<br />Please make sure to get your friends to vote on this latest poll. Thanks!
Interesting… Most of you either were excited or were wondering what the heck you were doing there. What does it all mean?! (God? Hello?)
Anyway, I’m putting a new poll up in the sidebar now. Be sure to answer it!
Someone found my site yesterday after searching the words “how to use jdate.”
My first reaction when I saw this was that I should write a user’s manual for the Jdate user. My second reaction? “God, I wouldn’t know where to start!”
I guess rule number one would be:
Use as little as possible
Jdate is so quirky and expensive that I use it as little as possible.
Look, I cannot deny that Jdate offers the most important thing. Namely, a huge database of single Jews. But at the same time their site is based off technology that is so painfully outdated and buggy that it’s shameful. I mean, if the site were free, I couldn’t call it shameful. But for 129NIS/month?! The site has quirks that go beyond fair considering it’s a paid service.
Jdate is not compatible with Chrome and I doubt it’s truly compatible with any newer browser (should we all be using Internet Explorer 6, dear Jdate?). The chat is so wonky that almost any chat I have with members begins with, “Oh, one second. I can’t see anything. Wait…. Oh, did you write something? Ah! Was that a smiley? Ugh. Jdate chat sucks.” “Yeah, I hate it too.”
(Does make me wonder how much of it is that we love to hate it :)
Get ready for a joy ride when you use the Jdate chat
When I chat on Jdate in Chrome in Hebrew (I am not sure which browsers have this itty bitty tiny, inconsequential quirk), the conversation is shown backwards. I bolded that in case you wouldn’t believe me if it was in regular font.
Yes, the words show in backwards order. I know, that’s better than if all letters were backwards but, needless to say, this is quite the ridiculous experience.
Ah, you need an example? OK fine, here you go:
So, I write:
שלום. שמי דינה. מה שלומך?
What I see after I click enter is:
שלומך מה דינה שמי שלום.
It could drive the most patient of women crazy (and I am not one of those patient women!).
Have both .co.il and .com open simultaneously
Don’t forget that when you’re logged into the Israeli version, you can’t read the free text sections of people’s profiles who are using the .com version. And yes, visa versa.
You can read my post about this issue here. Interestingly, they seem to consider this a totally legitimate quirk for a service that costs 129NIS(!) a month. (No, if I ever pay you, it will not be for more than a month at a time so I don’t care about your cheaper prices if I pay you for three or six months.)
What most infuriates me about this huge bug is that they seem to think it totally fine not to actually mention this problem in any noticeable spot. This fact infuriates me more than anything else about this problem. It is probably this in itself that makes me feel like it’s almost my duty to spell out their quirks for them. If they at least openly acknowledged the issues they have with their site and if, ideally, they admitted the need to look into upgrading their site, I would at least be able to respect that and possibly even give them my money a little more often.
Think about it… I have put a lot of effort into my profile and yet, since I signed up through the .com site, so many Israeli guys probably see my profile and just move on because they see me as not serious, as someone who couldn’t even take the time to fill out her profile.
The fact they let us use their site for years without a word about it in a prominant place (I don’t know if it’s mentioned anywhere in the “small print” of the site)… That they’ve never tried to at least have a message show when you’re viewing a profile from one site while logged into another site… The fact they haven’t come up with any solution for this in all this time (I wonder how long this problem has existed and have they given it any thought?)… Unless I hear something other than what I know already, it actually seems very sneaky, to try to get away with such a huge bug in a paid service.
Mute your computer
The chat sounds on Jdate are to die for. Nuff said.
Use it anyway
That’s the crazy part, ay? We still will use it. We all complain about it but we keep using it. Because with such a huge database of Jewish singles, nothing else can compete.
That is why I always push two things:
1. Jewish singles should use OKCupid more and
2. Jdate should shape up and get a freakin’ new site. (I happen to know a great web development company, hint hint hint.) :)
Some other tips for Jdate usage
1. If you want to use it without paying, keep it open and paid members will be able to start a chat with you. If someone tickles your fancy during a chat, make sure to get their email addresses before ending the chat so you can get back in touch with them without having to pay.
2. In general, the more you leave the site open on your computer, the more messages you’ll receive.
3. Really – have both .com and .co.il sites open if you’re using the site in Israel. If it looks like someone wrote nothing in their profile, consider the possibility that you’re viewing it through the “wrong” site.
4. Buy all the extra things they want to sell you! :)
You know, the last time I blogged about the terrible problems with their site, I immediately got a reply from one of their reps. I wonder what they’ll have to say this time. Maybe they’ll tell me they’ve begun development on a new site????
Anyway, considering the status quo of Jdate, what else would you recommend keeping in mind while using the site?
