Post # 1
Just asking for a friend.
Seriously, what do the Bees believe about falling in love online?
Watching shows like 90 Day Fiancé and Catfish have me really wondering about this. Are people really falling in love with people on the other side of the world? How do you fall in love with someone with whom you can’t really communicate, ie neither of you speaks the other’s language?
Also, do you think that there are certain people more likely to look for online long distance romance than others? Like any personality traits they might have in common? When I as online dating, my policy was: geography is destiny. IOW, I was putting zero time into someone who wasn’t within reasonable driving distance.
What drives people, when they get that first contact from someone in a far away country, to respond and keep it going?
Post # 2
IMO and IME, you tend to fall in love with the idea of someone.
After my divorce, I did a lot of online dating. I “met” a ton of men who I thought were my dream guys. Through text, email, phone, they were the perfect match. Then after weeks/a month of talking, we’d meet and there would be no chemistry at all. I realized that it’s easy to be funny and witty when you aren’t face to face with someone.
After a while, I insisted that we meet pretty much with in a day (sometimes hours if we could) of starting to chat. I was sick of wasting weeks of my time on someone and then it fizzling out right after we finally meet.
I do think people look for these types of relationships because it’s easy to build yourself up more. If you don’t meet in person, they won’t know how you live your day to day life.
I’m not saying it can’t happen, because I know people who have met online/long distance and ended up married and happy.
Post # 3
No. You can be in love with the IDEA of someone, but I don’t believe you can actually fall in love with someone you have never met.
Post # 4
I agree with PP, but it can and has happened so its not impossible. However, these are people who usually meet online, go on a date quickly and then fall in love.
When I tried meeting guys online (Bumble, lol) I was always infatuated with the idea of them, but when we actually went on a date they were always WAYYYY different than what I’d expected, no matter how long we’d been talking. Its easy to create a glossy image of someone when your only interactions are texting, phone calls or a couple hours of skype.
I also think its the easy attention-building up the excitment for the next text, call or email. People who are really shy or socially awkward can be more open with technology. They feel like they know this person100% but again, once you actually meet them its WAY different and they’re still a stranger.
Post # 5
Absolutely not. What happens when people think they “fell in love” with someone online is that they have become infatuated with their idea of the person on the other side of the screen. It’s no different than when a teenager develops a hard core crush on a girl or guy they’ve only spoken to a handful of times – they fill in the blanks with ideas about that person that fit their ideal partner and they daydream about how perfect that person is for them.
We all do this to some degree when we first meet someone or start talking to someone, but most people are capable of recognizing that they don’t *actually* know the person yet and the daydreams are just fun.
Post # 6
I met two of my boyfriends online (one is now my fiancé) and I definitely began to fall in love with them before I had met them face to face.
Post # 7
jellybellynelly : +1
If you’re lucky, your idea of someone will turn out to be reality and so you’re already well on your way to being in love. But it takes meeting the real human with quoibles and faults to truly fall in love with the person and not just the idea of them.
Post # 8
sassy411 : I met someone 3000 miles away, same country. I was very into him by the time we actually met in person but in love? No way. People don’t seem to know what actual love is anymore. If you’ve had 5 boyfriends and been “in love” with them all, you have no idea what love is (I’m speaking generally, OP, when I say ‘you,’ not to you directly). It’s no wonder they fall in love and wind up divorced – there’s no call to be committed these days and it’s sad.
So what led me to look so far from my geographical area? Well I looked there too but had no luck. People I dated were nice, but no spark. The one I dated half a year embarrassed me in front of my parents (as in I was embarrassed about him because of things he said) and freaked me out when he said he loved me – clearly the wrong guy. I never, ever got a date without looking online first, though there’s nothing wrong with me in particular. Actually one person asked me out – just happened that I was going to drive across the country to meet my now-husband a few days later, so I told him we had to wait and see. And then I said no. The nice thing about the internet is that we can spread a broader net now to find someone we are truly compatible with. Not everyone can find love in their hometown, state, country.
In the end, I did say I loved him within about 2 years (keep in mind we were still in a LDR, so that’s a reasonable time frame). It was about 5 before we lived in the same place and 9 before we got married (his fault). Why keep the spark going even though we were so far away? Because we had so much in common and liked, then loved each other. If it’s real, you’ll do almost anything.
