Why Do I Hit Home Runs in Person Yet Strike Out Online?

Why Do I Hit Home Runs in Person Yet Strike Out Online?

I’m 32, recently single and am looking forward to being back in the dating scene. I’ve tried the major online dating site in the past using a three month subscription. Anyway I noticed that online, I got few responses from men. And I don’t mean few responses from guys who match what I’m after. Just few responses in general. (Yes, my profile was visible and showed up in searches) I had my best recent clear headshot, plus a few good photos and a recent full body shot. I have what I thought was a genuine profile that highlights the things that make me stand out and I believed my words came across as witty, smart, and sincere. Not the usual “I like to go shopping, go to the gym, and hanging with friends”, yada yada yada.

Now while I was doing the online thing….I also went out to singles events after work. The strange thing is I easily met men and was asked out regularly when I went to singles events. But online it was dismal. I emailed dozens of guys with brief messages where I tried to be witty and show I read their profile in detail (like you advise!) and little resulted. I emailed younger guys, older guys, guys far away, guys nearby, skinny guys, heavier guys, etc….and never even got far enough in email exchange to get to the “talk on the phone” stage in three months. I even switched my photos periodically.

Obviously I’m sticking with the singles events because my results are much better. But I can’t help but wonder….how can I hit home runs in person yet strike out online? You’d think it happens the other way around. I also live in the NYC area, and I’ve seen many female profiles where they are “model” looking women with pictures flaunting their “assets”. Short of me putting on a sexy black dress and heels for my body shot, I’m perplexed about why this is happening. I’ve apparently got good looks and charm in person, but apparently not online. What gives?


Dear Sara,

The good things about singles events: alcohol, hanging out with friends, dressing up, excitement, music, live conversation, the possibility of “chemistry”.

The good things about online dating: inexpensive, any time of day, no need to go out, ability to market yourself and screen anonymously, ability to search, filter, and get to know people before the date, unprecedented access to members of the opposite sex all over the world.

Online dating creates far more access to singles with far more competition. Real life provides far less access to singles with far less competition.

But, as far as I’m concerned, the main difference between “real life” and online dating is this: Online dating creates far more access to singles with far more competition. Real life provides far less access to singles with far less competition.

Look around, you’ll see.

Go to a bar and there may be three cute guys in the entire place. Go online and you’ll probably find dozens within twenty miles of your home. And for the same cost as a night out on the town, on Match.com you can conceivably talk to ALL of these guys to see who is the right fit. Is it any surprise that people choose to take the online route?

But the better way for you to see the difference between online dating and offline dating is through the eyes of a man. For the sake of this exercise, let’s call this man “Evan”….

Now, Evan is a decent guy – not a Casanova, but not a complete dork either. He is confident in his conversational abilities and relatively comfortable with his looks, but has never felt too comfortable approaching total strangers. Each time he goes out with his buddies, he blows $50 and, half the time, he doesn’t even have the courage to talk to the most attractive women. Then he discovers online dating.

Because he’s verbal, he finds this medium particularly suited to him. The same women he couldn’t approach at the bar write back to him online. Eventually, he wonders why he would ever go to a bar again. And, although he’s loathe to admit it, online dating has turned him into something he never thought he’d be – a serial dater. It’s so easy to get a phone number, a date, a one-night stand – that it’s hard to get off the conveyor belt of options. After all, there’s always someone cuter, someone younger, someone smarter, someone newer.

Now if an average dude like Evan feels that he has the power to land the cream of the crop online, why would he ever write to anyone else? That’s right. He wouldn’t.

Now if an average dude like Evan feels that he has the power to land the cream of the crop online, why would he ever write to anyone else? That’s right. He wouldn’t. But that’s just one guy’s story. Here’s a far more common one that will really bring the point home:

Paul is 41 and wants to be married and have a family. So first of all, Paul is going to write to women between the ages of 25-35. It’s not that he has anything against 36-year-old women, but why should he have to feel rushed into having kids? Oh, yeah, Paul’s also looking for someone whom he could see himself sleeping with for the rest of his life. So he’s gonna start at the top, writing to models completely out of his league, one after the other… You know why? Because HE CAN. Because they’re THERE. Because even though he hasn’t heard back from a single one of them, why would he possibly write to someone who is slightly above average? After all, he can still entertain the illusion that he can get someone out of his league.

