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Jewish Journal

Lunch With JDate Was Yet Another Interesting Online Dating Experience

by Ilana Angel

October 2, 2010 | 9:19 am

Usually when I write I had a JDate lunch it means I had a date with a man I met on JDate.  This week when I say I had a JDate lunch, it means I went out with some employees of JDate.  I met a couple of ladies who wanted to check in and see how I was doing, how the blog was, and if I was happy with my experience.  I hope when they read this blog they know it is positive.

One has a boyfriend and one is married.  I didn’t feel either one could relate to me in terms of age, experience, or having to use the Internet to meet men.  They were both lovely and I appreciate very much that they took the time to meet me.  I felt like I was out with the girls from “The Hills” as we chatted about my experiences in dating online and specifically how I felt about meeting men through JDate.

I must tell you that even though they seemed to hear what I was saying, and acknowledged what my concerns were, I just don’t think they got it.  I don’t think they can ever really understand how it is, because they don’t do it.  I get that there are a gazillion people on JDate and they cannot monitor what everyone writes, the pictures they post, and the lies told.  What they can do however, is make me feel like they understand, and they didn’t do that.

I don’t think these young women get that there is an emotional, financial, and time commitment to dating online.  On some levels it is empowering to go online and find love, but in other ways it is completely humiliating.  Anyone who says they like dating online is a liar.  It is a horrible thing to have to do but a necessary evil in the times we live in.  We do it because there are not a lot of other options available to meet people.

JDate has changed a lot over the years.  They have made some things easier by making things clearer in terms of what you are searching for.  What JDate has not done, is make me feel like they care about me.  It may sound silly, but it’s really not.  I am their customer, I pay for a service, and I feel like they owe me some sort of acknowledgment that they appreciate not only my money, but also my belief that they can help me find love.

I am curious what the average age of an employee at JDate is.  I would guess that it skews rather young.  I picture their offices as being run by a bunch of kids who have no clue what it feels like to go online everyday, put yourself up on the auction block, and wait to see if anyone bids.  For those of us who do it, it’s personal.  For the employees of JDate, it’s business.  I wonder also how many are in inter-faith relationships.

The ladies spoke a lot about research they do to make the site better.  They talked about all the clients they speak with, the testimonials of people who have found love, and how the overall feedback is that people are happy.  I want to know who it is that they are talking to because people I speak with are frustrated.  When I mentioned this to them they seemed offended and said that did not match up to what they are hearing.

If you have read my blog in the past, you know I am not one to blow smoke up anyone’s tuchas.  I share my feelings openly and honestly.  One could argue that in this particular instance, I might be well advised to not be so honest.  I work for The Jewish Journal and they do business with JDate.  Would I be better off not writing about it at all?  I don’t think so.  I believe that my opinion not only matters, but is shared by many.

As a woman who only dates within my faith, and one that is willing to invest the time and energy into meeting someone online, I think the services provided by JDate are a blessing.  Where else would I have the opportunity to meet so many men who are looking for the same thing as me, where we are able to start off knowing that we have at least one thing in common?  There is no other more powerful tool to use when searching for love.

I have written about good dates I’ve had through JDate, but people always remember the bad ones.  If you look back at some of the dates that I’ve been on, it begs the question why do I still do it?  The answer is simple.  I do it because it works.  I like JDate.  I believe in their service and I know if I am patient, it may work for me.  More importantly, if I don’t meet my Beshert on JDate, my time spent on the site has taught me a lot.

To the women who I had lunch with, while my search for love is personal, this blog is business.  I am not trying to trash you or JDate.  What I am doing is saying that you provide something that I need, am willing to pay for, and value.  I am asking you to expand your research to people who are dedicated, focused and frustrated.  I would be happy to provide you with a list of names of people who will be happy to be honest with you.

At the end of the day this blog is a love letter to JDate. It is because I respect you that I am willing to work on our relationship rather than break up with you.  I want you to tell me you get it, you’re in my corner, you appreciate me for trying, and make me feel like more than just a credit card. And incase I have not said it lately, thank you.  Thank you for reminding me that it can happen for me if I believe, don’t give up, and keep the faith.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

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Ilana Angel writes two blogs for JewishJournal.com. KEEPING THE FAITH is about her worldview as a single Jewish mother, and KEEPING IT REAL is all about reality television....

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