When Should You Take Down Your Online Dating Profile?

I’ve been dating a guy online for a month, and he brought up the idea of being exclusive, to which I agreed. At what point should I take down my dating profile? If he doesn’t take his down, would that mean that he is trying to keep his options open? I know in your eBook “Why He Disappeared” you talk about mirroring his actions–ifhe calls, answer; if he sets up a date, say yes—so if he keeps his profile up, I should keep mine up too?

I was thinking of giving it a few weeks and if it doesn’t come up, to say something along the lines of “Since we’re exclusive now does that mean I should take my profile down?” versus “I’ve noticed you still have your profile up, are you dating other people?” Or will bringing it up at all make me seem needy and jealous?



Dear Vanessa,

I tackled this question a long time ago, but yours has an extra twist that makes it unique.

So let’s go through your original letter and see if we can make sense of this together.

He brings up the idea of exclusivity, but doesn’t take his profile down: hmmm…very fishy, don’t you think? It’s like making a New Years resolution to do cardio, but refusing to ever set foot in the gym. The two things just don’t add up.

Maybe this guy needs a dictionary to clarify the term “exclusive,” but, by pretty much any standard, “exclusive” doesn’t mean logging onto Match to peruse other women.

Which is why I’m very comfortable redefining your relationship, Vanessa as “non-exclusive.” You’re just seeing a guy who’s making grand proclamations that you want to hear. And it seems to be working quite well for him. Moving on…

“Exclusive” doesn’t mean logging onto Match to peruse other women.

You want to know how the concept of “mirroring” (seen in “Why He Disappeared”) plays into online dating. You hit the nail on the head, Vanessa. If he emails you immediately, you email him back immediately. If he waits 3 days, you wait 3 days. If he asks for your phone number, give it to him with a time to call. If he follows up for a second date and you’re interested, accept. You don’t have to do anything other than what he does, which keeps your job VERY simple and crystal clear.

If he’s not doing what you want him to do, rest assured, he’s doing what HE wants to do.

And, apparently, what HE wants to do is promise exclusivity to you while continuing to look for other women online. He must think you’re a fool because, really, everyone spies on everyone in the online dating world.

I’d like to give you some earthshatteringly brilliant advice that you haven’t previously considered, but I very much like your take on things.

Keep your profile up, give him a few more weeks to step up to the plate, and go with “Since we’re exclusive now, does that mean I should take my profile down?” It’s cunning and cutting at the same time. His answer will reveal everything to you.

At which point, you can get back online to find a guy who really DOES want to commit to you. And for your own sake, please check out Finding the One Online to guide you through every step of the process. It’s everything that’s in my $2500 Romance Course for about one-tenth of the price…

More importantly, you’ll never have to have this “what should I do” feeling ever again.

Good luck.

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  1. 31

    Last year I dated a guy who wanted to be exclusive within a month and I forgot to take down my profile since I didn’t understand that Match kept charging the card and kept my profile up (even though I was never online since we were exclusive). Sure enough, 4 months in the relationship, I login to cancel my account after finding out my card was charged and out of curiosity looked up his profile…he was not only active within 1 hour but changed his profile completely!! Sure enough one or two weeks after asking him if he was taking his profile down (in a nice joking way stating how I forgot too), he dumped me. I hear there are guys out there trying to get as many women as possible exclusive while staying online. And I am one of them! Be careful. Although I am also proof that people who don’t understand match don’t take the profile down by mistake. In my case it depended on the profile being updated, not so much when someone is online. Good luck!