Put Paul in a bar and, like Evan, he’s going to feel lucky to talk to ANYBODY who smiles at him. And, much to his surprise, Paul may find himself enjoying the company of the woman standing next to him at the bar. She may not have been the hottest woman in the place, but she was open to meeting him, she had the best smile, and the quickest sense of humor. You can be sure Paul is getting her number at the end of the night. Yet he never would have asked her out online. Too much competition, too many options.

And lest the point be lost in all this talk about selective men, this phenomenon is even MORE pronounced with women. Think about it this way, guys. At a bar, when you have a great conversation with a woman, you can probably get a phone number. She may get hit on a few more times that night, but you just have to be the top candidate among four or five guys. That same woman online may have HUNDREDS of suitors approaching her each day. You haven’t seen competition until you’ve peeked into the online account of an attractive 25-35 year old woman.

Therefore, Sara, your diagnosis is right on. Certain people will acquit themselves better in person because they get marginalized by the very nature of online dating. Overweight women, short men, older people are among those who have it the roughest. In real life, their charms outweigh their shortcomings. Yet online, they’re easily overlooked because everyone has the PERCEPTION of choice, and goddamnit, they’re going to exercise it.

Join our conversation (41 Comments).
Click Here To Leave Your Comment Below.


  1. 1

    If you aren’t getting any responses at all, you might want to consider having your friends (especially male ones) read your profile. Some women have unintentionally included things in their online dating profile that will turn men off such as negativity (I don’t speak to men under 5’10), a list of too many specific requirements (especially financial ones), or having unflattering pictures. I haven’t seen your profile, so I have no idea if any of these issues apply to you, but if you are not getting any responses and are attractive enough to get hit on in person you might want to have a friend review your profile.

    Best of luck to you

  2. 2

    Man ..this is Evan’s expertise as you can see he nails it. For many years I’ve done better in person at clubs & singles events than I had online. Even going so far as to actually put IN my profile..(as a take off of what most people put)”tired of the online dating scene I’m going back to the bar where I actually meet people”…lol (and don’t care if they look like some blury pic from 4 yrs and 30 lbs ago)because I know what they look like RIGHT HERE & NOW.

    Again…every woman in a club ISN’T on some website getting tons of responses every day thank god !! I found myself saying “I’d never get near this woman if she was on an online site,yet here I am getting her number and going on a date with her within 2 days” almost impossible to do online.

    All in all it has been “evening out” though. I met a woman last night that looked better than her online photos and we had a great time.

    I do think it’s weird Sara that you do better in person than online of course the only way for us to figure it out for sure is to meet you in person and see your online profile and maybe find som incongruences. Evan will have to make a house call for that one ….LOL

  3. 3

    A couple of things stood out to me…
    I think Evan’s email was a bit too general and lacking in specifics that will help you. Having read evan’s books, my suggestions…

    — THREE MONTHS to get to ‘talk on the phone’?! You should be talking on the phone and going out for coffee after the third email. That is, one of you should ask the other out in the third email. Preferably 1 week after you started talking, but 2-3 weeks max. THREE MONTHS is just setting up both of you for a colossal waste of time when there is no chemistry in person.

    — Men really do focus on the photo. And (if they are smart) they learn to focus on the WORST photo. A couple of really good photos is plenty. If you have several, one of them may make you look bad and cause him not to respond.


  4. 4

    Posting a URL to your online dating so we can give constructive criticism sound like a fun ( for us ) exercise even though it has the potential to be scary ( for you ).

  5. 5

    It’s possible Sara has something in her profile that selects her out right off the bat from most searches. On match, when I do a search, I will only select ‘slender’ and ‘athletic’ as body types. So, if Sara has ‘average’ as her body type, she won’t even show up in my search, even though she might be totally hot in real life.

    That’s the first thing I would look at. Serious online daters don’t browse every single profile in a large city…they’ll drill down to what they’re typically attracted to, such as body type, age range, height range, race, smoking pref, and a few others.

