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Love, Singles & Dating

Online Dating: 6 Rules to Stay Safe

by: Aly Walansky


When entering the world of online dating, it’s sad but true: A little paranoia goes a long way!

Rule #1: Don’t give out your address “My number-one rule is: Do NOT let someone you just met – online or otherwise – pick you up at your home. You do not want a stranger – and yes, no matter how many times you’ve emailed, talked on the phone and viewed his profile, he’s still a stranger – to know where you live!” says Ginger Ema, author of Back on Top: Fearless Dating After Divorce (Globe Pequot Press, May 2009).

Rule #2: Meet on your turf
So, where should this first date take place? Meet somewhere convenient for you, in a public place, hopefully where you know some of the wait staff or bartenders. “I probably took forty-five first dates to the same little café a few miles from my home, in a busy retail area. They knew me there – heck, I think they had a betting pool in the back about which guy I would end up with. But I felt safe!” Ginger says.

Rule #3: Drive yourself
The safety doesn’t end there. When going on this first date, be sure that you take your own car and you tell a friend where you are going and the name of the person you are meeting (hopefully it is his actual name), and you have an exit strategy. This can be something like telling your date ahead of time that you’ve got a meeting or have to pick up the kids. “When you meet a guy out, you can leave at any time. This is incredibly important when there are 20 million guys online, and you’re not doing an Intelius.com report on each one. If something feels awkward, off, or it’s simply not a match, you say thank you and get in your car and go home,” Ginger says.

Rule #4: Keep personal info personal
Another important safety tip before even getting to that first date is to create an anonymous email account for one that does not include your first name or last name and that doesn’t have your birth date as part of the username. You don’t want to give out all that information to people you are just meeting, it’s how they can stalk you!

Rule #5: Block your number
It’s also a good idea to learn to block your number when you are calling someone from your cell phone. You may not want a new guy to have your cell phone number yet – maybe never!

Rule #6: Don’t bring a new date home
Ginger also suggests never bring a new date to your home to meet your children. In fact, experts recommend that your kids not meet anyone you are dating until it is a serious, exclusive relationship – long enough for you to feel very comfortable about who this man is, and to know that this is something long-term.

Your kids have already had disruption to their lives, no matter how amicable a divorce is. And children can be funny – they may tell us they want us to date; they may tell us they want us to go out, but they are affected by anything that rocks their world. Your kids just don’t need to be in on your dating stories, or who your ex is dating, either. On the other hand, once you are serious with someone, slowly introduce him to your child(ren). “Nothing surprised me more than having a relationship that integrated with the rest of my life. I seriously thought I would only date every Wednesday and every other weekend – when my son was with his dad. And that’s how it went for years – I didn’t date on ‘my son’s time,’” Ginger says. “But once I was in a long-term relationship that I knew was going to last, I introduced him to my son. I never imagined a holistic post-divorce relationship where my son likes my boyfriend, my boyfriend likes my son (this is saying a lot – he is, after all, a teenager). My ex likes my boyfriend and vice versa – I am the Demi Moore of my neighborhood!”

“While not everyone who dates online loves it, it is still the best place to meet more men per minute. I mean, I’ve been viewed 48,000 times on one site! Where else would I have a pool of 48,000 interested men? “

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Reader Comments:

36 Responses to “Online Dating: 6 Rules to Stay Safe”

  1. Hi,dear members it’s true but some times it keeps some friend/partners not to trust one another.Some times some people needs it.

  2. mercy says:

    Hi deariae.i agreed with ur point and ave also learn 1 or 2 things.still expectg more messages 4rm u.thanks.

  3. Victoria and Esther Griffens and Meijer says:

    Are these Rules for men or Women?Rule 1 and 2 Are voidable, you are not expected to give someone you just met your address the same day, but what if he wanted to express romance, send some flowers blabla bla ? 2,Meet on your Turf, the guy wants to meet on his Turf, the Lady wants to meet on her Turf how will that be Arranged?