P.S. Haha. Just to prove how active Jdate users are (and how many there are), I opened up the site while writing this post in order to check something out (you know, pure research) and I received two new messages during that short time. See why people use it?!
P.P.S. Don’t actually turn off the sound or else you’ll never hear if someone is trying to start a chat with you.
Image by Allison Joy on flickr.
I’m available again. And with evening here and too much time to think, I’ve reopened jdate in one of my Chrome tabs. I’m flipping through the list of men who have viewed my profile in the last while. And then I scroll through the results of guys from a half-ass search I did.
And then I think about one of the guys whose profile I recently read. He wrote something like this:
I admit I’m addicted to this site. Being able to skim through all these girls’ profiles, most of them attractive…
I don’t think I’ll ever understand him. Where’s the pleasure? Looking at people on your screen who are composed of 2D pictures and a few sentences?
I use online dating a ton. I find it the best way to date for me. But I don’t like it. I am far from addicted to it. It is a means to an end.
Someone else wrote in his profile that the dating process sucks.
Now that I can relate to. We’re not here for the coffee. That cup of coffee some of you think isn’t a big deal? Well, we aren’t here for that coffee so it’s not a selling point.
We’re here to find that special person to be with. And until then, we’ll keep coming back. Because it’s a great tool. Period.
Photo by CarbonNYC on flickr.
I normally passionately avoid singles events but just attended one anyway (because it was a classical music event). Here is a play by play of my single event-going experience*:
- Deciding to go: I debate going though I know I probably won’t meet my beshert there. I also consider the fact that these events usually bring up the “I am nebach” feeling. Is this a good idea?
- Leading up: I RSVP yes and then proceed to question my decision any time I think about it. Mainly I try not to think about it. I receive email reminders (just when I was succeeding in not thinking) and have mixed feelings about the organizers and my feelings that I am their chesed case. Yuck.
- The day of the event: I consider backing out (so what’s new?). I get ready to go. I am very nervous. Should I invest in how I look or maybe it’s better not to? More or less makeup? What messages do I want to (probably failingly) give through the clothes and make up I choose? I look in the mirror and leave the house. (I consider backing out, in case you couldn’t guess that.)
- Arrival: I walk up to the event and start glancing in different directions. I feel overwhelmed. So many guys. So many girls. So many singles. A small dab of very married ladies are walking around. I meet a friend at the entrance and try to pretend this is just a regular music event but of course it doesn’t feel like that. The “We are all single” energy is poignant. The “Lets get you guys married already (nebach),” energy is just as poignant. Or maybe I’m just imagining it?
- Enters Deena: I head into the lion’s den – walking straight into the room full of very single people (plus a few very married ladies). I can’t decide where to look. Straight ahead? Around at the people? I am nervous of the commitment involved with making eye contact with someone (God forbid). But, I think to myself, would I be happier if I ended up speaking to no one of the opposite sex the whole evening? What if I just hung out with my friends the whole evening? Would that really matter?
- Program: The musician begins. She is pretty, (and (very) single) and a very talented pianist. She entertains us well. I convince myself that maybe this is just like a “regular” event. But we all have name tags on and we all know the truth so, lost cause with that attempt…
- Uh oh: After the music is over, my anxiety rises. Shoot. I know something is up because I’ve noticed that each person’s name tag has a small coloured sticker on it. That can’t be a good sign. Make a run for it?
- Playing games: They split us up into two groups to play Taboo. I slip off to the side (of course).
- Make a shidduch: One of the organizers (who I know) pulls me into the kitchen to tell me about one of the guys there who she’s thinking of introducing me to. I tell her that actually I’m not emotionally available right now. When I leave the kitchen I check him out anyway (for the dreaded scenario that I may one day need to go on another first date with another guy). Mental note about the guy: Cute. And: That’s about all I know.
- Random convo: It just so happens that that same guy comes up to talk to me (while I’m avoiding Taboo). We have a thoroughly random conversation. He ducks away when my friend comes up to talk to me. Phew. (One less fish in the sea, I think.)
- Women: I hang out with women the rest of the evening, which is lovely and fun. I play Scott Joplin on the piano. I leave soon after.
- Sigh of relief.
It’s no simple task attending a singles event. Hats off to those of you who do it.
*Single event planners: This is a window into the experience of being on the other side. Please try not to take it personally.
This week has been a very quiet one for me and HaBitza. I think we’re still on speaking terms but I had a few things rattle my world. Nothing terrible, thank God. I’ve just been occupied like crazy, dragging myself around and dealing with some really exciting emotional roller coasters.
What’s worse, dealing with your own emotional roller coasters or someone else’s? :) These were my own.