    Also, if she wants to get some traffic, she should view a bunch of men’s profiles that she likes. This is the equivalent of a ‘wink’ without doing the wink. Savvy online daters will almost always check out your profile if you’ve checked out theirs. This is actually how I get most of my online dates, when I was doing the online dating thing.

  6. 6

    I thought Evan’s answer was great and there isn’t too much that can be added to his comments.

    My thoughts on this echo what Ben wrote about the photograph. I think men look more at the photograph than anything else. At a bar, the atmosphere is different. He may have had a few drinks, there are not too many women who look open to conversation. He may give a chance to a woman he would exclude online simply because she was warm and friendly. A nice smile in person can do wonders Evan put it well.

    Evan made some good points about the online system working better for men who are good writers. I know a man well who won’t bother with online because he’s the kind of guy that doesn’t care about rejection. His self esteem is enormously high, and he cleans up at a bar scene. Why? Because he represents the small portion of men who aren’t afraid of being rejected. He’s told me that he’ll sit with a group of friends – and he’s the only one in 5 or 6 guys who would dare to approach an attractive woman. Although he’s no better looking that the others, he gets a chance with women there because the others don’t even try. He acknowledges that maybe only 1 in 10 women will give him a number, but he doesn’t mind the rejection process. It works for him in the end. His advice to his friends is always to just approach a woman, and not let it get to you if they are uninterested. By the way, his shy friends generally end up single for years.

    Another thing is (and this in no way applies to the original poster), is that some men feel more comfortable approaching women live if they are average looking. The men assume this woman won’t reject him so quickly. Another thing my friend has noted is that at dance clubs, the very best looking women tend to have a boyfriend. This means that after trying to talk to them and getting rejected, he’ll move on to the less attractive women, in the hopes of getting a future date.

    On the other hand, a man can approach beautiful women online as it is anonymous and not face to face. This means he doesn’t need (in his mind) to take rejection really personally. Online, now that he CAN approach beautiful women, he will. He won’t bother approaching the average women online unless he gets no response for a long time.

  7. 7

    The funny thing about what Li-Ann said about her friend was. I find myself after being rejected online by the women I’m really interested in, emailing women I’m not EVEN interested in just to see if they’ll respond to me. Thus I’m actually qualifying myself to women who if they walked by me in a club I know for sure I wouldn’t even notice them.

    I also put up a recon profile of a guy who’s about an 8 or 9 in the 4 pics with all the same basics as me and a profile that says basically NOTHING, all he can do is “wink” and not reply and he gets about 70% response to his wink and 3 sentence generic say nothing profile. Why ladies ??? Because he’s CUTE !!
    Women will even email him 3 times without a response back !!
    Btw ladies…don’t ever email a man and say “You’re hot !!”…lol
    Your value will plummet …lol unless you’re “hotter” …LOL

  8. 8

    Regarding Ben’s post…..I recall Evan mentioning that meeting for a drink might be better than coffee…..always meet my dates for a drink!! I may suggest a franchise that also serves lunch or dinner. Then if we are connecting we can spend time breaking bread together.

    That said, online “dating” is like having a part-time job but the efforts can be worth their weight in gold. Embarking upon my 1st online year and have had some great dates. Nothing long term yet. Was once told a lady has to kiss a lot of toads before her prince comes along.

  9. 9

    Oy……it sounds like the Neanderthals had it better.

    True, the women didn’t shave, but you didn’t have the bar scene or the online dating thing. You just threw a stack of food on the ground and grunted.

    Women today just aren’t impressed by grunting.

    1. 9.1

      You had me at grunting and food!

  10. 10

    Sara –

    I would actually take it as a complement that you hit home runs in person, and I wouldn’t worry so much that you strike out online.

    At least that is how I would feel.

    Imagine how you’d feel if the opposite were true: You could get plenty of dates from men who read your profile online, exchanged a few emails with you, and saw a static (and often unreprestational photo of you), but could not rustle up a man in person if your life depended on it! Now that would really keep you awake at night.

