Here are some tips on how to stay safe when cyber dating and going from online to off line (the meet)
1. Before you go from online to offline, you should get more information. Find out who your date is. Ask for your date’s first name and last name. Ask where they work and live, what they like and do not like. Ask around if anyone knows the person. Always share your plans a friend or relative (or both) who can follow up on your safety. Let them know who you are meeting, where you are meeting, when you are meeting and when you plan to return. Make sure your date knows you are spreading the word about them.
2. Keep a cell phone with you at all times. Make sure your cell phone is fully charged and take a charger with you for long distance travel. Do not carry large amounts of cash. If you go home with someone, remember to protect your valuables. If you bring someone home, don’t leave your wallet, pocketbook or valuables in sight.
3. Always be aware of your surroundings, if at a party, mix your own drinks and never leave drinks unattended. Getting drunk or being slipped a drug happens all too often. If you go out with a new person, drink in moderation or not at all. If you need to leave for any reason without your drink, (to go to the bathroom, for example) ask for a fresh drink when you return.
4. Consider “double-dating” or taking someone with you for your first offline date. Double-dating can take a lot of the fear out of your first offline encounter.
If double-dating is not an option, consider having someone accompany you and then leave after meeting your date. Add another layer of safety by having that person pick you up at an allocated time. If you cannot double-date or have someone accompany you, you can ask someone to observe discreetly from a distance without intruding on your date.
Finally, and most importantly, if you are going to engage in any sexual activity, ask about your date’s health status. Find out their HIV and STD status. Also remember that not everyone is honest and some will not tell you their real status.
Meeting someone online, chatting and getting to know them can be very exciting. There are many people who have formed life-long friendships and even married via cyber dating. It should be approached with both enthusiasm and caution. Following these PIX11 “Know Your Enemy” tips alone won’t guarantee safety, but may be the difference between a really enjoyable fun date versus one of the worst dates you ever had. Remember, use common sense and always exercise care and vigilance when using social media.
A woman said she paid thousands for a service she never got after a dating service Target 8 investigated shut down its Grand Rapids branch.
Millions of people across the country use some kind of dating service. Here in West Michigan, one woman turned to a dating service after her husband died. Another did the same after a nasty divorce. Both say they lost thousands of dollars — and the company’s phone is now disconnected.
Lisa Wheaton started looking for a dating service after she divorced a man she said abused her.”Came home one night and beat the crap out of me and he was gone the next morning,” Wheaton recalled.
Wheaton then found out her ex-husband had a criminal history, including an incident of assault.So after her divorce she chose a dating service that ran background checks. She chose Two of Us in Grand Rapids, the same company Target 8 investigated.
“I went ‘Oh! Oh my God, they’re on the news!’” she said.Last year, Target 8 met Elizabeth Labine, who sued Two of Us and got half of her money back. “I just remember feeling very pressured,” she said at the time.
Labine paid nearly $3,000 and only went on two dates.Wheaton paid more than $4,000 and only had one date in the past year.
Last year, Two of Us Vice President of Operations Ethan Baker said the company was not running a scam.
Now, at the office where Target 8 interviewed Baker in May 2012, the Two of Us logo remains on the window, but the office is cleared out.
“I thought, ‘Holy crap, I have a whole year on this contract to go and they ripped me off,’” said Wheaton.Baker emailed a statement confirming the company’s Grand Rapids office closed and that “all members were notified via email or mail, and instructed to contact Matchmaker Michigan,” another local dating service.
The full statement.
“Two of Us Grand Rapids closed its doors and transferred all members to Matchmaker Michigan, another local dating service. Matchmaker Michigan has taken over the servicing of these members. All members were notified via email or mail and instructed to contact Matchmaker Michigan.”
When asked why the office closed and if patrons would get their money back, he wrote back: “No further comment.”
“I’m flabbergasted that they ripped me off of all that money, and I want it back,” said Wheaton.The Michigan Attorney General’s Office is looking into Wheaton’s complaint.
Swiftly done! Now Taylor is dating Ed Sheeran.
TAYLOR Swift and Ed Sheeran are dating – according to US reports.
The couple, who secretly dated last March before breaking things off to focus on their careers, have rekindled their romance.
They are said to have grown close after 23-year-old Taylor split with One Direction star Harry Styles – and Ed, 22, got a tattoo on his arm in tribute to her album RED.A source said: “Taylor’s always loved Ed to bits, he’s just an adorably, sweet guy who makes her laugh and feel really confident whenever they’re together.
“Yes Harry had that irresistible bad boy thing but Taylor’s realised she’d rather give it a go with a guy who makes her laugh.
“Taylor and Ed spent the night together before the Brits at her hotel. They stayed up talking and putting the world to rights until 4am and by the end they were a couple again.”
Ed, who is supporting Taylor on tour in the US this year, has had the utmost respect for Taylor – praising her in interviews at every opportunity.
He rushed to her side when she and Harry split in December.A source added: “She made it very clear that when they go off on their tour she wants him to be her boyfriend. He’s thrilled because he’s always thought she’s amazing.
“When they split last year he always hoped if he played his cards right and just kept being her friend they’d get back together.”They’ve both vowed not to have a nasty break-up and no matter what happens they’ll stay best pals like last time.”
Charlize Theron, Alexander Skarsgard dating: Hottest couple since Brangelina?
Finally, a couple that can give Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie a run for their money. Professional pretty people Charlize Theron, star of the upcoming “Snow White and the Huntsman” (and a new mom), is reportedly dating Swedish actor and “True Blood” star Alexander Skarsgard, according to various reports.
Evidence? The New York Daily News reports that Theron rested her head on Skarsgard’s shoulder with hanging out with friends at Los Angeles’ Soho House and “looked couple-y.”
Theron dated Irish actor Stuart Townsend for nine years before splitting in 2010. In 2011, Skarsgard broke up with Kate Bosworth after dating for nearly two years.