Digital love…the new matchmaker

Let’s face reality. Whether or not people’s lives have become more hectic, their days more exhausting, or have given up other alternatives altogether, online dating services have become more appealing as time progresses. Internet dating has generally held a poor reputation to our generation. Sites such as, OKCupid, and eHarmony are speculated to cater to a group of individuals who are either divorced, widowed, cheating, desperate, or just plain ancient.

When couples who have met online are asked how they met, most seem to hang their heads in shame while admitting to an internet dating service. In fact, some have a fantastic re-created story invented just to spare themselves the embarrassment and explanation. “When my parents asked how we met, I told them that a friend introduced us at a party and we have gone out since then,” stated student Tiffany Martinez in actuality met her current boyfriend on eHarmony.

Individuals who openly admit to using these black-listed sites, and are of the college age bracket, are seen, or perhaps imagined, to fit these “dating stereotypes” that we, the average student have adopted. “Isn’t that stuff for old people who never go out?” laughed student Matt Martinez. However, who is to say that these reputations are completely factual? What if this image we have created in our minds turned out to be false? If so, will it than be socially acceptable to speak freely about our online dating ventures without looks of stereotypical judgment?

After questioning many friends, family members, and classmates to gain further insight to this mystery of online dating, a fellow classmate recently signed up for a dating service just one week prior. Michelle Saenz, 22, has been through her share of relationship ups and downs, mostly downs she might press. There have been guys who have juggled another girl on the side, those who have been dishonest, and then some who were merely disconnected. Fed up and tired, Saenz searched for a new way to meet potential partners, in comes online dating. “I figured why not?” spoke Saenz, “I don’t have time with work and homework to go out to bars like most people.” eHarmony, established in 2000, is a Santa Monica based company that pairs up probable singles through their own methods of compatibility matching. The site promotes pairing based on core traits and values.

Although there have been a fair share of horror eHarmony dates, involving lies about age and appearance, Saenz was ready to take the leap and see if fate was on her side. Being two weeks deep, Saenz was still fresh on the site. Questions covered everything from athletic, adventurous, stress-related, and humorous topics to heavier issues such as race, religion, smoking, and drinking. Within the first week, she was contacted regarding matches. Surprise, surprise, everyone appeared perfectly normal. A bunch of busy college students who maintained active lifestyles. Saenz shared, “I actually have already been on a date, and it sucked. I kind of went against the eHarmony rules, and we met up before we were suppose to.”

Although eHarmony has not proven itself to be 100% accurate in Saenz’ case thus far, she has not given up. There have been no encounters with divorcees, or old, desperate men in regards to Saenz’ profile. But, there has been a bounty of young college students, like ourselves, looking for someone to enjoy life with. “I’m already talking to someone else, doing it the right way this time. I might get lucky, and find someone I like on here, and still be able to work and go to school full time.” said Saenz. Why people remain so embarrassed, who knows. Online dating seems to cater to those who maintain a busy lifestyle…and that is all.

Internet dating services seem to be here to stay, with or without the stereotypes. As for the man you’ve met online, you can give him enhancements like the Royal Honey for him to make your date nights more exciting.