    So, you’re a sexy, charming, vivacious woman in person who men cannot resist. Feel good about that. There are people in the world who have REAL problems. Like blindness, cancer, bankruptcy, poverty….you get the message.

  11. 11

    Sorry about the typos. I was in a hurry…

  12. 12


    You say that your male friend “absolutely cleans up” at the bar scene. Then you go on to say that your friend admits he only gets about 1 phone number for every 10 women he approaches.

    Let’s do the math here. He would have to approach on average 50 women in one night just to get 5 phone numbers.

    LOL. It’s extremely unlikely you’re friend “cleans up” at the bar. Unless you call getting 2 or 3 phone numbers “cleaning up.” Because there is no enough time for a man to approach 30 women in one night at a bar (and speak to them long enough to ask for a phone number), and he’d have to do that just to get 3 measly numbers.

    No offense, but either you are or friend are full of it.

  13. 13


    Did I miss something in her mail where she said something about 3 months?

    1. 13.1

      Markus, I wondered about that too. I think Ben misread her post. She said in the three months (she’d been online) she’d never even gotten to the point of a phone call (and other examples). Because of the way she worded it, he read that as she wanted to take three months to get to the phone call..

  14. 14

    Ron: How many numbers do you get when you go to the bars? None?

    Getting 1 in 10 numbers is a poor closing rate compared to guys who are experienced with getting numbers (ie players), but it’s tons better than the chode who sits in the corner nursing a drink, or worse, the guy who stays at home.

    My guess is Li-Ann’s friend doesn’t have good training or good technique, but he does possess the one quality that blows everyone else away: guts. Plus, he doesn’t mind rejection, which means he’s internally validated and doesn’t get emotionally affected by outcomes. Again, positive qualities.

  15. 15

    Ron Feb 18th 2008 at 08:39 pm 13
    You say that your male friend absolutely cleans up at the bar scene. Then you go on to say that your friend admits he only gets about 1 phone number for every 10 women he approaches.

    I don’t think it is necessary to be pedantic about using slang phrases like “absolutely cleans up” with precision. Her point was that her average looking friend does much better with women than other average looking men because he doesn’t let an aversion to being turned down prevent him from approaching women in the first place.

    I think the term “much better” is justified as she mentioned that it can take this man’s friends months, if at all, to make a connection with a woman of their choice while this guy regularly does so. 1 is much more than zero.


  16. 16

    Aside from the less flattering aspects of human nature already described to explain Sara’s situation there is the phenomenon of technically accurate pictures and descriptions failing to covey essential, vital aspects of people.

    Some things will just not come through a picture or a block of text that shine through in person….even without alcohol or other things.

    The whole is greater than the sum of the parts.

    I agree, be happy that it all works for you in person. That is how it is supposed to be. Going out and meeting people in person is the real thing. It is having a life.

    Online dating is a poor substitute.

  17. 17
    Michael Ejercito

    Some women have unintentionally included things in their online dating profile that will turn men off such as negativity. I myself have read negativity from women’s profiles. Here are some quotes from one woman’s profile.

    “Listen up boys, I am not intrested in having a sexual enconter, activity partner (I already have a personal trainer)or a one night stand, blah blah blah. It doesn’t impress me and I don’t care that you’re a millionare or the next top Calvin klein model or the next best thing since Bill Gates!!! If you are married, go talk to your wife. Not rude just straight forward, love it or leave it! If I don’t or haven’t responded to your e-mail, it’s nothing personal…Have a beautiful day and good luck! Oh, and if drinking is one of your hobbies, be sure to pass on e-mailing me!”

    I wonder what Evan’s opinion is on this profile.

  18. 18

    Online dating is a conundrum. Evan nails a fastball right down the middle with his description of the problem (95% of the people competing for 5% of the opposite sex – plus that 5% keeps getting replenished, giving the illusion of unlimited football-loving swimsuit models).

    What you can do as a member of the other 95%? The same thing every marketer in the world does – test, test, test!

    Take a new photo. Write a new blurb and headline. Try a new “angle.” You will be surprised how you can vary your profile and still be you. As a demonstration, back when I online-dated, I initially was underwhelmed with my response – until I finally hit on the right words and pictures – and how! (It peaked with an unsolicited response from an actual former model in LA, who also happened to be smart and funny and even paid for my hotel room when we met for the first time…I am not making this up.)

