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Should I Give My Online Date My Phone Number?

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Ask the Cyber-Dating Expert

Dear Cyber-Dating Expert,

My new profile is starting to get more attention and I’m excited about it, but I’m confused about phone etiquette.

What should I do when a guy I meet online asks me for my phone number?

I’m a bit squeamish about giving my number out to someone I haven’t met. One guy, who seems nice, has asked for it so we can talk this weekend.

Another guy just gave me his number. Do I have to reciprocate and give him mine as well, or should I just let him know that I’ll call.

~Confused

Dear Confused,

As a woman, I can understand why you’d like to keep your phone number private from someone you haven’t met.

There’s no reason to give out your phone number so quickly. I always recommend signing up for a free Google Voice phone number for dating. It’s simple to do. Just go to Google.com/voice. You will be assigned a phone number that isn’t associated to your name in any phone directory. You can have the calls forwarded to your cell phone.

This way if anyone who bothers you keeps calling, you can block their number or have the option to change it to another Google Voice number for dating.

Having a Google Voice number protects your identity and should solve the problem.

Phone number exchanges are really very personal. Some women prefer to give out their number so the men can call them. Others like to take control and do the dialing.

My suggestion is to ask the man for his number and what times are convenient for him to talk. If he doesn’t answer when you call, leave a message and say you’ll call back later.

As far as reciprocating, you don’t have to give out your phone number when a man provides his. See how the conversation goes and if you’re comfortable, then yes, give him your CELL number. He doesn’t have to know it’s really a Google voice number. It’s your secret for now.

If someone asks for your number, let them know you’d be happy to call him and ask for his number.

If all goes well on your date, you’ll be happy to exchange numbers with the man who you’d like to add to your date calendar.

Happy Dating!

Do you have a question for Julie Spira?

Julie Spira is a top online dating expert and founder of CyberDatingExpert.com. She creates irresistible profiles for singles on the dating scene. For more online dating advice, sign up for the Free Weekly Flirt, follow @JulieSpira on Twitter and at Facebook.com/CyberDatingExpert.

Read Julie Spira’s bestselling book, The Perils of Cyber-Dating. Available at Amazon and Barnes and Noble.

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