Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Meeting face to face after an online encounter

In his The Soul in Love column for Beliefnet, Thomas Moore helps a reader with her concerns about meeting a man she became acquainted with through an online dating service. Moore talks about her physical and emotional safety, suggesting,
"... you meet him first in a public place, perhaps bringing a friend of yours with you. At the very least, tell a good friend when and where you are meeting."
Moore urges her to share her ideas about sex with her new friend,
"You're clear that you don't want casual sex. If you continue to exchange emails, you can let him know how you feel about it. You can be clear and brief and then go on to other things. If you're worried about the sexual part and don't say anything, it will be the elephant on the screen and may interfere. A man worth knowing shouldn't be put off by a brief, clearly stated expression of how you feel about sex."
In general, Moore recommends that her responses "be strong, assertive, and clear" and that she present herself as a confident, equal participant in the getting-to-know-you dance.

Beliefnet readers are encouraged to post their own reactions beside Moore's column, and they're invited to register at the free Barque: Thomas Moore Forum to discuss Moore's response.