    So if it’s not working, try something different – oh, and play in the “big ponds” like Match and Yahoo Personals where the sheer numbers work in your favor.

    As with everything, it’s never about “just being you,” it’s about “being the BEST you.”

  19. 19

    Ron, you seem like a nice guy, but its way too early for you to already tell me I’m full of it. That’s a pretty direct comment.

    Clean up is too strong a word, and that’s my fault for the wording. What my friend means is he actually gets a phone number, vs. going home with nothing at all. He might get just one number a night. That might mean just 3 or 4 numbers in a month of going out Friday nights. But his friends don’t get any. So he’s pretty happy with that. I’ve seen at least three of his girl friends since I’ve known him and they’ve all been beautiful girls on the 9 scale. He’s no better looking than his friends, and has an average income. However, they’re all still looking and getting frustrated and he’s pretty satisfied. So maybe it sounds like a lot of work and rejection to approach 10 to get one number, but he is not complaining. And 10 to 1 was his estimate – he doesn’t actually count and keep a list while he’s out there. So he may be off a bit. The bottom line is that he gets to date women he is interested in.

  20. 20
    Kat Wilder

    Have to run with something Michael Ejercito wrote about the posting with negativity: I don’t find much negative (OK, a little) in the posting excerpt you include here. I actually find a bit of humor, and humor is often hard to get across in such a static medium as the Internet (that’s why we often rely on emoticons when we want to make sure what we’re saying is taken with a twinkle in our eye).

    Is it better to say all the things she wants tall, dark, handsome, interesting, self-aware… etc. or lay out the few deal-breakers? and, you know, being married and boozers are real deal-breakers!

    I don’t like her “OK boys” or the “If I don’t or haven’t responded to your e-mail, it’s nothing personal” comments; they reek of a bit of an attitude.

    But many people don’t know how to write a good profile because we’re afraid of coming off egotistical or we write what we think will attract others (and not who we really are) or … and this is the worst … we don’t really know ourselves all that well. All that said, the photos are the No. 1 draw, and if you’re not posting flattering (but accurate!) pics, you are lost in the sea.

  21. 21

    ……sweetie, it is that powerful physical feminine presence of yours that makes a diffrence!…………..

  22. 22

    Hey its me the original poster. Just to answer a few questions some of you have raised….I have a positive profile. No negativity or complaining or requirements at all.

    I wear a size 8 so I’m not overweight. But I’m not a size 4 either.

    I did change my body type from Average to Athletic because I saw that my short and overweight friend called herself Average. I saw that alot of the guys who are “athletic” are really average too. But switching to “athletic” didn’t really help much with the responses.

    I guess I have to say I must not be as gorgeous as the competition online. I always rated myself a solid 7 when I’m in a dress, makeup and heels because I can turn a some heads when I’m out. Hell maybe even a 7.5 on a good night. But no way am I the sexy knockout that men are prioritizing. I’m the girl next door type. Which I’m ok with. Evan and the other posters have some great points. I still find the whole online dating experience not right for me….I thought the point was to use it to get to a date and then figure out if the chemistry/attraction was there. But I’m clearly lost in the shuffle on Match.

    Fortunately, yes I am glad I come across better in person. So I’ll keep rocking it on my own.

    Thanks for the advice!

    1. 22.1

      Glad you wrote back in, Sara, and just wanted to say well done for doing so well in person! In person is where you make a solid connection, in person is where you date, fall in love, form a relationship etc….the online modality is just a tool to get there. So maybe look at it as a good thing and be happy you can make such a great impression with people.

      I’m the opposite. I get a LOT of attention online (my photos are great and I’m fantastic at writing), but don’t find I do as well in person. At the end of the day, I get a lot of dates (most of which don’t turn into anything more than 1 or 2 dates), whereas while you may get fewer dates overall, it sounds like you will have no trouble finding a relationship. Maybe it’s a warmth thing, a confidence issue, I’m not sure…or maybe because of my profession I end up becoming a sounding board/counsellor for them (I’m in that type of field), and it kills the ‘chemistry’ (soooo many guys I meet are hung up on chemistry  – wish they’d read this blog!).