But I learned some great things from everything I went through this week. Here are some of them:
- You need to make sure not to have too high expectations of yourself. If you do then you’ll kill yourself from worry, always wondering how badly you’re doing. One sister told me the basic things she thinks children need from their parents/caregivers and I could see how she was right and how if you believed that those were your basic responsibilities, then you would be generally more calm and a better parent.
- My beshert has to like me. And the best thing I can do is not try to push myself on anyone. Not try to convince anyone to like me and not continue being with someone who doesn’t feel like being with me. This week I kept this in mind and distanced myself from someone when I needed to because if he was so uninterested in me, it did not matter at all all the potential I saw between us. The potential I saw could only have actualized if he saw it too but for him it didn’t exist which meant it didn’t exist at all. Now, though I’m sorry I had to go through that, I am so happy with how I dealt with it.
- Distraction is great. When things are upsetting, sometimes it’s best to give the upsetting thoughts a little bit of space and then distract yourself (or whoever it is that is upset) with other, lighter things.
- What I go through with dating is really terrible. This week one of my sisters experienced more closely what I go through in dating. After it ended with a guy and I said of the experience, “It’s terrible,” she agreed and she said that she never realized just how hard it is but because she went through it with me more closely (experiencing the excitement, the disappointment, etc.), she saw how hard it is.
- I need a guy who can really appreciate my religiosity as opposed to just being willing to live with it. Religion for me is such a process. It hasn’t been an easy one at all but I know I’ve been so conscious of it, made serious decisions and I am where I am for very good reason. I of course experience guilt because I was brought up believing that anyone who didn’t fully keep the Torah was sinning, but I know that I am where I need to be. I can’t be with someone who looks down on this at all, but instead the opposite. Respects it.
- Sparks… I do not believe in the need to experience sparks in the beginning of a relationship. But it’s also not my place to try to convince someone else that a lack of sparks is OK if he believes otherwise.
- At SuperPharm they have these adorable notebooks for sale for 10NIS as a fundraiser for Type 1 Diabetes. Totally cute.
- When you push yourself and get through it and grow from it, you feel better about yourself than before. Well, at least temporarily.
Did you learn anything exciting this week?
Today I woke up so depressed. I got up thinking, How am I supposed to continue on? I want to be in a true, deep and meaningful relationship so badly, it hurts. As much as I might be living a meaningful life, I can’t think of anything that could make up for this huge gap.
I also can’t think of anything I can do to make this happen faster than it’s planned to happen. I have no way to know when it’ll happen, if at all.
I walk around smiling, maybe a large majority of the time basically happy. Sometimes really very happy. But this is what I want and I miss it painfully.
A HUUUGE lehavdil, I just watched a 3 minute video on TED by Stacey Kramer called “The best gift I ever survived.“
I dunno… What to do… I really don’t know.
Friday was a very sad day. I started in a sad mood – I think it was about my latest dating “thing” which traumatized me (I hope not too much though I see myself feeling more scared than ever for the next one – more about that soon, I think) and left me feeling so unhopeful. And then, when I got back from yoga and doing some pre-Shabbat food shopping, I saw the white and black signs all over our building signifying that our dear neighbour passed away.
I came upstairs crying. I was sure my parents would have known already but it turned I was the one to break the news to them.
I went to the funeral with my father. At funerals I try desperately to wrap my head around the idea that every single one of us will have our bodies put in the ground and covered with earth. Unfathomable.
At the same time I am thinking about a couple of different experiences I’ve had over the last couple of weeks with a couple different people. In both cases, the situations are such that it is not in my control to settle things with these people.
I cannot tell you how much I hate that. I want to be, at the minimum, OK with everyone I deal with in this world. As my sister Devora put it, you don’t want to feel like you have to cross the street when you see them coming from the opposite direction.
And the fact that there are people from whom I need to move on and admit that I’ve done what I can and I’ll never make peace with them (at least not until something really major changes – whatever that is), is also something I have the hardest time wrapping my head around.
I am so sick of people hurting each other, especially in dating. The amount of misunderstandings going on and people not talking them out is appalling. The amount of selfishness or self-centredness is sickening.
You know what? Honestly, whatever your other goals in life are, if one of your top goals isn’t to be working on being more and more of a mensch and making sure to treat people properly, I’d highly recommend you consider going to live all by yourself on a mountaintop somewhere.
It’s just wrong to leave victims behind you. Yes, I’ve left victims behind me but I know that I put so much effort into being a sensitive person and I push myself so hard to do things that are very uncomfortable for me because I feel like it is my responsibility to not leave victims behind. And I don’t know how to live with the fact that so often it seems like other people don’t seem to give a second thought to the victims they are leaving in their wake.
