When Does an Innocent Facebook Check Turn You Into a Stalker?

two laughing women with laptop

Many years have passed since the last time one of our readers has been single — approximately 14 years to be exact. As she talks to us, she tells us that technology didn’t play such a major role in the dating process as it does now.

Back then, the only bit of technology that was required to date successfully consisted of a phone that could be used to exchange numbers, call, text, and even play a game of Snake on, a CD burner (or if you’re from a family who was a little late on the CD trend, a tape recorder or a radio with a record function) so you could create the perfect sappy love song playlist, and maybe even a pager (if your parents allowed you to get one).

Back then, if you were going to stalk someone, you would have to get up, go outside, and stealthily follow them around. Or you could be like those creepy stalkers who just sit outside of your window and play that crappy love song playlist. Compared to today’s stalker methods, it took effort, planning, stealth, and maybe even a few bribes — it certainly wasn’t nearly as easy as a few swipes of a fingertip.

The reality associated with modern dating doesn’t just include the smartphone itself, but there are countless other ways to keep up with the person you desire. For example, there are a plethora of dating websites, mobile apps, social media websites; hell, some people even use games to flirt with others! The way that we choose to communicate and flirt with one another has multiplied to alarming numbers.

Our friend told us that she found it very difficult to find someone she genuinely clicked well with when she first began her foray into internet dating. This is when she started receiving advice from others about different methods of meeting singles. Some suggested that she try ballroom dancing, although she was quite skeptical, as ballroom dancing didn’t seem like the kind of thing the men she would be interested in would ever be caught doing in their lifetimes.

Another suggestion she received was that she browses her local grocery store. Yes, while she was out picking up items for her dinner, she would be silently judging possible eligible bachelors on their core values by whether or not he ate organically, if he had too much junk food in his cart, or if he seemed like a well-rounded guy who had a little bit of everything. After trying this for a few weeks, she found that it was much harder to flirt with someone over a couple melons or bananas. The whole situation seemed incredibly sexual, even if nothing was overtly said.

Needless to say, she turned back to technology for help (they always do!). She joined a particular dating app that was much like Facebook where you get updates that log what you’re doing and people who are doing similar things as you become a match. Sounds okay, right? With her parameters set so wide (a 100-mile radius to be exact), she was let down by only having 5 eligible men within that radius. Even still, she met one person but that quickly fizzled out when they both discovered there wasn’t much in common between the two of them.

Deciding to bite the bullet once more, she logged onto her dating profile where she discovered there was a message in her inbox. A genuine message from a guy who said the right things and was someone who certainly piqued her interest.

So, like many others out there who know how to use Google and Facebook, she searched for the guy and found his public profile. After browsing for a bit, she went back to his message and responded, making the mistake of commenting on something she saw on the Facebook but not on the dating profile. Panic set in because she pressed send before she realized her mistake. After not hearing from him for a few days, she was ready to pack up and cancel her profile.

Except, there was a message in her inbox. It wasn’t from a creepy guy or someone who was just trying to make a friend, but it was from that guy. And you know what? The message was short and sweet. It simply asked if she wanted to go out for a drink.

Simple. And Sweet. Perfection.