How To Find Love Online

Love and relationships are two things which go hand in hand and which most people certainly aspire to. The truth is that there are many people in the world who enjoy being by themselves, or prefer casual relationships. However, a great many of us want and desire that warm and fuzzy feeling and connection, as well as the companionship which ultimately comes with a relationship that works. It used to be the case that many relationships were expected to have developed through family and/or friends’ networks and introductions, at work, at random social interactions, perhaps in church and community spaces. But as the world changes and evolves, these traditional routes are becoming less and less common especially with the increasingly popular and ever expanding existence of social media and technology.

In more traditional and dare I say overly-religious societies where people view social media with suspicion, finding love online is still a taboo. It is happening everyday, but people choose to keep this quiet. I think meeting one’s significant other online may be frowned upon depending on how and what platform on which the connection happens. For example, I have found that people are more inclined to disclose finding love on social media platforms such as instagram, facebook and twitter, more than they are willing to admit being on online dating sites. And yet, these online dating websites are increasingly popular and reporting consistent annual profits from doing business successfully, around the world.

The Knot surveyed 14,000 engaged couples, and 19% of those surveyed had met their to-be-spouses online surpassing the older methods for meeting and dating including through friends (17%), from University (15%) and through work (12%). In early 2017, the online dating industry reported an incredible $3 billion, from websites and online apps. Some of the success reported is as a result of the increasingly isolated lives which we lead, the increasing economic pressures which makes people move far from family to work, which makes people work late and have less time for socialising and also in some cases, the shrinking disposable income that allows for a lot of socialising. The use of technology also makes it easy to find love online because we are already on our phones and laptops one third of our wakeful hours.

So how can one find love online? Is it worth it? What platforms can one consider and what are the pros and cons of using the internet to find love?

  • It is important to understand oneself and exactly what you are searching for in a partner. Are you looking for a fling, are you looking for a lasting partnership, are you looking to date someone and hopefully get married.
  • If you are already using Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, I am advocate of “shooting your shot” when the opportunities present themselves. There are many success stories of people “sliding into DMs” of people whom they found interesting and the rest they say is history.
  • Choose an online dating site that charges a minimal fee (or a maximum one if you can afford it). The idea is that a paying subscription based website weeds out the bad eggs and the people who are on these websites just for a laugh.
  • Do a bit of research, check for authenticity of the online dating sites, including how much traffic it receives from your location (some dating sites are more popular in some countries more than others. You want to make sure that you choose a website that is actually popular in your country/region).
  • Consider choosing an online dating website that either allows you to search for and select potential dates that you fancy, from your region/in close proximity, or an online dating site that uses some kind of psychometric patterns to match you.
  • Give yourself a timeline for meeting someone and stay open.
  • Set ground rules for yourself which will guide you as you navigate these “territories”
  • For the first three dates, it may be wise to plan dates that take place public spaces to keep yourself safe and in view of other people. Do not go in a stranger’s car.
  • Slow down on the alcohol at those first few dates, so that your inhibition is not lowered and you can react should you smell trouble.
  • After multiple dates, if you feel safe enough with your date to want to take it further, consider using protection.
  • If you can afford it, spread your bets and set up accounts on at least two online dating websites with different “love models” and metrics.

There are certain pros and cons which I consider worth looking into before one embarks upon this “venture” called online dating. The main pro I think is that once people decide to give online dating a try, chances are that they are indeed ready for something worthwhile and will give it an honest trial in a bid to successfully meet a significant other. That’s a good thing. One big con is that unfortunately, there are many “loafers” on online dating sites who are there to take advantage of people who wear their hearts on their sleeves there and are very much on it for the wrong reasons. No surprise that there has been a rise on the spread of STDs through online encounters. But this is why everyone who is genuinely on it for the right reason must have some ground rules and set boundaries to guide your interaction.

Finally, The Knot reports that people who meet online are more likely to commit to each other quickly through engagements, civil ceremonies or weddings, more so that couples who meet each other through the traditional means. Thus if you are prepared to take that plunge and meet your significant other for a happily ever after, this is your shot. Godspeed as you travel on your journey.

Wedding Blues

Source: http://www.legrc.org
Source: http://www.legrc.org

I watched Ada walk down the aisle, smiling behind her pretty veil at the tall man standing at the foot of the altar. The old church smelt of sweat and prayers, of damp and mildew, the smells of age. She stared straight ahead, walking on the hibiscus petals strewn on the church floor by the flower girls. When she arrived at the foot of the altar, Nkem took her hand and helped her up the stairs.

