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Online and Speed Dating is a reflection of  the real word. While liars, cheaters and impostors certainly ply their craft on the Web, you will find them at social functions, you'll also find them in nightclubs, among the members of dating services, speed dating parties, cocktail parties and occasionally sitting across from you at the breakfast table. Regardless of where, or how, you meet someone, dating is always a gamble. A little caution will reduce your risk in these matters of the heart.

Be careful who you trust and take your time getting to know someone:

In a perfect world we all want to believe that whoever we talk to is an honest and decent person.  But in today's real and virtual and worlds, you must guard against trusting the untrustworthy and giving away your love under circumstances that could come back to haunt you. Exercise caution and proceed slowly. What do you really know about this person? How can you be sure? Any suitor must earn your trust gradually, through consistently honorable, forthright behavior. Don't give it away for the asking -- and you will be asked. As an added precaution, make sure you set up a secondary email account, to be used just for this relationship, which you can shut down should things seem not right.

Your instincts are right 99% of the time. Trust yourself. Go with your instincts, even when they can't be logically explained. When something feels wrong, it generally is. When someone appears untrustworthy, they usually are. If you want to substantiate an intuitive hunch, hire a service to check on your suitor's background (criminal records, home ownership, bankruptcy, divorce, etc.). These services can be found on the Web or in your Yellow Pages under Investigators. While background information may reassure you about someone's history, it provides no guarantees about future behavior. Ask yourself why you are dating someone you feel the need to investigate.  Ask yourself: Is she who she says she is? Is he/she honest? A murderer? A rapist? An ex-convict? A gambler? An Addict?  A gold digger?

I have a friend who met someone online 3 years ago who was an executive with a Fortune 1000 company.   He would call her everyday, even from other cities when he traveled.   That was part of the charm and the con.    He told her he was divorced and engaged to marry someone else that fell through a few years before.   Within two weeks she found out the he didn't just have two children but a third that was a problem teenager.  Upon further investigation (her instincts were right on) at the county courthouse, she found out he had married and divorced the woman he claimed to be engaged to at one time but never married. Once she started asking he questions about this he stopped calling.....good riddance I say!  There are pathological liars everywhere.  Speed Dating companies DO NOT screen participants.   DON'T believe everything you hear.

Watch for red flags: 

You are a smart can spot the unscrupulous and deceitful jerks. They betray themselves with inconsistency and unexplainable behavior. You should be concerned if your date does any of the following without providing an acceptable explanation:

  • Frequently disappears and becomes unreachable by phone or email

  • Provides inconsistent information about age, interests, marital  or relationship status, profession, employment, and so on. (Yes there are people who will tell you they are divorced and they are separated, that they broke up a relationship 2 months ago and are actually living with someone).

  • Refuses to speak to you on the phone after establishing ongoing, phone conversations, emails, and or dates.

  • After the first meeting, refuses to give you a home number and only calls you from work.  (They could be married, have a live in lover, have a significant other and are looking for their next conquest before ending that relationship).

  • Doesn't provide direct answers to direct questions

  • Never introduces you to friends, professional associates or family members

    Be responsible and trustworthy yourself  Some say that the lines between honesty, exaggeration and deception have blurred, especially in print personals and online dating. Is it a crime to represent yourself as a few years younger, especially when your friends frequently comment that you don't look your age? Has thinning hair become a euphemism for bald? If we want to hear the truth, we must start by telling the truth, even when it isn't easy or advantageous. And we must conduct ourselves and our romances in a responsible manner. Don't fall in love based on a 3-10 minute face to face interview. Don't become prematurely intimate with someone. Live by standards of honesty and decency. Let the buck stop with you.


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