Now I've been involved in the online dating scene for a long time - years. To give you an idea, when I first got my feet wet, social sites like Asian Avenue, Mi Gente and Black Planet were booming. Dating sites like Plenty Of Fish and Match were in their infancies. Yeah, that long. Over that time, I've watched online sites blossom from things that people were embarrassed to talk about ("Yeah, I met her in the supermarket checkout line while I was buying some couscous!"), to where people now hold entire photoshoots to get their best pics up and then brag about it.
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In that time, I've learned all of the tricks that people employ to get their best shot. After learning what it means to be a short guy in the date-o-sphere, I've had to make some work-arounds and play up of certain facets of my person to get the best results (hear me out here...). Guys, it's a numbers game, and to reel in the best fish, you have to cast a wider net. Unfortunately, because of the residual effects of heightism, casting any net at all can be quite the challenge. I'm going to show you how I became a master at getting dates, women interested and how I became very happy with the online dating scene. Obviously, there is no attempt here to lump all women into a monolith. This just focuses on the many women that I've had the pleasure of interacting with, whatever the outcomes were.
Lesson 1: Lie About Your Height
Bump it up by one and a half inches. Now I know what you're thinking - "How Dare He!". "If you you're willing to lie about things before you meet, how can I trust him going forward?" - this in particular if you're not a short man and you're reading this. If you are a short man and you're a part of the "I must defend my honor" brigade, you might be saying to yourself, "Why would I do this?". "There is no need to lie and I'm okay with my height". Whatever. Do you and carry on. First off, we're talking about getting a date, not marriage or even an LTR. Second, you don't owe anyone anything because you don't know them! Thirdly, women lie all of the time! The only difference is, men generally don't call women out on it because they're more fixated on getting a date, so they'll overlook most white lies.
What exactly do many women lie about?
I cannot begin to tell you how many women lie about their age on dating sites. What's funnier is that many will act as if they're clueless about how to list their proper age. I can't count how many times I've seen "disclosures" in the tiniest font saying things like, "My page says I'm 34, but I'm really not and it won't let me change my age".
Women Lie About Their Age Often Online | Source: Plenty Of Fish
Really? When you were adjusting the birthdate when you signed up and had to input information in four to five separate fields you couldn't get your age right? Weight is a no brainer. There is no shortage of angle pics, profiles where there are only face shots, or profiles which say "undisclosed" body type.
Uh-Oh! Caught Another One Lying About Age? 37 or 41? | Source: Plenty Of Fish
Dating Intentions are particularly funny because I've come across so many where profiles will say, "If you're looking for a booty call, get off my page", or "I do not do sexy pics". Yet, ten minutes into the conversation, I'm being sent nudes voluntarily and they are the ones initiating sex talk. I thought you were looking for your prince charming? I thought you wanted a serious relationship? Be it pink collar or the educated elite, the outcomes were strikingly similar.
Now why is this? I thought we're not supposed to lie? I thought men who tell lies are misogynist pigs who just want to get laid? Well, just like you, they know very well they're being judged and just like you, they want to cast their net as wide as the sea to catch the fish that they want. Remember, everyone wants the best that they can get or at least the most chances to get it right. Height then is an amazing filter, because as we already know, men under a certain height don't even stand a chance. You don't even need to read the studies either. Spend five minutes browsing a dating website, and it won't be long before you come across the profile of some 5'1 queen proclaiming that a man under 5'10 won't do.
Women Are Very Strict With Height Requirements Online | Source: Plenty Of Fish
Now I am not suggesting lie about your height until you meet up. I usually will preempt the height "issue" by saying something along the lines of:
Me: Let me ask you a question. You're okay with dating shorter guys right, I just had to ask.
Her: What do you mean? I thought you were 5'_
Me: I'm [insert height here]. We're about the same height....
Her: As long as you're not under me, we're fine. Besides I like you a lot, why even ask?
Me: Just asking, I'm confident and good, but I know sometimes women feel some kind of way about that, so I just wanted to put it out there and make sure we're good.
