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Weighing-In Online

Dear Philippa:

I've been using the web to meet women, which seems to work all right until I get to first talking to them on the phone. My question is how do you find out how much they weigh and what age they are without making them mad? Even when they include a photo, it is not necessarily recent.

�Paul, Indianapolis

 

Dear Paul,

You are describing a reality that most of us face when we talk to someone we haven't seen yet. It's natural to wonder what the other person looks like. But It's the nature of personal ads (both print and online) that you don't see each other before you meet.

All of us get defensive when someone presses us for details about the parts of us that make us feel the most vulnerable. It's human nature that people want to diminish their perceived flaws. How would you feel if a woman kept pressing you for details about how much hair you had when you were going bald or wearing a toupee?

I just wish people were more honest, less defensive and less evasive about this whole thing. I think it's fair if you want someone fitness oriented and in reasonable shape that the person responding to your ad be in that ballpark-and if they are not, why are they wasting your time and their time? On the other hand, I don't think it is necessary to interrogate the person about their exact statistics. Be clear about what you want in your online profile or when you are responding to other people's profiles so that the right person will recognize themselves in your words.

If you are surfing the web for love or lust, enjoy the medium and accept its limitations. You can't easily verify people's personal data. That means you can't be so package focused. Enjoy some mystery. Be prepared to meet some people who won't live up to their billing and then go on to the next ones.

If you want to be certain what a person looks like before you meet them, maybe you'd do better with video dating-but even then people can look different in person and they can still misrepresent their age.

Paul, I can almost guarantee that if you described the perfect woman for you in terms of looks and age and then you met her, you still might not both click. Chemistry has to do with how you feel when you're with each other-try focusing on finding woman who is somewhere in your ballpark, but more importantly, someone with whom you can be yourself, relax and enjoy life.

 

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