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Syger's avatar

What's the proper etiquette for online dating when multiple people show interest in you?

Asked by Syger (1384 points ) July 10th, 2011

Long story short I made an account on a dating site to meet people that I might not run into in my day-to-day life. First day my profile is set up I had roughly 4 or 5 girls sending me messages seeming rather interested; two of which I had messaged first.
I personally feel that kissing/making out is the sort of thing that “seals the deal” of being together/exclusive so I’ve been friendly in replying but I don’t want to be leading anyone on or potentially “cheating.”

I don’t want to just stop talking to all but one of them, but I don’t want to be a player either. I figured I’d try to get out once or twice with them before deciding if I wanted to pursue a relationship with any of them, but that puts me in the moral dilemma of “Is that cheating (in the eyes of the general people)?” Or am I already in the wrong? :(

I get the feeling I worded what I want to ask horribly, but hopefully someone can rephrase it better or gets what I mean, as always I’m happy answer questions too

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14 Answers

nikipedia's avatar

I don’t think anyone expects exclusivity before the first date. You’re in the clear. If you feel weird about it, bring it up on date 1 or 2, and say you’re dating other people and you’re wondering what your date’s expectations are.

Syger's avatar

I definitely would like to bring it up and at least make sure they knew; but I have no idea how to go about it without sounding like a total douche bag. :| “Oh hay, there’s a few other women interested in me that I’ve been talking to btw.” Phrased nicer, obviously but that’s the only way I can see it being interpreted.

chyna's avatar

I think it is understood that by using a dating site you are seeking potential dates for possible long term commitment. You can’t determine that just by a few emails, you will have to meet them. They are probably meeting more than one person also. I’m not sure why or even how you would bring it up. During your first date? That would make it look like the date is not going well and you planning your “out”. Before the date? Same thing. It would sound like you are saying “if this date doesn’t go well, remember, you’ve been warned that I’m checking out others.” I would think at the point that you have met someone that you are interested in, then tell the others that you have met someone.

Pied_Pfeffer's avatar

As a female former member of an online dating site, I did not expect exclusivity until it was agreed upon. In my experience, it takes more than two dates and a make-out session for this topic to come up.

plethora's avatar

@chyna is right. Both parties on a dating site are entertaining more than one opportunity. It takes at least a couple of dates to have the slightest idea whether you want to continue to see them. Be fully present when you are on a date, but be truthful with the ones you don’t want to see further, and narrow it down to one.

filmfann's avatar

It’s true. While you can chat with many at the same time, it’s inappropriate to yiff with more than one at a time. Unless they are aware of it, I guess.

Syger's avatar

Thank you, all. I feel a lot better about the whole thing now. :)

trickface's avatar

I’ve always thought that as long as you are on any dating site, you’re a player and dating multiple people until you remove yourself from dating site.

SpatzieLover's avatar

Until you know what your chemistry with these girls is like with any of these girls, don’t short yourself by becoming exclusive too soon.

I think it’s understood if you’re on a dating site, you will be dating.

Give the two or three of those you find interesting a real shot.

Your_Majesty's avatar

I will say date each of them as a friend and see who is your match. Even after you have one of them as gf you can still BEFRIEND other girls from the same site (announce your status and refuse to go any further than friendship). In case your relationship goes awry with this one you will have the chance to be with other girls. There’s nothing wrong with being resourceful today and it’s not wrong at all to befriend people from dating sites, most people start it from friendship anyway.

quiddidyquestions's avatar

Mostly related- Please make sure you’re upfront with these girls that you believe kissing/making out makes things exclusive. In my dating experience, that belief is not widely held, and you might be setting yourself up for heartbreak and the ladies you date up for wondering what the heck you’re thinking.

Syger's avatar

@quiddidyquestions I definitely would ask after making out or whatever “So does this mean we’re exclusive?” or something to that effect. It’s not something I would just assume, especially after meeting them on a dating site where just being a girl attracts tons of people as is.
@trickface I’m sorry you feel that way?

quiddidyquestions's avatar

@Syger I’d suggest you have the talk first. As a woman, I’d be seriously weirded out if a guy and I got hot and heavy on a date then he asked if he was my boyfriend. I would want to know up front that the guy takes physical contact very seriously, so I could make an informed decision before the action. but that’s just me.

trickface's avatar

@Syger Don’t be sorry. I’m not mad or upset :)

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