I'll third that! It's difficult with online dating to begin with. I think the best approach in this setting is to just say, "Hey - do you want to get together sometime just as friends? No pressure?" To me, that takes away a lot of the nervousness of meeting for the first time. Plus, if the person turns out to be incredibly WEIRD (see worst dates ever post, lol), it's just a friendly meeting and not a "first date."
Wow, Tarayse - that brought tears to my eyes. Having kids (twins) that have "escaped" for even five minutes and are found down the block gives me a slight understanding of what it would be like to lose a child for any extended amount of time - it's total panic and the worst of the worst thoughts enter your mind immediately! After Becky O'Connell, I just praise God SO MUCH for leading you to find this little boy - I can't imagine the overwhelming flood of emotion and relief the mother felt!!! (Btw - working at the prison, did you know a woman by the first name of Marcy? She's been there for years and years, is a guard, and a good family friend - just curious.)
Now back to the topic. Lol
Best date ever. It was just a few years ago, but I'll always remember it. I was dating a guy during the time we got the stimulus checks - he said he was putting most of it toward school lunches for his kids for the year, but was keeping some out so we could go out on a "night on the town." The works - best restaurant, finest food, dancing, etc. I thought about this for a minute, then point blank asked him how much he was planning on spending. (If you ever want to stop a guy dead in his tracks, this is a great way to do it). He stammered for a minute, then told me he had planned to spend around $300 - $400 on our big night. I told him I had a better idea. I wanted to go shopping instead. :-)
We took the money he had planned for this date and went to the second hand stores (Goodwill, Savers, etc) and bought clothes for kids from newborn on up. We had a shopping cart OVERFLOWING with clothes!! Price was under $150. We then went to WalMart and bought household items - clocks, some dishes, utensils, bath towels, sheets, etc. We spent what he had planned. Ha Ha
The next day, we went to the Children's Inn and donated everything. The Children's Inn is a safe place for women and children to go when coming out of an abusive relationship until they can get on their feet - when leaving, they are "set up" with a new household. (Many of these women don't have time to pack - they only have time to leave).
He was an E7 in the Air National Guard - military and "tough." I don't think it really hit him exactly what we were doing until we unloaded everything. He broke down crying and said he had never given like that before. I think it was probably the best date ever for both of us - I was crying, too!
Here I am, the odd duck once again. Lol. I think weddings are awesome and I never really feel alone, even when attending one by myself. I know what you mean, but I am so fortunate in life - I have a family - many don't. I have kids - many are trying but can't conceive. I have a house to live in - some live on the streets. I have enough food, I have clothes to wear, I have no disabilities, I have an education, I live in a safe town...my blessings are endless. Once in awhile I think of how nice it would be to have someone to cuddle up to, but then I remember how nice it is to not have to check with someone on what I spend, or where I'm going, or when I'll be back. I guess what I'm saying is that there is a good side to every place that God has us in. For the moment, I will rejoice in being single - that could change someday, and I know there will be times I'll miss it!! Lol
I think one of my favorites is when Jesus told Peter to go catch a fish and there would be a coin in it's mouth to pay taxes.
The fish is called a Musht fish. It's a small fish with a pouch under it's mouth. When the fish hatch, the parents keep them in this pouch to protect them for a certain amount of time. As they grow, the parents start putting pebbles in the pouch to push the fish out. They sometimes go to shallow water where they have been known to pick up shiny things - gold, diamonds, coins...
How did the coins get in the water? In Biblical times, some people wanted to give an offering in secret - they didn't want their reward from praise on earth, but in heaven. So they would toss coins into holy water when no one was looking. If they weren't by holy water, any water would do.
The miracle wasn't that a fish had a coin in it's mouth - the miracle was that it was the FIRST fish Peter caught. Peter was a fisherman and had probably heard of people catching these fish like this - although catching one with a coin was rare. I can imagine how excited he was, knowing it was going to happen!
A man is walking along when suddenly he got his foot caught in some railroad tracks. He tried to get it out, but it was really stuck in there well. He heard a noise and turned around to see a train coming. He panicked and started to pray, "God, please get my foot out of these tracks and I'll stop drinking!"
Nothing happened, it was still stuck, and the train was getting closer! He prayed again, "God, please get my foot out and I'll stop drinking AND swearing!"
Still nothing...and the train was just seconds away! He tried it one last time, "God please, if you get my foot out of the tracks, I'll quit drinking, swearing and smoking." Suddenly his foot shot out of the tracks and he was able to dive out of the way, just as the train passed. He got up, dusted himself off, looked toward Heaven and said... "Thanks anyway God, I got it myself."
After God created Adam, He told him it was not good for man to be alone. He said He would make him a companion. She would be perfect, would cater to his every need, would always laugh at his jokes, have a killer body (and wouldn't care if he let his go), be a master chef, would never mind when he wanted to play golf....but it was going to cost Adam an arm and one of his legs. Adam thought for a minute and said, "What'll you give me for a rib?"
According to Brook Zitek, DO, a forensic psychiatrist at Temple University School of Medicine in Philadelphia, one of the stalker profiles is categorized as "The incompetent." The definition is: "This person is socially backward. He doesn't really understand the social rules involved in dating and romance. He doesn't mean any harm." (I think this falls under some people we might meet on the internet.)
She went on to say that more than ONE MILLION women are stalked each year!! I'm thinking a lot of this came about with the internet - it's easy to log on and "follow" someone around. Much easier than in person - takes less effort.
She also stated, "Many people stalk someone they have only met briefly -- someone they don't really know, or barely know." (Fitting more in with the net now?) "They develop convoluted thoughts about this person. They feel this person is the answer to their dreams," says Moore.
The red flags:
* You immediately start getting several phone calls or emails right after meeting this person. (online or in person)
* The person is clingy, controlling, or upset if you want to spend time with friends and family. (or if you don't answer emails immediately)
* Tell everyone you know that this is going on -- your employer, friends, family.
* Gently but firmly tell the person you've decided to move on. Don't get drawn into discussions of why. Just say, "This situation isn't right for me" or "I'm not ready yet" -- whatever you need to say, but say it gently.
This is just another reminder to everyone - you can't be TOO CAREFUL. There is no such thing. This is the internet. Guard your personal information until you feel completely comfortable giving it out. And if there's a little twinge in the back of your mind that tells you not to, then listen to it. Don't be convinced by someone that you're being paranoid by not giving out your last name, phone number, address, or anything else personal. This is NOT paranoia, it's YOUR information and it is completely up to you WHEN OR IF you choose to give it out. It is also their choice to move along if they don't like your decision. :)
And ALWAYS, if you're going to meet someone in person, do it in a PUBLIC place, and make sure several people know exactly where you're going, who you're meeting, and what time to expect you back (and it's not a bad idea to have someone physically with you to "sit in the background" to make sure all is okay).