    Rule 3 Ok,

    RULE 4??How can a guy know about you especially when some ladies think everything you ask is personal most esp women with mood swings?
    Rule 5 Block your number, if he is Unable to connect to internet , busy at work and can only sms or call for a few mins, Communication is the key to success of any relationship , he is not contacting you and you assume the guy isn’t interested , then whose fault is it?
    Rule 6 Ok, but never say never, how about love at sight ??

    Conclusion? everyone needs a break i do not think there are rules for falling in Love, all we need do is follow our hearts ,seek advise, try to be open and be cautious, the way you handle things, shows how the other person will be able to reciprocate

  4. randolf says:

    i am looking for lover

  5. EDDY says:

    this is all ship ya talking about ….dont forget there is love at first sight and its last long

  6. sait mf faal says:

    when i was in college i received an email from a so jessica montel from the united states. before i know what was going on, i was invited and directed to send money through the western union money transfer.it makes me hate the net and stop answering mails for the feeling that had for the first time meeting somewhat that i love.of course they were scammers. but they failed.

  7. ann charles says:

    thanks alot ,but i hav only one mail which i use 4 most of the work on net what i do cos i hav already chated with so many people

  8. Paul says:

    Online dating is gud but truthfulnes,sincerity is problem.fm Paul.i am searching 4 my mis right.senatorpaul4u@yahoo.com if u’r pm me.

  9. collins.c says:

    online dating is good cos with that u find ur tru love,but many men used this to corlet money from wemen and hurt them just like that and u no that is not good.ok in my own side of it i am a man i came to online to look for my own love the person i can realy trust and believe on and i hav look for someone to love me just the way i do cos deep in my heart i need a life time woman to be with.but did u no what i get from those wemen outthere they say day hav being hurt befor so day dont believe in anyone online.so what am trying to say is that pls let us stop doing dose things that is not good and pls i am telling all those that are doing this,what u dont wat people to do to u pls dont do it to others cos we are living in one world and let us make online dating a real one we can believe on each other,and to those scammers out there i tell u this one day ur up is going to full,and remember that u hav a sister too and if someone sud do that to ur own sister how will u feel.

  10. Opsen says:

    Anybody i need reliable dating sites..i will so much appreciate if any body can post on here some..looking forward..my email is opsen.jack25@yahoo.com

  11. life is noe always a bed of roses,so be dear friends be careful

  12. precoiustheodora says:

    hi dear? just want to meet people online and be friend to them.

  13. Lovingmeisenough says:

    Be aware that online dating sites are crammed full of scammers and the use poems word for word off this site and pass it off as there own trying to get you to fall for them. Eventually you find they are from Nigeria and just want your money!!!!! It’s sad really. Makes trusting very hard!

  14. kelvin says:

    yah, those are cool points thanks for lettin them out i’ve learnt one thing from it and have corrected my mistakes. thanks dear

  15. magrat says:

    well who know where you right one will come from you only good knows that i want you to know that cars get accident but still people buy car but they drive very careful .i want you all to know that never give up your faith love come to those who believe in it i want you to you have to read that better before give he or her your heart thank you am sangle lady who looking for relationship that will lead to marriage here is my email magrat_ghyr@yahoo.com

  16. henry says:

    hey this is a fucking shit,not every man will take it,bass on your write up here,how can there be effective communication,to be strict it not good ,especially in love afire,

  17. PIUS SUNDAY says:


  18. PIUS SUNDAY says:

    no comment it is the real fact

  19. michael christ says:

    dear friend i would like to let u know dat i love to join u pleaseeeeee!

  20. I was going to meet someone yesterday on my turf. Because I have 4 children that depend on me I felt I needed to check this man out first. Much to my surprise he would not give out his full name and address. I cancelled the date. I was just too scared. This was the first for me. I feel bad but after reading this forum I wonder if he was right. Any advise. Also he seemed to be pushing the meeting thing real fast.