      One tip I gave another friend who was writing to guys and getting very few responses – make sure your initial contact is light, cheeky and playful. Not sure if you’re doing this, but my friend was writing these earnest and heavy (read: boring) first emails. That’s not the way to go. Just write something that begs them to respond, that’s cute and funny (nothing full on or too wordy) and you may find you have a better online experience that gets you to the all important in person meeting.

      In the meantime, if you want to coach me on being great ‘in person’ I’m all ears!! hehe.


  23. 23
    Michael Ejercito

    I wear a size 8 so I’m not overweight. But I’m not a size 4 either.

    Who are these men that consider size 8 overweight? Are they anorexic?

  24. 24

    To evan,

    …so, are you related to Alan Katz?

  25. pingback
  26. 25

    Same problem… I am extremely good looking and have no trouble turning heads in person.  Online, I still get plenty of messages, don’t get me wrong, but the guys I write to NEVER write back and the ones that write to me aren’t necessarily what I’m looking for.  I do really well with either men who are completely uneducated OR men who are recently separated/divorced and are looking for a replacement wife (emotionally unavailable).  I have no doubt, though, that if one of those handsome Jewish doctors/lawyers that I write to online – the kind either without kids, with only 1 kid, with a final divorce – would go out with me if they met me in person first.

    But… I have kids.  And online, no matter how good looking I am, that’s a turnoff.  Especially for the men that EVERY woman wants to date.  For me, that’s the biggest challenge of online dating.  I don’t really have time (or the right social network) to easily meet men in person.  My friends are all married.  And I don’t date where I work, so online is my best option.  But it is frustrating and disappointing because people are so demanding that they overlook people who would be good matches in real life.

    1. 25.1
      Karmic Equation

      There’s gotta be OLD sites for single parents, have you tried those?

      Also, perhaps you need to try to limit contacting other single parents in the OLD sites you’re already on.

      I know it’s tougher for female single parents than male since most times, women have primary custody and it’s harder for them to schedule dates.

      Best of luck to you.

    2. 25.2

      How about single parents meetup groups?  Any near you?  I always thought that if I were a single mom, I’d give it a shot.  I know you said you don’t have much time to easily meet men in person, but maybe groups like that (considering who they’re catering to) would be more conducive to your schedule.

      I might not be a single parent but I went through a lot of online dating frustration as well, before meeting my boyfriend online.  However, if it’s any consolation, the men who turn you down aren’t always as great as they seem and you’re not missing out on much by not dating them!  I’ve dated a lot of those types you’ve written to–and just take my word for it that they weren’t nearly as good in real life as they were “on paper”.

      1. 25.2.1

        I tried a single parents dating site and I wasn’t really meeting educated, successful, Jewish single men under 50.  I can’t compromise on certain things – just because I have kids doesn’t mean I should have to settle and date a guy that I am not attracted to (very overweight, not looking for an Adonis, but honestly I am a size 4-6 hourglass shape,  34C, great legs) or doesn’t have a college degree (I have a professional degree, support myself, own a home).

        I honestly think part of my problem is my age.  I am only in my mid-30s – too old to attract men who want children, too young for men that are interested in me.  I am quite popular with overweight and unattractive men who are 50+ with kids in their twenties or uneducated men with entry level-type jobs.  Both groups are thrilled with the idea of an attractive, successful 30-something mom.  If I hear from an attractive, successful divorced guy, he almost always is separated, lying about being divorced but is actually separated, or still loaded with divorce baggage that he simply cannot overcome (rebounders too).  Even worse, some the these ugly, overweight guys in their 40s are having so much success with women that wouldn’t have looked at them 10 years ago but for the scarcity of decent men willing got date then due to age think they are God’s gift to women!  I even had two extremely unattractive men tell me that they almost didn’t email me because I have more than 1 kid, but they messaged me because I am beautiful.  Come on!  Just because I am a mother doesn’t make me unworthy of male attention!

