Finding love online is no longer perceived as being unusual or odd, which it tended to be in the early days of the Internet. Plenty of couples have ended up together as a result of meeting on an online forum, meeting on an epal site, talking in a chat room or joining a dating site. There are so many ways to connect with people online and you can immediately ‘click’ with someone, because you find you have similar interests or the same kind of outlook on life. In a world where people are working longer hours and finding themselves spending increasing amounts of time online, it only makes sense that more people are falling in love online. However, there are a number of dangers associated with falling in love over the Internet.
If you don’t live too far away from the person you have ‘clicked’ with online, you can arrange to meet them not long after chatting to establish whether there is any real-life chemistry and whether the person is who they say they are. Of course, even then there are no guarantees that the person you’re talking to you is telling you the whole truth, as is the case when you talk to anyone. For all you know, the person could be married or have lied about their career or family background. At least meeting someone in the flesh makes the whole relationship feel more real. If you keep your relationship to the online world only, it is very easy to romanticise the person you’re talking with and to build the relationship up in your mind into something it is not.
After all, when you’re online you can open up more. You can tell someone your deepest, darkest secrets and it often feels like the other person understands you and always pays attention to what you’re saying. Yet, in real life, it can be much harder to talk about your emotions and feelings, and something you really want to tell someone can remain unsaid. Just because you feel emotionally close to someone online does not mean that same connection will translate into a real-world situation. Thus, the longer you decide to leave meeting up, the more likely it is you will find yourself disappointed when you do meet.
It may also be the case that both parties have different ideas about where the relationship is heading. Whereas you may believe yourself to have fallen in love with the other person, they may profess their love but actually be seeing someone else, thinking that you’re never going to meet anyway, and so believing it doesn’t really matter. It is easy to get carried away in fantasy land, talking about your future plans and how you want to settle down, maybe flirt a little and talk dirty. It gives you a buzz and you want more, but if you can’t get the other person to meet you, then you’re wasting your time on someone who doesn’t really care when you could be looking for something more real.
Falling in love online can be a positive thing and there are many cases where it has worked out fine, with people meeting up, getting on in person and making a long-term commitment in the real world. For most people, an online relationship just isn’t enough and so if you fall in love online without establishing that you want to take the relationship offline, you could be in for disappointment, especially if the person you’re in love with has a different view of where your relationship actually stands.