Myth #5: Online dating is dangerous
The sad fact is that any way you meet strangers can be potentially dangerous, not just through online dating websites. Fortunately, online dating has some “built in” protections. Your true identity is hidden – you use a made up name or “handle” that you go by, you’re given an email address only through the website separate from your own email address, and no one can get your name or contact information unless you give it to them.
When it’s time to meet someone you’ve met through an online dating service, it would be wise to employ some commonsense ways of interacting – meet them for the first time in a public place with your own transportation, tell a friend where you’re going, have your own funds if you need to pay the bill or grab a cab, and most important of all – stay sober. And trust your instincts. If something feels “off” to you, excuse yourself early and go home – without them knowing where your home is. Don’t let anyone “talk you into” anything, such as letting them pick you up, find out where you work, or follow you home if you’re not comfortable. That’s the way to safely live to love another day.