So, does it always play out this way? Of course not! But I can tell you that rarely have I had a woman back down by this point. Even if things didn't materialize in the end, the curiosity, interest and enthrallment were all too high because I was able to lay down the charm and let my pluses shine through.
See Also: Why Short Men Have Just As Much Sex As Their Taller Counterparts
Now, it is important to note that there is some methodology here. As a rule of thumb, this always worked with women who contacted me first (more on this later). Next, avoid women who have height requirements listed on their page at all costs. They're not worth your time. I've had women contact me even though my "adjusted height" is lower than their stated minimum. If I'm talking to women in the 5'2-5'5 range, I make it a point to zero-in on the height issue a few times to ensure they are confident, but always from a point of self-assurance. In my experience, women in the average range tend to be more finicky and polar. They are either with it or they don't care. Figure out who is who. As a rule, I never contact a woman who is taller than I. First off, lying about height to a woman who is significantly taller than you is not a good idea as they tend to be more height-aware. If they do view or contact me first or respond to one of my messages, then I bring up height playfully once or twice to make sure she's confident.
Get Height Out Of The Way Early To Check Her Confidence | Source: My Inbox
If she's contacting you, then she is already aware of the height difference and doesn't care one bit. No reason to beat a dead horse.
See Also: Why Men Should Lie About Their Height In Dating Profiles
Bigger women (thick, curvaceous or whatever they want to call themselves) tend to be more conscious about how small a man makes them look, so I typically avoid contacting women who are very curvy, but if they view or message me first and I find them attractive, I will certainly engage.
Conversation I Had With A Thick Woman Who I Ended Up Dating | Source: Inbox
Now lying about your height online has nothing to do with your own self-confidence and everything to do with the confidence of those potential dates perusing your profile. You know the studies, you know the numbers and you know the odds, so act accordingly. Again, be reasonable. Saying you're 5'10 when you're 5'5 deserves a full five finger smack.
Lesson 2: Be Accomplished
This does not mean having a PhD or Double Masters degree. It does not mean owning several properties or being a touring rock guitarist. This means whatever you do, be good at it if not the best. Be a leading expert in your field or someone others look to for guidance. Aspire for greatness. Not for women, but for yourself. People are drawn to the ambitious and that can only increase your market value. I can't count how many dates where women complimented me on how intelligent I was and how they loved learning from me, or just learning new things in general. Add to that in the many LTRs I've been in where the women would constantly praise how accomplished I am, even when I had little money in the bank. Be cultured, have hobbies and develop talents. How does this translate to my dating profile? I don't brag about my educational achievements, but I definitely check off "graduate degree" and have words like "Educated" and "Accomplished". I also list my interests and hint at my side gigs. As an example, I do voiceovers. If you did landscaping, list that.
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If we like someone, we tend to brag about what separates them from all of the other Joes and Janes out there. It's not necessarily about the money either (you could be a lawyer, but deep in student loan debt). Just as easily as Jane Doe can brag about her date being 6'5, she could brag about you doing Stand Up, trading stocks or being handy around the house, muscular or just very good looking (yes, you can be short and good looking).
Conversation With A PhD Candiate I Was Having | Source: My Inbox
The great thing about being a man is that it is the entire package which counts - that includes your job and social circle. All of that heightens the perception of yourself and can make you more attractive. This is also why as a short guy I stay away from circles or individuals who make it a point to make your height a constant punchline. Don't play the Garmin, as you don't want to be "the guy who people crack on".
Lesson 3: Dress Well
This can mean many different things, but in essence, dress toward your demographic while having your own unique fashion sense. We're all into different types of women. I have my own style and unique fashion sense, but am able to calibrate it slightly so it can better appeal to who I am trying to chat up. As an example, I typically do dress casual, so shoes or stylish sneakers with Express or Levi 541 ripped jeans with a button and blazer would be my approach (make sure those blazers are tailored so your shirt cuffs are exposed!).
