Number of online dating relationships

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Unfortunately, he'd written an identical e-mail to another woman I knew. A brief, concise e-mail that expresses general interest in your profile and a desire to communicate with you may -- or may not -- be a form letter, but at least it doesn't insult you by pretending to be something else. The only things you will be "missing out on" by ignoring such dating spam are headaches and heartaches.

If you absolutely must respond keep it ultra-short, as in, "You sound nice." No more!

Maybe you're inwardly flattered, but generally you ignore such attention. "Hmmmm" may be Man Code for many things (e.g., "sleeping with you might be interesting," or "I'm bored so please entertain me with witty online banter").

You certainly don't whistle back -- or go and start a conversation! It signals ambivalence and/or arrogance -- not decisiveness and determination.

Winks demonstrate laziness and lack of specific, intense interest in you that will invariably show up later in letdowns, small and large.

But it's far more likely he's e-blasting winks to innumerable women to see what kind of responses he'll solicit.

If you're a thick-skinned, even-keeled kind of girl who bounces back easily from rejection and is really only looking for fun, then the protective measures outlined above may not be applicable.

But if you're a more passionate, sensitive type -- especially one who's "hit bottom" romantically with an excruciating break-up -- and you're not embarrassed to admit (to yourself, anyway) that you'd like to get married, maybe start a family, or at least enjoy a loving, stable, long-term relationship, then maybe it's time for you to try a radically different approach. Wrongs is the vital first step toward clearing the way for Mr.

Keep your replies short and sweet, light and breezy. You're a busy woman with lots of admirers, friends, projects and interests.

If he truly wants to get to know you better -- and you're not available for long e-mail correspondence (or long phone conversations, for that matter) -- he'll have no recourse than to step up and ask for a date.

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