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Should I Change My Name in my Profile? Online Dating Advice

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Ask the Cyber-Dating Expert

 

In this week’s Ask the Cyber Dating Expert column, we heard from Jennifer…or was it Valerie?

What’s in a name you might ask?

USA Today reported this week that the top baby names for girls were Sophia and Isabella.

So when Valerie contacted me to critique her online dating profile, I questioned why her user name was “MeetJennifer.”

According to Valerie, she believed that 47% of men liked the name Jennifer. She truly believed that she’d get more views of her online dating profile, with the result of meeting more men.

Apparently this trick didn’t work. In the top 20 list of most popular baby names for girls, Jennifer didn’t appear anywhere. It was all in her head.

You see, men don’t want to be tricked. They’ll view a large bouquet of profiles and decide which thumbnail photos appeal to them. Then, if intrigued by what they see, they’ll try to remember your screen name and will read a few sentences of your profile, which would hopefully lead to a short introduction email to get the digital ball rolling.

Although men are used to women lying about their weight and age, they would prefer that women would be honest about it. They’ll even go to great lengths and look at a potential date’s Facebook or Linkedin page to see if the photos match up. Once you start with a trick or a lie, they’ll always wonder what else you might be hiding.

While it might seem innocent to change your name on your profile, it isn’t wise. If you say your name is Jennifer, they’re hoping that Jennifer will answer the phone when they call. They’re happy to go on a date with Jennifer. But men are visual. It really doesn’t matter what your first name is, as long as you’re honest.

Valerie was going on coffee dates and explaining to guys that her real name wasn’t Valerie. This became confusing to men and took up a lot of time in the conversation. Many men wondered what else Valerie was making up if she’d change her first name to attract their attention. Valerie no longer became a top prospect to men, because of misleading advertising. She rarely went on second dates.

While you think I’m overreacting, I beg to differ. Valerie’s date card is empty and she’s still single.

The best advice I gave her was to change her profile name completely and not to include the first name of any woman, including herself. Have a catchy screen name that expresses what she’s passionate about. Let the real Valerie answer the phone, emails, and show up on a date.

A confident woman is what a man wants. It doesn’t matter what her name is. All that matters is that she’s real and he wants her to be his girlfriend.

My best advice is to toss out any insecurities or tricks to try to get the guy. If he’s interested, you’ll know it. When he’s lying in bed next to you at night, let him whisper your real name.

Wishing you much love and joy in cyberspace, or wherever you may roam.

Julie Spira is an Online Dating Expert and was an early adopter of the Internet. She’s the author of the bestseller, The Perils of Cyber-Dating: Confessions of a Hopeful Romantic Looking for Love Online and creates Irresistible Profiles for singles on the dating scene. For more online dating advice, follow @JulieSpira on Twitter and sign up for the free Weekly Flirt newsletter.

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