Kathy: Six years ago life changed for me and two other friends. All three of us had lost our jobs through downsizing and the companies eventually closed. At the same time, all of us were not in relationships. Each of us had been through divorces and living on our own.
For me dating was uneventful or disastrous mostly because there was nothing sparking interest. My 2 friends were having the same experiences. We would meet each other at the local dog park, walk our dogs, discussing our lives and encourage each other to keep going with the job searches. We decided to join dating services over the internet. I was so discouraged with the people I was dating and I thought that I needed a new way of meeting people. I had seen commercials regarding eHarmony and I was interested in it because of the personality test that was given to match people.
I told myself that if I was to ever use a dating service, eHarmony would be the one I would choose. I figured if someone had to pay the fee and take a test, the commitment of time and money would filter out those less genuine; it would be for more serious folks who wanted to find a life partner. I liked the fact that eHarmony people were brought together who had similar traits and interests.
My friends chose other dating services. I took the test and began receiving my matches. It was great to meet people through this service and I did not have any bad experiences. I enjoyed this dating experience because it helped me meet different people and discover what I wanted in a mate. I had the opportunity to find out about a person before I even went out on a date. I enjoyed meeting people this way and I discovered many things about myself in the process. I eventually found a job and was still dating people through eHarmony. I was meeting quite a few people and my weekends were never dull.
The weekend I met Paul, I had three dates with three different people. The two dates on Friday and Saturday went okay but I knew that those two people were not for me. I had my date with Paul on Sunday and I was thinking I would call it off. In the end I decided to go and it was the best decision I have made in my life. Paul and I met at Longwood gardens for our first date and I fell in love that day.
In June, we will have been married four years and I am so glad I met him that day at Longwood Gardens.
Paul: I was a divorced man with primary but shared custody of my son. I knew from the beginning that dating on days, even when my son was at his mother’s, was going to be difficult. I did not have the time or the resources for active continuous dating. When I did, I was reluctant to bring people to my home because I did not want strangers to share in the life of my son, and I did not want to give my son the impression I was searching for a parental replacement. (He was 6 years old when this began).
I tried several on-line services, some I have seen commercials, because it’s supposed to be okay to look. I found myself having 2 problems: to look on line and to look at real life showed me that some of these women genuinely see themselves today as they looked 20 years ago, or they were advertising to what would get them in contact with people.
The 2nd problem was that the women I was attracted to must have had negative experiences of married men looking for fun; because, I was being accused of being one of these men. I had finally met someone through another site that seemed to be the beginning of a relationship, but in the end, that divorce was not final, plus there were a few more issues that raised a trust question; so I at last tried eHarmony.
Like Kathy, I was surprised by the time commitment and money (at the time eHarmony was $99 for 3 months and competitors were $99 for the year) needed to complete the personality profile, which showed me things about me I had taken for granted or didn’t notice. I was reluctant at first not having a catalog to pick from based on my physical attractions, and then realized that basing a relationship on that alone was usually good for the moment but not long afterward. I relaxed and let eHarmony introduce me. I was in contact with several women on eHarmony and very impressed with the survey questions being passed between me and the women.
The answers helped me see if I was compatible with those giving the answers – by the way I felt reading the answers. I learned patience as well, because the more thought provoking the answer, the longer survey email continued before we actually got to the part of me asking someone on a date. For me it was Kathy. After the first meeting I knew I would let my subscription expire.
We spent the day walking through Longwood Gardens and spoke with each other about real things as if we had known each other for years: family, friends, interests, concerns and we played… pictures, lunch, smiles and laughing. We married a year and a month after our first date. She calls me her birthday present because we had our first contact on her birthday. I call myself a lucky man. I see her through new eyes every day. Her laugh, her smile, her wanting to make everyone’s life better makes me feel like I am truly one with her.
Paul & Kathy: Our life began in typical turmoil: each of us selling our homes, buying one together, inviting guests to a back yard wedding, planning a reception, moving the contents of 2 homes, putting together a honeymoon, arranging dog care, my son’s care, and putting up a fence for the dogs… all in 15 days.
From that moment we had and have a beautiful family: Husband, Wife, Son, 2 dogs… all living in harmony.