Wedding Woes

Stop looking on apps or websites for men?

Dear Prudence,
I’m recently getting back into dating after 11 years of marriage. The dating scene is very different than it used to be. I’ve been using an app to meet men because it seems like that’s what the kids are doing these days and I don’t have a lot of options to meet people in my everyday life. It just so happens that I’m really good at finding information about people, and as I get to know these men, I dig about to find out more. (My favorite is finding the DUI of a guy even though he’d never told me his name. I also discovered a guy was catfishing me.) I do it for a few reasons. First and foremost, it turns out that most men are full of it, at least those on dating apps. I want to weed out the people who aren’t worth my time. It’s also a challenge, and a delightful puzzle. Because I see it as a puzzle, I usually end up down a rabbit hole of information about these guys. I find their jobs, their homes, sometimes the homes they grew up in, Instagram accounts, Facebook accounts, Twitter feeds, and on and on.

My friends think I’m a bit stalkerish and that I should just let things develop naturally. I’d rather know ahead of time if the guy I’m chatting with is actually married with a 6-week-old. (That really happened.) What say you? Am I intruding on their privacy? I never cross any legal lines to find these things out. It’s all right there on the internet for anyone who’s willing to look. But I usually end up with a hell of a lot more knowledge than they’d probably be willing to share with me.
—Harmless Stalking Is Fun

Re: Stop looking on apps or websites for men?

  • I personally don't blame her for trying to find out information about the people she is dating.  The world is so much different when you are dating someone who is a complete stranger to you.  I don't think that I would go so far as to look into their childhood home (that seems weird).  But checking their social media and their criminal record isn't out of line, IMO.

    charlotte989875short+sassyOliveOilsMomsouthernbelle0915
  • CharmedPamCharmedPam Chicagoburbs
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    yeah, I agree - if it's a simple search and the info is out there, why not?  I never did that when I was using online sites, but it actually just never occurred to me. It's smart to!

    Ro041
  • Looking at public information is a smart thing to do before meeting a stranger for a possible intimate encounter.  If she is going overboard and just looking for information (rather than red flags), I think that's too much.  But it's smart to at least look up the person's criminal record if you live in a state where that information is stored and easily available electronically.

    charlotte989875
  • CharmedPamCharmedPam Chicagoburbs
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    edited December 2017
    A DUI wouldn't be a deal breaker to me.  A drug bust would be a different story.

    edit: unless he's REALLY good at selling drugs and has mucho money....but then again, he can't be good if he got busted?  nevermind.

    charlotte989875short+sassysparklepants41
  • My mum is looking at the 'dating scene' after being married for 30yrs .... it's not easy.

    LW needs to stay off apps and try to meet people through friends, etc. Although with the magical invention of social media, it's hard not to. I remember meeting M and that night I looked up his fb to figure who he was and what he was like online. So I get it, hard not to fall down rabbit hole. But LW needs to figure out how to stay out of the hole.
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  • I'm on the fence with this one.  Yes, some online digging would probably happen on my end if I were to ever find myself single and trying to navigate dating. 

    But she seems to oddly...delight in having all this information and at the end she's all, "I have information they may never want to tell me."  That kind of glee feels icky to me.  Also, I'd fuck up and bring up something they never told me.  LOL 
    short+sassyOliveOilsMomlevioosaMissKittyDanger
  • I once had a guy I met through work send me an email at 3am asking me out on a date.  I immediately looked him up on my state's criminal database and figured out he had 3 DUIs and was not even licensed to drive at that point.  No thanks.  I figured he was drunk when he emailed me and politely declined.  

    charlotte989875short+sassyOliveOilsMom
  • CharmedPamCharmedPam Chicagoburbs
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    Yeah, I don't have a problem with trying to be safe, but it doesn't sound like she's doing this because she really wants to date people, but rather because she likes to dig until she finds a reason not to date people.
    I think you hit the nail on the head with that one.

  • mrsconn23 said:
    I'm on the fence with this one.  Yes, some online digging would probably happen on my end if I were to ever find myself single and trying to navigate dating. 

    But she seems to oddly...delight in having all this information and at the end she's all, "I have information they may never want to tell me."  That kind of glee feels icky to me.  Also, I'd fuck up and bring up something they never told me.  LOL 
    Yeah, I don't have a problem with trying to be safe, but it doesn't sound like she's doing this because she really wants to date people, but rather because she likes to dig until she finds a reason not to date people.
    Yup. There's a line and I think LW is crossing it. 
    short+sassyMissKittyDanger
  • Yup. There's a line and I think LW is crossing it. 

    This is exactly my thought.

    It is a GREAT idea to look up whatever basic info is readily available.  Criminal record, marriage license, etc.  I could even see going as far as what's on their main FB page, just to get the potential slant on their personality and views.

    But this LW is going WAY overboard.  Leave something to discover about them for the first few dates, lol!

    I'm picturing if I went on a date with someone who did this to me.  And our conversation is like, "I see you grew up in San Clemente, did you ever meet Nixon (haha)?  Oh wow, you played the trumpet in your HS marching band.  What a coincidence, I played the clarinet.  I noticed you haven't posted on the Volition mystery shopping forum for a few years, did you stop MSing?"

    That's when an "emergency" would suddenly pop up on my phone, lol.

    Wedding Countdown Ticker
    charlotte989875mrsconn23sparklepants41
  • I don't think she's crossing any lines, personally. She's looking up publicly available information to avoid people she doesn't want to date.

    But I'm with @flantastic on this one - it doesn't really seem like she WANTS to date. So I don't think the issue is googling people or apps or dating websites....it's that she doesn't seem very serious about trying to find good guys. Yet. Maybe she needs to have more single time and then get back in the ring.
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    charlotte989875
  • mrsconn23 said:
    I'm on the fence with this one.  Yes, some online digging would probably happen on my end if I were to ever find myself single and trying to navigate dating. 

    But she seems to oddly...delight in having all this information and at the end she's all, "I have information they may never want to tell me."  That kind of glee feels icky to me.  Also, I'd fuck up and bring up something they never told me.  LOL 
    I did this with M!
    He gave me a look - like "how did you know that?" kind - and then I nearly died of embarrassment. He thought it was funny when I told him how I knew that info. It wasn't something weird, just random fact he hadn't mentioned. Keeping in mind, I had met him the night before. Not even 12hrs prior, and I had already Facebooked him.

    For awhile it was a running joke between us.
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    short+sassy
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