Internet dating. Such fun. Such excruciating mental and emotional torture, yet it’s torture I am prepared to endure. At least for now. Because I am an eternal optimist (with just a dash of masochism thrown in).
I’ve been doing this online dating thing on and off for a while and one of the things I’ve noticed (and something which happened yesterday) is the chap who does not include his photo in his profile. I wouldn’t say I come across these sorts on a daily basis but they do come along from time to time. You may think nothing of there not being a photo. Perhaps it’s not been approved yet, perhaps he has it hidden for privacy purposes. But no, in these cases, my experience has been that it’s deliberately omitted. And I’ve begun to notice certain themes emerging:
The man in question (MIQ) usually contacts me via email without having enquired as to my interest first. This means that he has spent money to contact me which usually leads to an assumption of obligation on my part. So when I politely decline further contact without a photo I get more and more lengthy emails about why I am wrong in my decision not to correspond.
When I request a photo, the MIQ generally has an elaborate response as to why he doesn’t have a photo, such as, he is a very private person and does not wish to have friends/acquaintances find out what he is doing or he is a Very Important Person and to show his face on an internet dating site would potentially cause untold embarrassment. Which makes me wonder why on earth go on a dating website in the first place?
Another thing I’ve noticed is that the MIQ claims to be highly educated/intelligent and writes long and flowing emails about just how highly evolved he is. So highly evolved in fact, that he does not wish to be judged on his looks, that he has been judged that way in the past and he wishes a woman to know him for his personality. This MIQ is usually adept at delivering the message that the mere request for his photo shows how I am somewhat of a lesser being but that he will overlook that for now.
Then there is the response requesting my phone number/email address so that he can send me a picture, thus saving him the horror of submitting it to an internet dating site, despite the fact that most of these sites have pretty strong security settings which the user can control to keep unwanted admirers out. This rings major alarm bells for me and generally results in a block.
The thing about this is that these men have always seen my photo so cries that they are not interested in looks is patently untrue. Stay with me now dear reader, I’m not claiming I am a ravishing beauty by any means, I am simply stating that the person who has contacted me has viewed my photograph and knows what I look like, was probably not completely repulsed and has seen fit to contact me.
The fact remains that whilst yes, time tends to be the great equalizer in the looks department, finding someone physically attractive is going to be a big part of the dating game. You can be the nicest, kindest, most decent man in the world but if you have a face tattoo and missing front teeth I will not be attracted to you. I might be your friend, and I might introduce you to a single girlfriend who I know goes in for that sort of thing, but you and I will never being going to bed together. Similarly, if you’ve got a thing for petite blondes, then as a brown eyed, curvy brunette, I am never going to be someone you’re physically attracted to. It’s just the way it is.
I am a pretty open person. I have two or three pictures on my profile which I update regularly. This is because I don’t have a cursed portrait in my attic and time marches on so I want to make sure I am being honest (filters notwithstanding). I accept that everyone isn’t as open as I am but if you’ve seen mine, then you need to show me yours. Fair’s fair.
Yesterday’s MIQ contacted me without prompting, claimed superior intelligence, insisted on being considered for his personality before he would show his face and was condescending of tone. Irrespective of how good-looking a person might be, none of those traits are attractive.
It’s ironic really, because the behaviour of this MIQ and those before him is far more revealing than any photograph could be.