One of the most common questions I hear asked is “How Do I Meet People Who Are Into X?”
This is going to be an ongoing question, but I figured I would break down online dating for sites such as fetlife, fabswingers, okcupid and the like. Be forewarned: this is a long one.
I include okcupid as they are trying to embrace the non monogamous, even if from a flawed view of us. The others are included as many people are abandoning mainstream dating platforms in favour of those which target their specific niches, as these will provide potential partners who are also looking for that kind of relationship.
Optimising your profile is going to be key to narrowing the search and that’s what I aim to help with today. I was going to say perfecting, but people react differently to different profiles.
OK, so dating profiles vs social media sites: when using social media sites for your search, you are typically given more room in your ‘about me’ section. How you use this will depend heavily on what exactly you are looking for.
If you are looking to build friendships, a support network when TSHTF, etc etc etc, then use this to show that side of your personality: pop in jokes, one of those personality surveys, etc.
If on the other hand you are using this specifically for finding a partner, then use it as a personal ad: be eloquent, but not too long winded and remember that you are not charged for the letter, so abbreviations are not really necessary and depending on the personality of the person you are looking for, may even put them off.
You may be tempted to use your username to highlight a physical feature you are proud of, or to boast about sexual prowess. Don’t to that.
The reason you want something more representative of your personality is that you don’t want the first impression of you to be sex based as it frames the entire reaction from that point forward.
Instead, pick something you would be ok with introducing yourself with in public. For me, ‘LaRasa’ sounds close enough to a real surname that I now use it more than my real name, whereas “Hi, I’m BigDickCumzALot42” would likely throw up a few red flags (apologies if this is either your username or your real name: I’m on the tube as I write this and have no signal).
Don’t be tempted to use your real name either unless it is a very common one; you want personal information to be something which you control and you probably don’t want your fetlife information turning up on your next job interview background search.
Whilst being creative, using text-speak is again a red flag for most people. It’s just a username and while you should put *some* effort in, you don’t need it to be representative of who you are and what you are looking for.
Count Your Stats.
As with all social media sites, you have the ability to put in your age and location. If you’re looking to find someone online, I would suggest putting in your actual details. Sure you can be a 92 year old from Antarctica, but the only people looking for that are other nonagenarians from Antarctica.
If you live in a small village or town, pop in the nearest city and if you’re not comfortable putting your exact age in, why not just go for the same bracket? You are more likely to find people who are interested in your age range if you actually put it in.
Next, state what you are looking for. If you are polyamorous, state as much. If monogamy is your thing, then same thing.
Make sure to state whether you are straight, bi or gay, as the more open and honest you are, the easier it will be to find potential matches.
Use Your Profile.
Your profile should not be too focused on one aspect of relationships: all relationships are based on compatibility in a wide range of areas. Health, recreational time, income levels, personality, favourite colours, etc etc etc all have a part to play in how compatible people are, in kinky or vanilla relationships.
If you only focus on the bdsm, you may not find people who you actually enjoy being around when you are not having sexy fun times. Take some time to think about the things you want to include in your profile, including a few sentences describing you in a positive light.
Next up, take some time to think about the kind of person you would like to meet including everything which in your mind would be essential, including body type, height, background, etc. Now take those traits and again, state what you are looking for in a positive light.
If you were looking for me for instance, you may write something like ‘Looking for a short and fluffy teddy for cuddles after a long day at work.’ This says “I work a lot, and when I come home, I want intimacy without specifically being sexual. I prefer shorter and rounder people with body hair.”
Having a particular type of person you are attracted to is not something you should be ashamed of. If you want a model type, state as much. If you prefer beast over beauty, that’s fine too. The point is to know what you want and ask for it.
What Are You Into?
If you are looking for a BDSM based relationship (and if you’re reading this, then you probably are), then you will naturally want to share what you are looking for, whether that is to be a pet or a sadist.
It is tempting to list every single kink you are into, but I would recommend against it. You don’t need to find the *exact* fit, you need to find someone with whom you have enough common ground that you can each explore the uncommon ground. You can find your kinkpatable ground (coining the word right here, right now) together once you have found that common ground.
What I would say is figure out what your safety mantra is: are you SSC (Safe, Sane and Consensual), RACK (Risk Aware Consensual Kink), PRICK (Personal Responsibility Informed Consensual Kink) or CCC (Committed Compassionate Consent)? Are you none of the above?
State this on your profile and three to five of your biggest kinks, your safe sex requirements, std status and so on.
Keep it brief, mention what you are looking for (daddy, Domme, 24/7 slave, etc), state how you identify and define what that means for you (people have different definitions).
Ok. Any good profile will have a good photo as well. Go for a close up, fully clothed shot in casual clothes and another in something smart.
A picture is the first thing a potential date will look at, so make it a good one. Steer clear of things like dick pics for your main profile image. If you absolutely have to have them up, at least jazz them up a bit. Generally though, posting explicit pictures will only attract people looking for sexual encounters and if you’re looking for a relationship, you’re going to leave unfulfilled.
If you are uncomfortable with a picture (remember: there is always the chance of someone you know finding your profile) then avoid overselling your appearance. Be honest to avoid drama.
So there is a fine line which you will need to walk in online dating: you will want to attract the right kind of person, but you will also need to keep private information private.
So here are things which you don’t want to put on your dating profile:
1) your real name.
2) your addresses (either physical or email)
3) the names and ages of any children or the school they attend.
4) personal details of other people.
5) specifics about where you work (e.g, instead of ‘I work at the costa on the high street’, use ‘I work in a cafe’)
These may seem like common sense, but are all drawn from real life examples. This is private sensitive information, only share it when you have built trust and value in someone and established a rapport.
It’s Not Rocket Science
Your profile will not be perfect straight away. If you’re finding that you are getting too many or too few responses then change it up a bit. Reword things and tweak bits and pieces to get a more preferable result. You can always make changes or even put it back the way it was if you prefer. Add and remove details as you are comfortable, until you find the person or people who match your compatibility requirements.
Let me know if this helped you at all, drop an email to firstname.lastname@example.org or even comment on this piece. I can do more specific advice in the future about what to put in the profile, the psychology behind it all and lots more if needed.
Ok guys and gals, that’s all from me in this post: be foolish, happy, wild, sexy & naughty together.