I know I’m being so judgemental which in itself isn’t cool. How can I know what other people go through (I feel a blog post on trauma coming up which is more understanding towards misbehaviour if it’s a result of past trauma)? But when I am hurt and I hear about other people getting hurt, I am appalled and I want to figure out how to make it stop.
I truly do not understand how people are willing to take all this unfinished business, schlep it around with them their whole lives and then carry it with them to the grave. I really don’t get it.
Each Rosh Hashana (Jewish New Year) is different for me depending on what I’m going through and what my attitude is. Many would definitely tell me I had a serious attitude problem this year because I chose to see Rosh Hashana more a time to point my finger at God than to point my finger at myself.
Don’t get my wrong. I am all about self improvement. And I was very pleased when I had an opportunity over Rosh Hashana to see very clear some of the things I need to be working on.
But in general I am working on myself. So I decided that this year I’d focus on what God should be doing for me.
Ah, so what is it that God should be doing and he isn’t? I think I can honestly say that the main thing I am angry at God about on a personal level is that I am still alone. Every year until now I felt bad to focus on that so much (or on myself so much) and I felt this stressful pressure to make sure to pray for everything everyone might need/want.
But this year my prayers were mainly all about finding my beshert. I said, “Please God send all the good stuff to me and my loved ones but mainly send me my beshert asap.” I expressed my extreme dissatisfaction with my current status and said to God that if I find myself in the same place next Rosh Hashana, again needing to ask for this, I am going to be really angry. (It’s true!) I told Him that He really should stop testing me like this.
I had in mind that this is also for other singles who don’t want to be (single).
Of course afterwards my Jewish guilt and fear got to me and I thought maybe I shouldn’t have been so harsh. Maybe there is plenty of bad stuff I could think about myself all Rosh Hashana and instead of pointing my finger outwards, I could have looking inwards… And I am scared that it is dangerous to talk to God this way. But what is the alternative, to lie?
Shana tova. :)
Photo by purpleslog on flickr.
And here is another piece of wisdom (if I may say so myself)… For the person who is being treated not nicely (we are currently speaking of a case of a guy not calling a girl back in a timely fashion (or at all) after a date):
There is a fine balance between being pissed off and giving the benefit of the doubt.
This post is dedicated to all my dear friends and others who are hurt intentionally or otherwise by people who aren’t taking responsibility for their actions.
Here’s an idea (sometimes my ideas are a bit extreme so this is not for the faint-hearted): If you are that person that only calls a girl back if you had a good time, then maybe you shouldn’t be dating in the first place. If you cannot take responsibility for your actions (going on a date) to the end (calling either way), then maybe you don’t belong in this very fragile and often hurtful game of dating.
Can you tell I’m pissed? :)
P.S. This is written with humility since I am fully aware of my own personal dark side. I know I have hurt people. But what I write here still stands.
There are some topics I stay away from for the wrong reason. The reason being that I have very strong opinions on the topic and I am worried about offending someone. But I am feeling so compelled to write on this topic and considering I had one long-term relationship that ended with a break-up, I feel I can rightfully write about this and you can all just assume I’m writing about myself and not take personal offense.
Really this blog post should be shorter than that introduction above because basically all I have to say is: STOP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Really, what else is there to say when it comes to long-term relationships? No, seriously? What, that you’re still learning about each other? That maybe the issues you have will be worked through outside of marriage and then finally you’ll be able to get married? That you have some very specific problems with each other but you’re hoping that by dating for a few years you’ll finally figure out the solutions? That you’re scared there is nothing better out there so you’re dragging each other along for a painful ride?
I’m so upset about this because it so deeply pains me. I just look at long-term relationshipers and feel such empathy towards them. That feeling of getting older, feeling comfortable yet uncomfortable. Wanting to get married already but feeling something so strongly holding you back that you just can’t do it. Trying to convince yourself every morning and every night that things are good enough between the two of you. Crying and having a freak out any time you do consider breaking up because your half comfort with each other seems more doable than having to go back out into the dating world. And to be alone… And who knows what the future holds so lets just keep this mediocre thing up.
From experience, there is life after long-term relationship break-up. I promise. No, I didn’t say it’s an easy life but in my experience the pre-break-up was way harder than the post-break-up. Of course everyone will have different experiences but the fear of breaking up, the pain you experience for both you and your partner as you imagine going through it, is way harder than actually doing it. And then at least there is hope! I mean, as long as you’re with the wrong person, it’s confining and is like a dead end. The moment you release yourself from that, there is reason to hope that something better can come along.
Of course there is the possibility that you are with the right person right now… What do I know. I don’t know you or your relationship. But if you have lived the relationship responsibly (aka, communicating with each other, trying to work through things a normal number of times, getting help if ever necessary) and the problems persist and they are serious problems, say goodbye, please.
Photo by CarbonNYC on flickr.