But never meeting in the first place? That’s lust at best, not love.
Post # 9
- Wedding: October 2019 - Chateau Lake Louise
sassy411 : I think there’s a brightline between infatuation and love that a lot of people don’t bother to acknowledge. I think it’s entirely possible to be deeply infatuated with someone, as well as to have feelings for them, but love requires a certain defree of intimacy that most online-only relationships never quite muster.
Body language, chemistry, smell – these are all critical elements of attraction that can’t really be accurately conveyed via computer. If we’re talking about the common understanding of romantic love, it has a component of physical connection by it’s very definition. Lacking that, I have a hard time calling it “love”
That being said, I think feelings that develop in this kind of relationship can be totally genuine. For myself, I have formed a friendship with someone I met on the Bee and have never met. We’ve only corresponded electronically – never even chatted on the phone. Even still, I consider her one of my best friends. I am emotionally invested in her, and our relationship is deeply important to me.
What’s different is that while there is love between us (speaking for myself anyway) we aren’t claiming to be in love.
For most people, there’s a point at which infatuation develops into something more. Something deeper, and it can be called love. In the same way LDRs tend to hide a lot of flaws, a relationship conducted solely online is missing a degree of exposure to the other person that is all but critical to the development of true romantic intimacy.
Like most PPs, I think you can fall in love with the IDEA of someone, but until you get your nose next to their neck, it’s almost impossible to call it the real thing.
Post # 10
I never knew my boyfriend before I met him in person so I can’t speak to loving him before meeting him face to face but he was 3000km from my hometown before I moved to the same city that he lived in. I don’t think geography should make you feel limited in finding love. If I never moved I may never have met him.
Post # 11
I think you can fall in love with the part of them that you do know, but that doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll still love them when you actually meet them. I think you can connect with someone intellectually and emotionally through writing, so it’s not just the idea of them, but it’s not the whole of them either.
People can present themselves very differently through edited writing and their best photos. You also aren’t really sharing your life with them. Even in long distance relationships where the couple does meet – you may fall in love with the part of them that you know, but then when you move in with one another and get to know each other on a more real-life day-to-day-grind level it’s totally different.
Post # 12
I met my fiance online, through a mutual friend. Because of this mutual friend and us trusting him, it was easier for us to find things we had in common, appreciate one another, and trust one another. According to my fiance, he loved me almost right away, but we did not TELL each other we loved each other until we met. It’s one thing to have feelings, but to take t hat verbal step I think requires physical presence. When we met for the first time and had our first kiss, I knew in an instant he was the one. But physical presence was needed for that.
Post # 13
I think it’s completely possible, but not a guarantee. I’m sure there’s thousands out there who end up getting conned or need the physical interaction, just as there’s thousands who have and make it work.
Post # 14
I don’t think it’s love – I think it’s more infatuation or love of the idea of someone.
When I was 17 I ‘fell’ for a guy I met online, he would ring me from Canada every day but when he came back home, nothing really happened. I was gutted when he got himself a girlfriend. We met again when we were in our early 20s and there was a lot there, sparks and a connection but things didn’t go our way. Now we are both late 20s and share the odd message here and there – I know I’m still attracted to him but I don’t consider it ‘love’ when I think of my last relationship.
4 years ago I got talking to a guy online through a friend, and when we met up a month ago and went on a city break together – I was totally disappointed. He wasn’t what I had thought or believed in at all – but 4 years ago i was describing him as ‘the one’ – so silly when you think about it now – was just an idea of him, I had set him up to be the perfect man. He’s far from it!
Post # 15
I also met my FH online (not through a dating website, and in a really roundabout accidental way). I hadn’t met any previous partners online, and don’t think either of us have any ‘particular’ personality traits that made this scenario more likely. Neither of us is socially awkward.
We spoke for a few months before we met, which gradually got pretty intense and I definitely thought we had a deep connection, was infatuated in quite a big way, and felt at the time like I was in love with some part of him.
Fortunately, when we met, everything was exactly as we thought it would be, including the physical chemistry. Ironically, he’s the person I’ve been the most physically and sexually attraced to out of anyone I’ve ever been with.
However, with hindsight, I feel like it’s much more likely that the connection you think you have is unlikely to translate into real life. We were just very lucky.