Despite what most people would think, online dating isn't entirely a new thing. It has been around ever since the Internet was born. From the time internet users were able to post messages on old school bulletin board systems to today's modern dating apps, people have always been trying to find love in cyberspace no matter the platform they're on.
Some were successful, others not much so. Even if the mode of communication is different, there's actually little difference in dating someone in real life versus online dating. The usual red flags apply- if a person seems shady, has some major personality issues, or is downright disrespectful upfront, it's probably a no-go. However, due to the very pseudo-anonymous nature of the internet itself, it's easy to be lulled into a false sense of security with the person you're dating. No matter the platform you're on- whether it's a Sugar Daddy Website or one of those many dating apps that have sprouted up nowadays- here are some of the red flags that you need to watch out for before you swipe right.
Incomplete Profiles, No Bio
Sure, they might just be lazy that's why their profiles aren't completely filled out. But what does that exactly say about a person? It can mean that they can't be bothered to exert the minimum amount of effort just to make themselves look friendlier or more appealing to potential dates. There's a huge chance that they're there just for no-strings-attached affairs, short-lived flings or one-night-stands (hence them not even bothering to invest a small amount of time on filling up a profile). If that's not what you're looking for, then better stay away from people with lackluster, incomplete, barely-there profiles.
Sending Inappropriate or Sexually-Explicit Messages
Sure, sexting is fun, but you need to at least get to know the person first. And of course, both of you need to be consenting to it. If your online date starts sending you sexually-explicit messages without warning (and without you consenting to it), then it's a clear red flag. He or she is not respecting your boundaries online, and will probably not respect your boundaries in real life too if you ever decide to meet up.
Not Respecting Digital Boundaries
Speaking of boundaries, there are some people who don't think that online or digital boundaries don't have as much weight as real life boundaries do. Potential matches should always respect your digital boundaries. For example, if your match is forcing you to meet up or trying to take the conversation to another platform, and then you refuse, they should respect it. They shouldn't also try to pry personal details out of you that you're not willing to share, such as your real name, job, where you live, and other such information.
Replying With One-Word Answers
We get it, talking to someone new, especially someone you don't know in real life and know only through their online profiles is a bit intimidating. Of course, there's going to be a lot of awkwardness there. However, there's going to be a point that you would need to keep a conversation going so that you have a chance to get to know the other person better. If your match is replying with one-word answers, and you're the only one who is exerting effort to keep the conversation alive, then maybe it's time to just drop the person altogether. Clearly, he or she is not interested in knowing you better or that you two are incompatible with each other.
Having Photos That Are a Little Too Good
This isn't really a red flag per se, but rather just something to be cautious about. There's some chance that your match might just be a good photographer and takes great photos of themselves, but if they don't present as such and have photos that look like professional photoshoots, then it's time to be a bit wary. The danger of catfishing in online dating is very real. As the popular saying goes, if it's too good to be true, then it probably is. Better run those pictures on reverse image search tools so that you can be at least assured that your match is who they say they are.
Finding love online can both be an exciting and confusing process, but that doesn't mean that you should let your guard down. It's always best to be prepared and cautious when entering the online dating scene. Just remember, recognizing these red flags early on can help save you a lot of time and heartache in the long run.
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