Occasionally someone would send a request to communicate. eHarmony has a number of levels of communication. Once a match decides they’re interested, they can send icebreaker questions. This is where the eHarmony experience begins to break down. You have to pay in order to see the questions, but you don’t know if your match is a paying member or not. So the guys who sent the request didn’t know that I was just browsing, so to speak. (I prefer to think of it as blog research. That's right, I'm sticking to that story.)
It was amazing how quickly some lost patience. One guy closed the match because I didn’t respond to his communication request within the first 48 hours. Not only was I not a paying member, I often went a week or two without checking the email account that was linked to eHarmony. I thought his impatience was a little extreme. I feel sorry for any woman who jumped on that match.
I did eventually reach the communication stage with one guy. He patiently waited 2 weeks after sending the first request to communicate before sending a “nudge”. (Apparently that other guy who was annoyed after only 2 days wasn't aware of the whole nudge thing.) I looked at the patient guy's profile and didn't see any of sign of the firearm fetish that seemed to plague the vast majority of my matches. eHarmony was running a special at the time, so I decided it wouldn’t kill me to go for the 3-month trial. So it was only after I became a paying member who could enter the guided communication phase that I learned that the "patient" guy's wife had left him about 30 seconds before he decided to join eHarmony. YIKES! (BTW, I think someone owes me $60 for the 3 months for which I had to sign up in order to get that piece of information.)
This is another eHarmony flaw. The advertising invites people to join to find the “love of their life.” Very often, the people who are most likely to join are doing so because they have been hurt…very recently. And eHarmony doesn’t tell those who are signing up that a couple of months isn’t long enough to get over the end of a marriage that lasted for decades. Nor are there any red flags for their matches, which would have been nice.
Really, eHarmony should work out progressive warnings for people who are looking for relationships too soon, kind of like the Homeland Security Advisories. They could start with low-key warnings, and work their way up to Code Red. Something like this could work:
Oh my, I seem to have digressed. Back to that one guy I with whom I actually communicated. We sent brief messages back a few times, progressing from guided to open communication (but never exchanging email addresses). It was in the open communication phase that I learned how recently his wife had left.
Then he stopped communicating, and after a few weeks, he closed the match with a canned message, “There’s too much going on in my life right now.”
That was when I decided to take my profile down. What happens when you try to close your account? That's in my next post...