friend of mine used to keep a spreadsheet of her “matches”.

    Posted March 1, 2010 at 11:30 pm #
  5. I just deleted my profile of a site I’ve been on for a long time too. I found I was getting a lot of guys that were either out of town or young – went on a date with a guy last week and I just felt old and cougar like! I think I look younger than I am so they see my photo and don’t care about my age. But I feel the difference with guys in their 20s.

    I’d rather meet someone through the natural flows of life I think.

    Posted March 2, 2010 at 12:24 am #
  6. Haha! You know you’ve been on a dating site too long when all the profiles start blurring together.

    It seems like people don’t even extend any effort when writing their profile.

    Here’s a funny Craigslist Best Of about unoriginal profiles (it’s about half-way down the page)


    Posted March 2, 2010 at 1:14 am #
  7. I knew someone who posted a quiz on her online dating site profile. It was 15 questions that someone had to answer before she’d even talk to them. It accomplished two things

    1. She weeded out all the dudes who just cut and pasted introduction emails to every chick on there


    2. She got some pretty interesting/hilarious responses including the one from her future fiance.

    Posted March 4, 2010 at 10:35 am #
  8. There is definitely a “purgatory” when it comes to online dating and this article is a great description of what it is. You basically have active users, non-active users, then those that exist in-between.

    The only problem with being in the online dating “purgatory” is that you may not be real serious about finding someone while the person you decide to go on a casual date with is. Some services actually have your level of seriousness as an option, which is a nice addition.

    Posted July 13, 2011 at 10:59 pm #