  2. 32

    I feel like we are all dating the same guy. I started seeing a guy I met on okcupid. He was prince charming and asked me to be exclusive with him also after a month. Although I thought it was fast I agreed. He told me that he deleted his profile I didn’t even have to ask!! I could not believe what an amazing guy I had. I told him I deleted mine too. About a week later a friend on the site told me she found him on there. I asked him about it very nicely and told me he did delete but signed back on because I never actually asked him to delete it. He manipulated me into hanging out with him the next day. We discussed it again and said that he was upset that my friend even saw that and he never wanted to talk about it again. He swore to God he would take it down as soon as he got home. I waited 24 hours he was still on and ACTIVE. I vowed never to speak to him again. I didn’t bring it up I just left it alone. He didnt contact me for about 4 days. By then I decided to rejoin the site within ten minutes he had viewed my profile and sent me a message! Saying that I was still on the site! I couldn’t believe he has the audacity to even send me a message. I didn’t answer him. Since then he has viewed my profile again. He tried to pull the whole do you have trust issues but I don’t believe it has anything to do with trust. It has to do with respect. In a relationship a person should respect what makes their partner feel uncomfortable rather than use it to their advantage. I have no problem with a boyfriend looking at maxim but to be “available” on a dating site is just plan disrespectful. Oh and one last thing, a dear friend told me “okay so you finally nag him to get off what makes you think he’s not going to join another site?” She had a point, I’m not going to waste my precious time lookin at every site to see if he’s on. Don’t even bother giving them an explanation why you’re not talking to them just keep the train moving and never look back.

  3. 33

    @Nicole/Chris/Molly/Julia/Kate : You all were dating the same guy. A guy with an avoidant attachment style. Some people fundamentally are unable to attach to another person; this style occurs in about 25% of the population (in men and women, mind you, essentially equally). He distanced himself as soon as you were attached. He has been this way, all his life, most likely (only 30% change their attachment style throughout life). Read ‘Attached,’ by Dr. Amir Levine. Best book on relationships to date. Hands down. Also has excellent chapters on effective communication. Author is a physician (as am I) and his book is nothing short of priceless.

  4. 34

    If an online profile is hidden, you can still search for other women/men. It’s very sneaky, I know because it’s being done to me and it’s been a year since we’ve been going together.

  5. 35

    That is a great tip particularly to those new to the blogosphere.
    Simple but very accurate information… Thanks for sharing this one.
    A must read article!

  6. 36

    This guy I have recently met brought up exclusivity after a month. He said he would take down his pictures on his dating profile, after I mentioned I guess we should go offline then. I saw that he had done that but when I spoke to him about taking the profile down. I met the whole profile, not just the pictures.

    He has a Spanish background so might have to be a bit more clearer in what I meant by that. I definitely have not taken my profile or pics down. I won’t till I see he takes his full profile down. It is definitely worth mirroring what they do while dating. You notice how genuine or not they are when you do.

    Still looking closely at how he acts. Don’t want to be fooled by words. Glad I am not going blindly into it and easing into things.

  7. 37

    well I am MARRIED with a 9 month old and just discovered my husband’s POF profile still active that he was still accessing even a week before I gave birth. So he can’t say he “forgot” to delete it. We’ve been married 2 years.  It’s still active!  I’ve yet to approach him about it.

  8. 38

    And he told me he’s never participated in online dating

  9. 39

    This “Are you taking down your profile?” conversation is similar to the “What are you looking for in a relationship?” conversation or a “Sooo, are you dating anyone else?” conversation. As a result, it’s important to tread carefully while using excellent communication.

  10. 40

    I’m currently seeing a young lady. We met off of tinder. It’s been about a month. In my humble opinion after a few dates and a declaration that I am taking down my profile and you don’t: Someone isn’t as into the other person.  It’s too easy too meet people and start other relationships or flings. If you like someone you meet off of one of these apps or sites give them a shot after a few dates take yours down or disable it, you can always make a new one. Because it is true everyone spies on everyone. The young lady I’m speaking about is still on tinder. I feel slighted and a bit like she is definitely dating other dudes. I have declared feelings but it feels as if it were for not when i see her profile up.  i see it as a waste of time to keep dating with such uncertainty looming. Maybe i’m too sensitive or just plain naive. But I am not new to online dating and this just seems like i am being used or played with.

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