Online Dating Etiquette 101: Do You HAVE to Write Back?

EmailI’ve tackled this topic before, but it bears writing about again in this series.

What happens if you get an email from someone who totally does NOT interest you?

Can you ignore them and just delete it?

Should you write back?

What should you say to the person?

What if they don’t go away?

The Unwanted Email

Like most people, you have some dealbreakers concerning potential partners.  You won’t date a non-Christian, or a Democrat, or someone who wants kids, or a skinny person.  You have standards, dangit!

Good for you.  We all need standards.

Despite the fact that your profile lists things About My Match, you get these emails from people who embody one of your dealbreakers.  Or more frustratingly, you get an email from someone who is just “meh”.  They might fit your description, but you just don’t feel a spark.

Match.com

Now what?

There are people who will just ignore these emails.  Delete it and forget it ever happened.   But is that fair to the person on the other end of the line?   They’ll be checking their email every day/hour/minute waiting for your reply, which will never arrive.  Put yourself in their place (I’m sure you’ve been there – we all have).  It’s not fun.

The polite thing to do is to send a quick “Thanks, but no thanks” email.  Match.com and other services provide these form emails for their members.   If you’d like, you can craft your own email, but be careful to remain tactful.  Sure, you wanted an athletic girl and she’s the shape of a beach ball.   But she has feelings to consider, so be nice.

What If?

What if she won’t take no for an answer?  At that point, it is best to avoid continuing an argument.  Block her from search and communications and move on.   Walking away is definitely the better move.

Happy dating, geek friends.

About e

Since 2008, E. Foley of Geek’s Dream Girl has been helping geeks from around the world find love. She writes amazing online dating profiles for her fellow geeks and guides them through the perilous waters of the dating scene and out the other side. She's totally proud to report that she's even caused a couple geek weddings! She lives in Maryland with DaveTheGame, her adorable cats, Mr. Peanut & Don Juan, and Titania, Queen of the Cocker Spaniels. (Email e, or follow @geeksdreamgirl on Twitter.)

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