I’m Dating Online for the First Time. Can I Wait to Share My Last Name?

August 31, 2012
I’m Dating Online for the First Time. Can I Wait to Share My Last Name?

Reader Question:

I am a professional young widow (41) with two younger kids. I haven’t been in the dating world for 20 years, so I need more basics than what is here. Today’s technology didn’t exist 20 years ago! I am concerned about sharing details of my home or work which could allow me to be Google’d.

Can I wait to share my last name to ensure the guy isn’t psycho? Should I set up a separate email since mine is my name?

-Sara H. (Illinois)

Dr. Wendy Walsh’s Answer:

You don’t have to set up a separate email account because all the dating sites give you a mailbox on their site. Get as much personal info about a guy before you meet him in the real world and do as much Google research as you can.

When you do meet for the first time, make it in a public place. Bring your own transportation. Make sure you give his name and contact info to a girlfriend and set a time to check in with her to tell her you are safe. Make the first meeting short and sweet — say coffee at Starbucks.

This isn’t a first date. It’s just a visual check-him-out. After that, if you like him, you can go on a first date.

And don’t make the biggest online dating mistake of all: creating false intimacy through an email relationship first. It puts too much pressure on that first meeting. Have a phone call and/or coffee soon after making contact online.


No counseling or psychotherapy advice: The Site does not provide psychotherapy advice. The Site is intended only for use by consumers in search of general information of interest pertaining to problems people may face as individuals and in relationships and related topics. Content is not intended to replace or serve as substitute for professional consultation or service. Contained observations and opinions should not be misconstrued as specific counseling advice.

Dr. Wendy Walsh is the author of "The 30-Day Love Detox"" (April 2013). Connect with her on Google+.

Related Topics:
Online Profiles Safety

1 Response

    I like that last point, kind of off topic but the first meet up tip is good. There’s always that built up pressure like this first meeting is gonna make it or break it.

Add a Comment

We're glad you have chosen to leave a comment. Please keep in mind that all comments are moderated according to our comment policy, and all links are nofollow. Do NOT use keywords in the name field. Let's have a personal and meaningful conversation.