        The attractive, successful emotionally healthy divorced guys are (1) few and far between, (2)  often into much younger women without kids, (3) the catches everyone wants, so they get snatched up fast, and/or (4) reliving their youth.

        As far as single parent groups, I am not aware of any.  I live in the suburbs, land of married people.  And, in the nearest city, the residents are primarily single and young.

        I am honestly at a loss, feeling very discouraged.

        1. Karmic Equation

          I can understand about attraction, so fat balding guys are def out for most women 🙂

          However, have you considered that limiting your dating only to Jewish men is severely limiting your dating pool?

          Being a single-mom, no matter how beautiful, already limits your dating pool. Then you add in higher education level and who make as much money as you, and you’re asking a lot of any guy. Your beauty is not going to outweigh the downside of dating a single mom.

          Men who make that much, who have higher education, and are attractive are going to prefer to start their own families fresh.

          I think the requirement you should relax is the Jewish one first. If you’re still struggling you might have to relax the “money” or “education” one. Truth be told a guy who makes more money or has a higher education doesn’t correlate to making him a better partner or stepfather.

        2. L

          I can’t relax the Jewish thing.  A Jewish home is important to me and I can’t ask someone to convert for me.

          I also don’t expect anyone to make more money than me of even to make as much as me.  If that were the case, I really would be alone forever.  Guys in those income brackets aren’t interested in me.  While I would like to date a lawyer, for example, I am not looking for a high powered one.  I am perfectly content to date one that works for the government and is not a high earner.  Similarly, I’m interested in dating a doctor, but he doesn’t have to be a neurosurgeon.  I’m open to dating college professors, policy wonks, consultants, engineers… All sorts of middle income professions.  I like successful men – I am surrounded by them every day in the workplace.

          That said, I do get what you are saying. But it bothers me that I have to compromise so much.  A guy in my shoes would NOT have to do that.  Plenty of attractive, successful women in their mid-thirties would love to date an attractive and successful guy my age with kids.  But because I am a woman, I feel like I have to date down.

        3. Christine

          I’m just wondering, how important is it that he be Jewish?  The reason I ask is that a couple of times now you’ve stated that you’re looking for successful, educated Jewish men so I’m wondering what criterion is most important to you (i.e. is it okay if he’s a successful, educated non-Jew?)  Perhaps try dating sites that are geared towards Jewish people, if it’s that important?

          I’m scratching my head trying to figure out what the issue is.  I’m not sure it’s necessarily your age because I’ve dated a lot of educated Jewish men before, and I’m also in my mid-30s (and dated about equal numbers of them in both my early and mid-30s before meeting my boyfriend).  I met these men both in online dating, and at alumni events for my alma mater.  And some of these Jewish men told me how they had dated single mothers before me so I don’t think they necessarily were limiting themselves to childless women (heck, one of them went on and on about a hot single mother in her 40s he dated). So I do think it’s possible for you when other women with your same age and/or single parent status have somehow done it.

          If anything, I was surprised that these men wanted to date an Asian Catholic like me.  I had initially thought they’d want a Jewish woman they’d have more in common with (well, I turned out to be right that we weren’t compatible–now I’m happier dating another Asian Catholic).  So sorry you’re going through this but hang in there!

        4. Karmic Equation

          Whoa there, L.

          “But because I am a woman, I feel like I have to date down.”

          Uhh. So what you’re saying it’s that it’s ok for successful MEN to “date down” but not for successful women to do the same?

          So a neurosurgeon who marries a kindergarten teacher is marrying DOWN? I would think those kindergarten teachers have something to say about that.

          A lawyer marrying a secretary is “marrying down”? I was a secretary once upon a time. I wouldn’t have considered ANY MAN who dated me to be “dating down”. He was LUCKY to get my love and devotion!


          That kind of thinking comes across as pretty snotty.

          Quality men won’t date hypergamous women if they can avoid it. And you’re being a snob to all those women whose husbands “married down” to them.


