Digital Dating for ADD/ADHD Singles: Tips and Tricks for Online Dating SitesFebruary 27th, 2012 by admin
While there’s still no guarantee that hopping online will lead to true love, nobody can deny that American adults are flocking to online dating communities. The most staggering statistic from the study says that online dating is the second most common way to start a relationship today!
So whether you’ve been part of one of these sites for ages or you’re new to the bandwagon, there are helpful tips that will allow you to get the most out of the experience, especially as a single person with the ADD/ADHD brain type.
There are many online dating sites to choose from. Each has its own flavor, and its unique way of creating matches. Generally, you will complete an in-depth survey when joining a dating community, and the site will use math to find other users who answered the survey questions similarly. Less often, sites use a personality test and create matches based on the compatibility of different personality types.
The most popular sites are eHarmony, Match.com, OK Cupid and Chemistry.com. The benefit of choosing a mainstream site is that there will probably be more singles in your area. However, there are plenty of worthwhile sites that cater to specific demographics, like religious groups, seniors, or physically active singles.
The most important part of your profile is your photo, hands down. All of the tips sections on the top dating sites agree (as does any expert who has ever written on the topic). The most common blunder is to post your favorite photo of yourself – the one from fifteen pounds, three hair colors and twenty years ago! It does not matter how strong the connection is over email or phone calls. If you look drastically different from the photo, your match will feel tricked as soon as you meet in person. He or she will wonder, how else have I been lied to?
Avoid that situation entirely with these tips:
- Choose a photo from the last 12 months.
- Smile, look at the camera, and make sure the photograph looks (and feels) like you.
- Pick a wide shot that shows your full body.
- Take the photo in your element (walking the beach, playing a sport, standing in your garden).
- Avoid silly pictures (funny faces, costumes, odd poses) because the sense of humor might not translate.
Overall, a great profile picture sends a message about who you are and how you look. That way, your match has an accurate impression of you, and the photo acts as a conversation starter. Even if you aren’t a fan of posing for photos, keep in mind that the people on these sites are looking for quality, long-term relationships, not just the most attractive person in the bar.
Tell Me More
Once you’ve got the perfect photograph taken care of, your personal statement is the next key to a great profile. It’s always difficult to summarize your entire personality in a paragraph or two, especially when addressing sensitive topics like your ADD/ADHD. Striking the right tone can be tricky, so here are some word choice tips:
- Keep things upbeat. Talk about how you like to spend your time and what you like about yourself.
- Avoid cliches that don’t actually convey any meaning, like “I like to have fun.” It’s always better to be specific and authentic.
- Choose your words carefully if you describe your ideal match. Listing off your “don’t”s (“no smokers, no liars, no penny pinchers!”) can seem negative and melodramatic.
- Skip over-the-top fairy tale descriptions of your perfect relationship (“I’m just waiting to be treated like a princess by my knight in shining armor”). It risks sounding unrealistic, high-maintenance, even childish.
- Explain what you bring to a relationship in your own words. This shows that you have a generous spirit, and you know that a relationship is about two people bringing out the best in each other.
- Address your ADD/ADHD in a light way if you’re comfortable putting it out on the table. Emphasize the positives: you’re creative, energetic and always ready to try new things.
- Be brief. Just because the field might have a limit of 2,000 words, you don’t have to use them all! You want someone to read your profile quickly and feel eager to learn more.
Make the Most of It
With the great profile you’ve put together, the messages from other singles will be rolling in! This is where things can get rocky for someone who has trouble with focus and decision-making. If you’ve got too many conversations going on, it can be easy to confuse them, or to ignore one accidentally and leave the match feeling ditched. Here are some good ground rules to get the most out of online dating:
- Try limiting the number of relationships that you have in development at a given time, maybe to three or four. When you feel a connection to a new match, reflect on the existing conversations you have going and end one that isn’t leading anywhere.
- Create your ideal road map of the steps between getting matched up online and meeting in person. Get to know each other on the site, through email, on the phone, via text, and/or over video chat. Figure out what fits your style the best.
- Don’t get trapped online. If you message each other for months before meeting face to face, you might be very emotionally invested by the time you realize that there’s no spark. Chemistry is a vital part of any relationship, and it’s hard to gauge that through a computer screen.
- Keep your eye on the prize: having a serious relationship in real life with a unique person! Searching dozens and dozens of profiles can start to feel like a trip to the mall. People aren’t created mix-and-match like an outfit. Don’t ignore good matches and hold out for some impossible fantasy person.
So sign up, log on and start searching. A wonderful significant other might just be a click away!
Carol Gignoux, M.Ed. is a well established expert within the ADHD coaching, consulting and training profession with over 35 years experience working with ADHD and over 16 years as a professional coach. Carol and her team of experts specialize in coaching adults, couples, small business owners, and entrepreneurs who want to move their businesses from being successful to extraordinary, and develop the skills and confidence to achieve better results in their academic, professional, and personal lives. Carol is currently writing her book, The Asset: Your Success Gene and the Myth of ADD.