Ada had insisted on having our old priest who baptised all of us, officiate at the ceremony. He walked with a dignified tremble, and I worried that the chalice would fall from his hand at consecration.

“When Ada and Nkem came to see me about six months ago to discuss their intention, I thought there was something special about them. I have seen many couples in my lifetime, so I know. ” Fr. Obulu began.

I saw her smile and glance at Nkem who took her hand in his and squeezed it, and it occurred to me, as it had occasionally in the six months that they had been engaged, that my bundle of joy arriving in three months, could potentially be his’. I touched my belly, large and perfectly round, wrapped by flowing bridesmaid’s taffeta, and felt light-headed from joy and from shame all at once. So many questions came to my head; what if he turned out to look exactly like Nkem? Someone was bound to notice.

I turned away guiltily as Ada turned and smiled at me. I focused once more on Fr. Obulu’s words.

“… now allow you to speak your vows to each other.”

“I love you Nkem. I love the kindness and honesty with which we belong to each other….” Her voice shook with the intensity of her emotions.

Nkem stood there and smiled like a fastman who had just hit turkey.

I could not take it anymore, I had to speak. So I cleared my throat and raised my hand.


Word Count: 333

Written for this week’s Trifextra Writing Challenge:

This week’s word is: TURKEY

“…three successive strikes in bowling
Remember:
Your response must be between 33 and 333 words.
You must use the 3rd definition of the given word in your post.
The word itself needs to be included in your response.
You may not use a variation of the word; it needs to be exactly as stated above…”

Love Never Gets Old: Funmi and Ifeanyi Obi

I went to good old England for a bit in June with my sister. It was the John the Baptist to our trip to Istanbul (more on that soon enough). We went to the UK chiefly to be a part of my brother’s wedding to a wonderful lady. You see, Ifeanyi is not my biological brother, but we grew up together and he’s my family really and vice-versa. What a wedding! What a couple! I cannot wait for the children; seeing as she is a Doctor and he is a chartered Accountant, they will be a brilliant lot. Yes, where I am from, we bug the couple for children from the wedding day, we do not care whether they are ready or not. We are ready!

Anyi and Funmi

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He told me almost immediately after a few dates with Funmi, a stunning combination of beauty and brains. I was so happy for Ifeanyi, because if anyone deserves to be happy, it is him. He actively searched for someone to share his life with, kissed a few frogs along the way and voila, his princess appeared! She had been right under his nose all this while too. Six weeks after their first date, they packed up and went to the US for their first holiday together. After those 2 weeks, he knew! Of course he was hopelessly in love, and was ready to propose, he just needed the right time. For six months, there were no fights, no arguements! Then he jinxed it by talking about it, and the fights came; although they said it only made them stronger and more aware of how they felt about each other. I believe it was less than one year into the relationship, he bought a ring and sent me the link. Ifeanyi had it all planned out, quite the romantic. He made dinner, she arrived (believing they were just going out for the night) and he popped the question! She said yes, and the rest they say is history. I met Funmi for the first time over Christmas last year, and apart from how stunning she was, I also noticed what a warm spirit she possessed.

The hot groomsmen
The hot groomsmen
Anyi and Funmi
Anyi and Funmi
Couple's first dance
Couple’s first dance

It was a beautiful church ceremony, Funmi stepped into the church; a vision in a beautiful wedding dress that fit her like a glove. London in the last couple of days before June 29th was quite wet and miserable, but on the 29th, it was nice and warm, the sun was out. I did not need a jacket, that’s how I measured the degrees there 🙂
We travelled on to Hertfordshire for the reception. The wedding planner had done a fantastic job, the tables were all laid out, the hall beautifully accented in the colours of the day. There was a names/sitting board outside by the doors to the garden where all the guests stood around in little groups and the waiters passed out glasses of wine and Hors d’oeuvre. I found my name and checked out the names I was sitting next to, not bad! The photos were done, and we went into the reception. I sat with some familiar faces from university as my sister, my +1, had ditched me after church (full story on another day). We had rice, plantain, prawn, beef, chicken, some amazing chocolate cake, it was a feast. They had their first dance, the speeches were done and all took the floor! It was so much merrymaking! I had to drag myself off the dance floor and leave for London as we had a flight to catch to Istanbul at 6am the next morning. The party went on till 2am. What a blast!

The lovely bridesmaids
The lovely bridesmaids
Wedding party
Wedding party
Dance Dance Dance
Dance Dance Dance

Here’s wishing the lovely couple the very best in life. Nothing but the best will do xx