I’ve been in this online dating game for a long time. It started as a convenient way to meet people amidst my workaholic existence in northern Wisconsin, and then, as I gained more experience – and, invariably, delightfully entertaining horror stories – it became a blogging entity of its own, resulting in the advent of The Online Dating Diaries. Who knew that people would go so crazy over bad dating stories?
Which is actually at the heart of where this all started: After slogging through the same bad profiles, messages, and meet-and-greet encounters, I began to notice that the same clueless mistakes were killing the chances of otherwise-great guys. It kind of broke my heart a little to realize that what could have been their Dating Holy Grail was, instead, quickly morphing into a pride-swallowing, ego-bashing experiment in rejection.
The main reason why these guys weren’t having much success was because no one was actually telling them what they were doing wrong: There weren’t any online dating how-to books out there for men, and even though we went worldwide with the Online Dating Diaries, it still didn’t mean that John from Hopkins was reading it (or believing that any of it applied to him).
So I started what I would call a sort of online dating service project: Instead of simply ignoring the bad messages or profiles, I began to respond with some gentle honesty regarding what it was about their online persona that was such a turn-off – not just to me, but to all women – and what they might want to consider doing instead. The first time I saw a response from one of these guys in my inbox, I cringed, expecting to open it and see a string of expletives and/or a defensive rebuttal. Instead, it was a near-gushing thank you. While I’m sure we can all agree that I’m a super great person, I knew it really wasn’t me they were thanking. It was simply the fact that someone was giving them feedback…any type of feedback.
“Will you look at my profile?” One such man asked. “Just tell me what I’m doing wrong and what I should be doing instead. I’ll pay you.” Um, okay! So I did. Word of mouth spread, and soon I was scoring more and more paying gigs to review, revise, or remodel men’s profiles. Then the girls got wind of it, and even though I didn’t think I would have much to offer them, I learned that I had a knack for writing women’s profiles in a way that was all them, but with a little added glow (and no crazy cat stories).
And I loved it. Being able to share all the stories and lessons I had gathered from my own days in online dating and use them in ways that actually helped people was amazing, not to mention incredibly gratifying (who knew that The Worst Date Ever, instead of remaining just a memory I never ever wanted to relive again, would grow into a Valuable Dating Lesson For All?) . And I gotta say it: There is nothing that makes this former cheerleader’s heart burst with happiness more than seeing her secret-crush demographic – the Hobbit-reading, Dungeons-&-Dragons-playing, Monty-Python-quoting nerdatrons – learn how to craft a profile and write a message that has scores of super cute and fun girls clamoring for their attention. Those are my people. And much like Moses, I consider it my calling to help lead them from out of their mom’s basement and into an actual social setting.
And so that, my friends, is the story of how and why Cyber Dating Sidekick began. Welcome to the adventure. If you’re ready to fly into the awesomely exciting world of online dating, I’m here to help make sure you hit the ground running.