Online Dating Dangers: With more of us finding love on the internet, also comes the potential pitfalls of misrepresentation, ulterior motives, anti social behavior and even cyber bullying.
First and foremost, it must be stated that for the majority of people subscribing to a dating site like this, the experience tends to offer far more positives than negatives. In any scenario involving interaction with strangers, it is an unfortunate aspect of life that you may well come across people who are less than genuine, or unwilling to give the same level of commitment. So it’s always worthwhile approaching any new contact with a certain degree of caution. Here are some of the dangers you should be aware of when it comes to online relationships.
Appearances can be deceptive
Most singles who go online and search of a partner will appreciate they’re entering a world where there will be a lot of competition. Individuals standing out from the crowd will stand the best chance of attracting the attention of potential dates. But for many, there is a temptation to present the optimum image of themselves, even if this means a misleading impression. It is not unusual for some site users to use photoshopped images, or photos which are far from current. While there is nothing inherently wrong about choosing the most flattering images to attract attention, it can stoke mistrust.
Certain individuals can have ulterior motives
Say you’ve just met someone on a dating site and discovered you have a lot in common. You get to the stage where you enjoy chats about a variety of subjects, and the more you get to know this person, the more relaxed you are in their company.
Eventually, you feel there’s enough of a rapport that you’d be willing to consider yourselves an item. As your bond strengthens, your new partner makes innocent inquiries about your bank details, suggesting some sort of joint account might indicate how your feelings are growing. But when you check statements at the end of the month, your account has been emptied. When it comes to online dating, there are many cautionary tales like these. The bottom line? If someone is pestering you for personal information, this should raise a red flag.
Some site users should be avoided like the plague
There should always be an underlying strand of fun and informality with Internet dating. But the online world is no different from the outside world in that you will encounter all sorts of individuals – some you gel with, others you don’t. You wouldn’t tolerate someone you bumped into inside your favorite bar who displayed antisocial tendencies, or who had a violent temper, so why on earth would you do so in the online environment?
The Internet can be particularly dangerous for the young
You only have to read newspapers or listen to the news to be aware of the worryingly all-too-common stories about young people going online only to be duped by much older site users, on forums or dating sites. Seemingly innocent invitations to indulge in conversations can quickly take a more sinister turn, as the vulnerable youth is groomed and drawn into illegal activities. This is where parental controls, peer support, and mentoring services are so important.
People can be stressed out by online relationships
We live in a world where being online for considerable periods is something we take for granted. The flipside of the convenience of what could be described as 24/7 networking is that people can become stressed by so many different aspects of their online life. There might be negative comments on social media, or out-and-out trolling by small-minded idiots who create disharmony and lower self-esteem for no other reason than malice. Online dating sites are a particularly fertile breeding ground for cyberbullies.