I give up.
Honestly I do.
My two year anniversary with eHarmony
passed on July 27. When I changed checking accounts after Christmas, I managed to finagle three weeks of free membership with them, and my membership was supposed to renew on the 18th. Except that this month I didn't do it.
Let me be clear: I enjoyed being an eHarmony member. More often than not I would eagerly anticipate reviewing the six or seven new matches I'd get on a daily basis. But recently I discovered that the joy in it was no longer there. When that happened, I knew the time had come to hang it up and move on.
I still think e-harmony is the best "relationship" website out there (and I've tried most of them) and have no complaints with the number of matches I received. Nor did I have a problem with the quality of the women I actually got to communicate with. Since you have to be a paying member in order to communicate, there were very few "tire kickers" like you see all over the place on those other personals web sites...
Unfortunately, during my 2+ years of membership, I've had minimal success. A grand total of 2,877 matches were provided for me by eHarmony through their matching system. With that many matches you would think that I'd have been able to arrange a few physical meetings, right?
Nope. Not a one.
I'm not talking purely sexual encounters here, I'm talking dates. Dinner and a movie. You know, simple look her in the eye, reach my hand across the table to hold hers kind of dates. The kind of dates that lead to second, third and fourth dates - which lead to long-term relationships.
I did get to exchange emails outside of eHarmony with a handful of women. But there was only one with whom I had any extensive email conversation on a regular basis. We even exchanged phone numbers and talked weekly for about two months, sometimes more. Unfortunately, she lives outside of Portland, Oregon and I don't live anywhere near there. Along with being a single mom, she also had employment concerns and was dealing with the worry and hassle of trying to get all of the government paperwork together to bring her parents to this country permanently from Russia.
Here's a breakdown, by communication stage* of my eHarmony membership:
Of the 2,877 Closed Matches -
I reached Open Communication with 135 women (4.70%).
I reached stage 4 with 43 women (1.49%)
I reached stage 3 with 165 women (5.74%)
I reached stage 2 with 106 women (3.68%)
I reached stage 1 with 2,428 women (84.39%)*eHarmony uses a guided communication system, graded into five communication stages.
Open Communication means that members exchange email through eHarmony.
Stage 4 means that members have exchanged three open ended questions.
Stage 3 means that members have exchanged lists of Must Haves and Can't Stands.
Stage 2 means that members have exchanged five multiple choice questions.
Stage 1 means that members have reviewed each others introductory information.
I'm not giving up on the fact that there is someone special out there for me, just that I'm not going to find her there on eHarmony. Not now, anyway.
Am I holding out for the right woman?
Absolutely. I know she's out there somewhere.
I've been married once, which didn't work out as I envisioned, even though I have two beautiful kids from that relationship. I know a successful marriage takes a lot of hard work and the rewards are worth it. I made some mistakes the first time, probably was way too immature and took it for granted. Should I ever get the chance to be married again, I won't make the same mistakes I did the first time, I can promise you that. And distance won't be a problem, either. I'll go where I need and do whatever it takes, in order to find it.
These days long term marriages are a dying breed, but they do exist and are possible. In my family I had one set of grandparents who were just a few weeks short of their 70th
anniversary when my grandmother died in 2001. The other set of grandparents were sweethearts from around 14 years of age and were married for over 45 years when my grandfather died in 1985. My parents celebrated their 39th
anniversary this year. I have three sets of aunts and uncles that have been married longer than my parents have.
That's the kind of long lasting relationship I want.
It's frustrating waiting for her (I'm not getting any younger!) but it will be well worth it when all is said and done.
Labels: dating, eHarmony, happiness, relationships