        5. jeremy

          L, there are many definitions of hypergamy.  In this context, it is the fact that  many women consider a man’s income (and “ambition” as a proxy of ability to generate future income) to be sexual attractants.  I think that Karmic’s point was that, to most men, a woman’s income is quite irrelevant to the issue of sexual attraction.  The male doctor who marries his secretary does not see himself as “marrying down”.   Whereas the female lawyer who marries a man who is less successful DOES consider herself as “marrying down”, and consoles herself with the idea that at least if he has “ambition” then perhaps he might end up earning more in the future.


          Men, generally, don’t mind earning more than their wives, and take PRIDE in supporting them.  Women, generally, hate earning more than their husbands, and DREAD the prospect that they might have to support a man.  They may elect to be with men who make less, but the greater the imbalance, the greater the perception of settling.  That is the meaning of hypergamy in this context.


          All that aside, the demographic of men that you are looking for are mature, intelligent, and successful.  Men like that are looking for a woman who accepts them as they are – and ADMIRES them as they are.  They are not looking for a woman who evaluates their “ambition” to be better than they are now.  A woman who ego-invests her sexuality in her income/education can not admire a man who earns less than her or has less education than her.  She might deign to settle for him, but can not admire him.  Mature, intelligent men have absolutely no interest in being in a relationship with a woman who doesn’t admire them.  This leaves you with 2 choices – either date a man who has equal or greater education/income than yourself, or make a conscious decision to change what you prioritize/admire in a man.  Anything else will have at least one of you “settling.”

  27. 26

    Sorry L, my prior comment went through before I saw your reply about how you can’t relax the Jewish thing.  Maybe your best luck would be found on niche dating websites that are really geared towards Jewish people?  For some reason I (a Catholic) kept getting a lot of Jewish men on mainstream dating websites.  I’m wondering if the Jewish men on those mainstream sites are somehow actively looking for non-Jewish women so aren’t the audience you’re looking for (?)

  28. 27

    Karmic Equation, never said I wouldn’t date a teacher – college degree and real career required.

    I am not clear on the hypergamous lingo, not even completely clear what it means.  Why is it hypergamous to want to be with a successful person – not even Equally successful, simply someone educated, but it isn’t hypergamous to want to be with someone who isn’t bald and overweight?

    I don’t really understand why it is offensive for me to want to date someone who shows ambition professionally?


  29. 28

    Just googled hypergamous and it means someone who marries ABOVE their social class.  By definition, my wanting to be with someone with a career and a BA is not hypergamous.  It would be hypergamous if I wanted a man that makes at least $500,000 a year, for example.  Similarly our example of the secretary married to the lawyer would be an example of a hypergamous secretary.  A doctor/lawyer woman who would like to be with someone of a similar or lesser educational level but with at least a minimum level of education and a professional career is not hypergamous. To say so indicates that femal career achievement is somehow less valuable than male career achievement.  I am sure that you don’t mean that…

    1. 28.1
      Karmic Equation


      You’ve got to read more of this blog. I value my achievements. But I’m also aware that men don’t value my achievements as much as *I* value my achievements. Men don’t give a hoot about women’s achievements. Men want a woman who makes him feel good when he’s around her. Her achievements don’t keep him warm at night.

      The women who “married up” sure, were hypergamous (or lucky). But the MEN then “married down”. My point is that men “marry down” on a regular basis. Mostly because they don’t want a “clone” of themselves. They want a complement. You can read all this stuff from the blog or buy EMK’s book, Why He Disappeared.

      Men are simple. They want sexy. They want easy going. Everything else is window dressing.

      Most women want to “date up” or “marry up” — anything else is “dating down” or “marrying down”. Successful women NEED to date like successful men. Date and marry an easygoing woman who is attractive to him. “Easygoing” is independent of that person’s achievements. I would almost say that most “high achieving women” are far from easygoing.

      You apparently were blessed with beauty. Work on the easygoing and you might find more success in dating.

      I don’t think you’re actually a snotty person, btw. I do believe you do have a double standard habit that you have to kick. It’s just as ok for women to love and marry a man who has fewer achievements than her as it is for a man to marry a woman with fewer achievements than him. That was my point.

      A high achiever doesn’t correlate to being a good partner. Achievements are great for WORK but mean NOTHING for relationships. That’s like saying an actor or an actress who wins an Oscar makes the best husband or wife. Non-sequitur.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *