Don't Look Now, Part 2


by The 4-Way Panel

Dear 4-Way,

I’m online dating and I’ve met the standard amount of freaks, guys looking to cheat on their wives, and jerks who just want to get laid. I’ve met some nice guys too. But I’ve noticed that after a few dates with someone nice who shows some promise, he gets back online—even though we’re still going out and things seem to be going well. (I only know he’s online because I go on to look at his pics again and read his profile—dorky to admit, but true.) I’m not looking for commitment after the third or fourth date; I guess I just hoped that after a few quality dates, guys might be interested in focusing on one person and less likely to still troll for women. It really kills the momentum in my opinion. I feel deflated when I go on to look at my crush and see, “Online now!” Any thoughts?—SB

Jody    The straight woman’s perspective: Rebecca Brown

Do you hear me singing, SB? Because I’m the choir, and you’re preachin’ honey. I can’t tell you how many times this has been the topic of conversation within my gaggles of women friends. And I’ll tell you the same thing we all tell each other: you’re too in your head right now. Stop worrying about what he’s doing or feeling and focus on what you’re feeling.

I’m sure you’d like to punch me in the face for going all therapist on you and telling you to focus on your feelings. It’s way more interesting to sit and brood over why he’s online when he just dropped you off thirty minutes ago, kissed you goodnight, and made plans for the next date. Is he looking for someone else? Someone funnier? Someone prettier? Someone with more shapely nail beds? Smaller nostrils? He might be. And he might not be. He might be back online to check you out. But you’ll never know for sure so you might as well stop torturing yourself by asking those questions.

When you get online to get all shmoopy over his profile, you run the risk of him seeing that you’re online too. Maybe he sees that and thinks, “What? I just spent $45 on apple martinis! And I hate apple martinis!” The potential to feel bad is there on both sides so think carefully before you sport-stalk his profile.

So my advice is to let your actions reflect your feelings. If you like him and want to go out with him again, don’t get online. Ride the good date wave while it lasts and resist the temptation to log on and reread his pithy profile responses. Profiles are really just a big bunch of marketing hooey, anyway; they’re created to sell the sizzle, not necessarily the steak. Use your dates to get to know his inner steak, not his profile.

Check in tomorrow to read the gay woman's perspective by Jody Fischer.

The 4-Way is published monthly. If you have a question for our 4-Way panel, please send it to them in care of the editor at To read more of The 4-Way columns or to listen to our podcasts, visit The 4-Way now.

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