For this week's article, I thought it would be fun to share some real questions from some of my clients and, of course, my responses. Remember, there are no dumb questions.
Q: I realize a barrier to finding someone acceptable online is my age. Friends have encouraged me to lie about my age online because I look and behave much younger. Ridiculous! After writing to one guy, he responded, "I'm not looking for a 55-year-old divorced woman in Northern Virginia!" There is no way I would want to lie my way into a relationship with anyone. I realize that the same way I have an idea in my head as to what men of a certain age are all about, so do they about women. Therefore, if I am an active, vibrant, and youthful looking woman (now) of 56, I need to meet someone in person who won't judge me based upon my profile alone. - R.S., 55, Arlington, Va.
A: I respect that you stood your ground with your friends re: lying about your age. So many of my clients (most of the women) want to lie, and I always tell them that I don't condone it. Why would they want to start a relationship based on a lie anyway? Bad idea. I agree 100 percent that the right man will love you for being you, no matter how old you are.
Q: A problem I am currently having with guys is the "date follow-through." Guys will ask me out on a date online, usually saying something like "Let's get drinks next week." I say something like, "That sounds great. I'm free on Tuesday and Thursday after work around 6:30." Then sometimes, they don't get back to me. Or (in the case of the one guy I had a great date with) he said "Let's hang out this week." I gave him my schedule in the same way as above. Then he tells me that he's busy this week. I say "maybe the weekend." Two days later and no response.
I think that I might be too forward with guys. I'm a very forward and direct person in general and have to make sure that I limit this trait because guys want to be in control. When guys casually ask me out on a date online is there a better way to make it happen without scaring them off by being too forward? - N.P., 26, Philadelphia, Pa.
A: You actually remind me of me in terms of being forward and being a planner, and there is nothing wrong with that - it's just your personality. (And it's not like you're asking them out.) Doesn't it annoy you when a guy doesn't follow through or drops the ball? Well, if it annoys you now after one date or even before the date, it'll annoy you throughout life. So, rather than changing your tactic (giving two choices, like Tuesday or Thursday, as you said below, is what I would recommend as well because it tells him when you're free but ultimately lets him pick the final date), it's more about finding a mature guy who actually takes the lead and doesn't just casually ask you out with no intention of putting something on the calendar. If you do want to soften it a little, you could say, "That sounds great. Tuesday or Thursday might work for me if that works for you." It's a little less forward and more "cool" with the word "might" in there and removing the time (after 6:30).
What are your burning dating questions? Feel free to leave them in the comments for me to address in a future post on A Little Nudge.
Erika Ettin is the founder of A Little Nudge, http://www.alittlenudge.com, where she helps others navigate the often intimidating world of online dating by writing unique profiles, helping to choose the best profile pictures, writing one-of-a-kind emails to get someone's attention, and planning dates. Want to connect with Erika? Join her newsletter, eepurl.com/dpHcH, for updates and tips.