I’ve been an online dating “lurker” since my divorce. I joined eHarmony on last year’s very depressing Valentine’s Day.
I was still living at my mom’s house which is out in the woods. There were no men in sight except for the biker across the street.
I took the eHarmony personality test. Be careful with this, because once you take it – you never get another chance. Make sure you’re awake, relatively chipper and feeling completely open and honest with yourself.
After the test eHarmony served up my first seven matches. I was excited – “Look, an inbox full of men! Just for me!” But I couldn’t see the photos. They wanted my money. But at the time it wasn’t in the budget – at all – so I started sifting through the descriptions.
One guy actually sneaked his e-mail into his profile, “EHarmony is expensive,” he wrote, “E-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org.” Yay! A guy who likes to beat the system. I like that so I sent him a lonely Valentine’s Day e-mail. Days later there’s still no response. I had even attached a picture. Hmmmm. I forget about it and try to stomach my first virtual rejection. It stings a little.
Three months later I get a response, “Hi, this is Carlise, Dan’s friend. I am checking his e-mail because he actually died in a car accident last October.”
My heart cries for Dan for a moment and then my sympathy for he and his family is replaced wtih anger at eHarmony. How could they do that? Then it hits me. The “matches” on eHarmony are not paying members. Many just popped in, took the personality test, and then never returned – or even worse – died.
I still became a paying member. I’m was too tempted by all of those new “matches” they e-mail you every morning. So after I spent over $100 to activate my account I was like a kid at a candy store – hurrying to scope out every man’s photograph.
I didn’t think one of them was cute. I e-mail a few any way but never got responses – because they’re probably inactive accounts. I e-mailed eHarmony asking for a refund. They told me my matching preferences weren’t broad enough, that I should be open to dating people of all ages from all over the world.
After receiving over 155 matches, only one led to a lunch date, and that was a complete failure.
Bottom line: don’t waste your money on eHarmony.
My friend Abby, my bestest single mom friend, had three very interesting and very good looking dates from Yahoo Personals last week.
The reason Yahoo and Match are better online dating sites than eHarmony:
1. They’re inexpensive.
2. You can see rough dates of when matches last logged in (although both sites should improve this feature).
3. You can control your searches, don’t let a computer match you - especially if 80% of those matches aren’t even active on the site.
See my other online dating entries for more background on this and some very important online dating tips.