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Male Case Study 1: Interview #1–Introduction
I think I’ll call him Tigers Eye.
Read on to get to know him.
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Q1: Let’s begin at the beginning. What kind of man are you? In other words, how do you describe yourself? [I ask him to remove his sun glasses to ensure good eye contact. He resists a little, but removes them.]
Tigers Eye: I’m dedicated when I’m in a relationship. I’m committed when I’m in a relationship. I’m also stubborn, somewhat romantic, but deep down a little hardcore. At the end of the day, I’m a good partner. I love my kids dearly. What I want to say is that I was raised by many women. I try to be a friend, a partner, a good listener, and a good lover, but I’m still learning as I grow older. I’m a guy that prefers family life over a single’s life. I’m a one-woman man.
[He pauses to take a sip of his margarita].
Q2: It’s clear that a growing number of people are choosing to use online dating services. Some people are looking for the person of their dreams to marry and share a lifetime. Many want to establish new friendships. Others are just looking for a date for the night. What led you to consider an online dating service?
Tigers Eye: I wanted to try something new. Online dating seemed to offer something different from a club scene, bar scene, or meeting people at work. I wanted the experience what I had when I lived in New York years ago. I was used to meeting people with different backgrounds and cultures.
Q3 (Follow-up): Were you in a relationship or coming out of a relationship? What was going on in your life at that time?
Tigers Eye: I was going through a divorce after over 10 years of marriage. I was enjoying hanging out with my friends at a favorite local spot, but I wanted something different. I wanted to see if I could experience something different than what I had already experienced. The online dating services seemed to offer me a chance to meet women on my own terms. I really just wanted to talk to women.
Q4 (Follow-up): You mentioned that you were going through a divorce. What was your emotional state at that time?
Tigers Eye: I think I was in a pretty good place. Like any guy [going through a divorce], I felt that I was back out here in the game. I played for awhile. But after some time, I was looking for someone who wanted to be in a committed relationship.
Q5: My research shows that online dating services began in the late 1990s, and the number of services has grown significantly. There seems to be a service available for everyone. What online dating services have you used and which one did you like best? [He makes a call. Yes, in the middle of the interview. Needless-to-say, I am irritated by this. Then, he has the nerve to get impatient because he says it’s hot out here. We’re sitting outside at a café.]
Tigers Eye: I had a few friends who were using Match.com, Singlesmeet.com, Blackplanet.com, and eHarmony.com. One of my closest friends met his wife on Match. I chose eHarmony. I didn’t do serious research, but I did look at free services. On the free sites, I saw that you could blink and wink and nudge or send a kiss or heart or an emoticon of your choice to people. It seemed just a little too childish for me. I liked the eHarmony commercials and the process they described.
Q6: What were your expectations of online dating services? [He sighs and looks off across the street. He shakes his head back and forth.]
Tigers Eye: You know, I really don’t know.