Jeans, Sneakers & A Blazer - Works For Most Occasions | Source: Pinterest
Fancy enough to impress, dressed up enough to go out to some place ritzy, but dressed down enough to not make my date feel as if I'm being "too formal". My dating profile reflects this, but I also have a pic with me wearing a fitted hat featuring my favorite team (let's her know I'm a sports fan, though I detest wearing fitted hats regularly like so many people do), a pic of me out with friends, some of them female (social proof), a pic of me in gym attire usually in my gym locker room (despite how many will say they hate shirtless pics, the one shirtless pic on my profile is the one that gets complimented the most), and other pics featuring similar get-ups.
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You will see this same advice spewed on all short guy blogs, but I cannot emphasize this enough - get clothes that fit, get clothes that fit, get clothes that fit. I'm in the "normal short guy range, so I can shop at places like Banana Republic, Express, H&M and American Eagle Outfitters with ease, but every once in a while I still need to hit up a tailor to get the perfect fit or cut. You might even have old jeans or shirts lying around that you picked up because size-wise, you thought that was the only option you have. Need a new pair of jeans? Take those baggy jeans you have and have them tailored. Last week I took a pair of jeans that was too wide around the lower legs. I took them in and got them tapered and ripped with patches sown in behind the rips. Voila! New ripped, fitted jeans for only $18.
Check out the ShortGuyCentral Fashion Blog, ShortGuyCentral Fashion & Style Forum, and sites like the Modest Man and Style Forum for style tips. You need to look your best. Not only will you feel good, but others will take notice in real life and your dating profile will stand out.
Lesson 4: Get In Shape
Look, this is not a body building or exercise blog, so I'm not going to give you work out advice, there are plenty of blogs and websites for that (though if you are reading this and would like to contribute workout advice to short guys specifically, by all means contact us!). What I can tell you is that I've seen countless profiles where women say, "If you have shirtless pics, don't bother", suggesting that guys that do are narcissists. As I said earlier, the first pic I get complimented on is my shirtless pic (watch what they do, take what they say with a grain of salt). I'm not saying to overdo it with eight shirtless pics, but one which shows off your physique, or maybe a shirt that hugs your body (i.e a Henley) will do more good than harm.
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I do notice that the shorter guys I see with girlfriends at the beach in the summer time tend to be in amazing shape. At my gym there is this guy who is a few inches shorter than me. I put him at about 5'3 or 5'4. His girlfriend comes to workout with him all of the time. While I am toned and in great shape, when I see him I get motivated. Why? He is swollen! Large arms, impressive shoulders and people compliment him all the time. When I see him, I say to myself, "I need to step my game up". Again, a great physique will do you no harm.
So what have we learned here aside from how to read a long article? Lying about your height within reason is not a big deal in the online dating scene. On the other side of the pond, the number of women who punch of up their stats by way of lying about their age, their looks through makeup, push-up bras, suspicious camera angles, hair extensions, and body shapers is enormous. They do it for the same reasons you would embellish, and that is so they can fish in the waters they want to reel in the best that they can get. In real life, they embellish to feel pretty, but attracting the opposite sex is a byproduct of that. Remember, you are the prize. Even the plainest jane will receive hundreds of messages a day. As a guy you have to maximize your marketability. Being in shape, dressing well and being accomplished will only help with that and drive your self-assurance through the roof.
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With that in mind, I want to emphasize that I always come clean, and you should consider the same. No one likes their time wasted, and while there is no guarantee that every experience will be pleasureful one, starting off on the right foot is paramount and will keep the ball in your court. With millions of women dipping their feet in the online dating-sphere, everyone will not be for you, but the more you can catch, the better the chances are you will find the right one for you, or the right one for right now.
Now I do realize that my being of a "Normal Short" height (5'6-5'8) has a major deal to with my outcome. For that reason, I will seek out one of my shorter friends in the 5'2-5'4 range and ask him to share some of his dating successes and woes (in real life and online) in a future article. Thanks for reading, and get out there!
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