My latest Catholic Match post is up, wherein I advise people to break the rules in dating:
You are a unique soul. The person on the other end of the screen is likewise unique. You are both looking for someone who might be the One. There’s no formula for that; no system, no instructions, no ‘right way’ to go about it. There’s only the aforementioned fundamentals and the question of what works.
So don’t be afraid to be creative, to do something bold, unorthodox, or seemingly insane. Again, there’s a person on the other end of the screen, and people tend to respond to things that are directly addressed to them and things that surprise them.
Just for example, the general rule for first messages is to keep it short, light, and mention something you have in common. This is generally good advice. Now say you think you’ve found the artist of your dreams. Rather than start off with “I like art too,” you might try actually drawing a sketch of her profile pic, scribble a greeting on it, and sending that to her (assuming, that is, you can find a way to send attachments. Or, you know, you end up meeting the old fashioned way).
She might find that creepy, or she might find that flattering, or she might start critiquing your art style. One thing she won’t be doing; she’s not going to ignore it.
I also get to compare online dating to virgin sacrifice (though probably not in the way you’re thinking). Go here to find out why.