    • Susan says:

      I was involved with someone that was a scammer. He told me he was born in the US, divorced, a single dad,and was working in Nigeria. Later on, unfornately; I found out it was a lie. Do you know his name by any chance.

  21. Lisa says:

    I started talking to someone online and seemed realy nice a few days later said his son was bad sick and needed 300 dollars for meds. I didn’t give it to him, but to use ur on kid for this is really sick. oh and yes he was from Nijeria.

  22. daminx says:

    life is none always a bed of roses,so be dear friends be carefully, those are cool points thanks for letting them out i’ have learn one or two thing from it and have corrected my mistakes. thanks friends

    • kay sapong says:

      hi dear one,i guess you are doing great and kicking.i would love to get connected to you as friend.do you mind?well have a wonderful night.i am hoping to catch up with you again soon

  23. Am a very respectful and humble person, I’m very friendly,open minded and straight forward in life,loving and caring person who knows how to take very good care of a man especially giving her sense of belonging in everything I do in life. I am very quiet at first but I warm up quickly, Communication is very
    important to me. yuo can add me on this E-maill talkfomt@yahoo.com

  24. maria cinderella says:

    Hi,I’m cindy, im from philippines. I met someone from the net I thought he will come and visits me.. we knew each other for almost 9 months.. I keep communicating with him but just last month when he started ignoring me and find out that he was dating someone already at there country and he choose him than me.. It’s soo sad but life must go on. I am trying to find someone whose really serious about relationship and meeting someone for real.. one with word of honor, and truly knows how to love, care and respect as I am to him. If somebody wants to make friends with me and want it to try to take a chance for a serious commitment, you can reach me at my phone +639089877419, in that way I will be able to know if your serious by then I’ll just give u my email after we talk. Thanks. Take care.

  25. Meeting people online have advantage and disadvantages. When you involved yourself in online dating you are taking the risks of talking to a stranger, seeing a stranger and loving a stranger. It doesn’t mean that we should not trust any person but let’s just give ourselves limitations for knowing a man. It is always safe for us girls to have the trait of perseverance to get to know well a man.

    just a tip, if you don’t want to share your personal stuff right away I suggest that you shouldn’t lie with your online profile also. It’s better to tell the truth from the start (but with limitations of course) than to be blame as a liar.

  26. bernard says:

    hello people my name is bernard 20 years old.you can add mensahbernard147@yahoo.com.

  27. Hi, How are you doing today? I was browsing through profiles and found your profile most interesting and taught I should get in touch.. I am on here looking for a serious relationship and I think we have somethings in common. A little more about me..I am a Handsome looking man with a lovely and attractive look…I will send you a email through my email when I hear from you..I am also very adventurous person who loves life at its fullest. I love the outdoors and also love almost anything called sports. I’m tender, caring and loving and can make anyone laugh at anytime… I am looking for a friend , someone that can be my lover and we can get to know each other well and hopefully get together, plan life and get settled for what life’s has got to give us.. I believe you and I could be ….i am a construction engineer.I really want to get settled in life, I just hope i can find a woman that can mend my heart cos right now my heart is burnt. If you care to know more about me and also believe we have somethings in common, you can email me directly to ifetajohnson@yahoo.com Tell me whole lots about you, what likes and dislikes, what makes you happy in life, what you do for a living, your family, your past love and whole lots of them and drolly send me some of your pics.. Hope to hear from you Johnson, …lol

  28. Susan says:

    I was involved with a man who I later found out was a scammer. He told me he was born in the states, had a son, single dad, and was working in Nigeria. He never asked me for money which is weird.

  29. Njili Mwakyoma says:

    Your lesson is good and meeningful. Ilove it my self.

  30. Keanu says:

    Thanks for advice

  31. Keanu says:

    Dating with Girlfriend are safe or secure ???? ask me …

  32. dede says:

    whats up are you doing

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