It seems like dating is the topic du jour lately. From mainstream media outlets like “Nightline” and the Wall Street Journal continuously pondering the lives of single sisters, to films that constantly depict successful, lonely women looking for love, hooking up and finding “the one” seems like it’s on everyone’s mind these days.
But despite our infatuation with finding Mr. Right (or Mr. Right Now), many of us are fumbling our way through the dating game. Increasingly, we are living our lives, not just in real time, but also via the web. Sites like Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn have changed how we interact, both personally and professionally, and while much of it has been for the better, many of us have found that the interwebs have had a negative impact on our dating lives.
Gone are the days when you’d spend hours on the phone talking to your latest crush. We no longer have to speak to each other to share our life stories. Social networking sites and Google have made learning about your potential boo easier, but not as much fun. These days courting is done via text message, and those good morning/ good night calls that used to get you all giddy, are replaced by a tweet or Facebook poke.
To be clear, I have nothing against technology. I love it. But when it comes to matters of the heart, I’m a little old fashioned. So what’s a girl to do when she’s dating in the digital age, stalking is easier than ever, and a potential boo can uncover ALL of the skeletons in your closet before your second date?
Here are 5 tips to successfully navigate dating in noughties and beyond:
1) Have a Google Voice number: Yes, you have a cell phone number, so you may be wondering why you need another? One reason: Safety. I’ve seen women verbally harassed, and even assaulted, for refusing to give up the digits. So having a Google Voice number is not only smart, it’s also safe. If the whole, “I got a man” thing doesn’t knock down the confidence of a suitor, give him your Google Voice number and block it if/when he calls. Or better yet, assign him a permanent “busy” signal. Sure, it’s a little passive aggressive, but I’m all about safety first.