If you’re considering online dating for the first time, or if you’re diving in again, you are probably hoping to meet interesting people and go on a few dates. Part of accomplishing that is having a profile that attracts interest, which is the subject of this week’s Boundless article.
But for Christian women, online dating usually brings up a question: What does it look like for a man to pursue a woman online? Is it OK for a woman to make the first move when she sees a profile she likes?
A recent study conducted by OKCupid among 70,000 of the site’s users found that women who make the first move online are rewarded with a better experience. An article in The New York Times takes a closer look at the study.
It found that women who sent the first message were 2.5 times more likely to receive a response than men who did the same. And the men the women contacted were more “attractive,” as determined by how other users rate the men’s profiles for both looks and content . . . About 12 percent of first messages men send turn into a date, while 30 percent of women’s first messages end up in a date, the site said.
While there’s no way to know for sure, it’s likely that this trend is also true for Christian dating sites. In light of this, here are a few things for Christian women to consider as they navigate online dating.
If, as the woman, you’re uncomfortable with sending the first message, then online dating may not end up being very fruitful for you. One of the benefits of online dating is the sheer number of promising singles you can potentially meet. But you run the risk of getting lost in the sea of potential mates if you aren’t willing to contact a guy who catches your eye.
I’ve discovered that women also tend to over-think and over-analyze the specifics of online dating. We can get so caught up in doing it the “right way” that we make it more stressful than it needs to be. A lot of the dating rituals we expect in real life don’t translate as neatly to the online world, which is why online daters should be prayerful in their approach and wise and discerning in their interactions.
If you’re a woman who is uneasy with making the first move, remember that being the first to reach out doesn’t have to set the pattern for the rest of the relationship. First of all, it’s just a message, and there’s no guarantee it will lead to an actual date, let alone marriage. If you do discover someone special, there will be plenty of opportunities for the man to initiate as the relationship progresses. Once things move from online to face to face, you’ll be able to see what kind of leader he is and let him take the lead.
So if you’re a woman looking for love online, consider being the one to make the first move. It just might pay off.
Copyright 2016 Ashley Boyer Hendley. All rights reserved.