Believe it or not, I have been writing for GTJ for three years this week. As a fun three-year throwback, I wanted to re-post my first ever article below (with a few minor tweaks). I’d love for you to write in the comments section which articles over the past three years (archives here) have moved you, irked you, tickled you, or generally made you think.
As I sit here writing this first blog post for Gather the Jews, I feel strangely like Carrie Bradshaw, although I don’t own a pair of Manolo Blahniks (I do have a ridiculous collection of shoes, though) and I’m not writing on a cute MacBook.
To introduce myself, my name is Erika Ettin, and I am the new relationship/dating blogger for Gather the Jews. You might be thinking, “How did she get this gig?” And even more likely, if you know me already, “Isn’t she the girl who smiles all the time, sings with Rick Recht, and used to work in finance?” While that is true, I left the world of corporate America in March to start my own business – A Little Nudge – where I help people find success in online dating. But in the days of Sex and the City, online dating wasn’t yet discussed. I wonder what they would have thought of NYC’s most eligible bachelors all being lined up side-by-side on Match.com or JDate. Something tells me they could have made a few more seasons.
Rome wasn’t built in a day, and neither was the process of finding the love of your life. Many people go online (let’s use JDate as an example) or go to a speed dating event (or to one of the many events at 6th and I) and expect to find their “one and only” simply by signing up or logging in. Unfortunately, it’s not that easy, and it will take some time. But don’t worry – all of the effort isn’t for naught.
I was on and off JDate for years, yielding several relationships, some longer and some shorter. Throughout the process of online dating, as I did, you learn what you like and what you don’t like. For example, one short JDate relationship years ago taught me that even if a guy says he’s romantic, it doesn’t mean he necessarily is. (Unless you call romantic being in bed at 10 every night without even making an exception for a casual game of scrabble – my favorite.) I was just so eager to be in a relationship that I overlooked it for a while. And JDate gave me my fair share of awkward, yet laughable experiences, like that time I went on a date with a guy, and as we sit down, he says to me, “So, I think we went on a date six years ago.” Oy – I didn’t like him the first time, and I certainly didn’t like him the second!
For the people I give “A Little Nudge” to, I don’t let them quit after one month online. It’s not giving yourself a fair chance. Believe it or not, some people are still warming up to the whole concept of online dating, so maybe they just need time to get acclimated to the scene and respond to you.
As Carrie once said, “People go to casinos for the same reason they go on blind dates – hoping to hit the jackpot. But mostly, you just wind up broke or alone in a bar.” Love is out there, but it just takes some good ol’ time to find it. Might as well have fun with the process!
Erika Ettin is the Founder of A Little Nudge, where she helps people stand out from the online dating crowd and have a rewarding experience. An archive of all of Erika’s columns is also available. Want to connect with Erika? Join her newsletter for updates and tips.