This is probably one of the most daunting aspects of using internet dating agencies. Once you've made your virtual conversations you need to move to the telephone for the relationship to go any further. But how do you start a conversation?
Trying to be natural and relaxed is a good start. No-one expects you to have them in stitches for the whole of the conversation and no-one's expecting you to tell them how you split the atom! Be normal and be yourself. Dating agencies can't do this bit for you - you're flying solo from here on in!
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If you've been communicating electronically for a while then you may have amassed plenty of material to talk about - not only the things you have in common but also the things you know nothing about but are interested in. By being interested in things that other people do, even if you don't know anything about them, is a good way of expressing your interest in someone. This is also your opportunity to secretly check out how honest your potential partner is. Does his or her story check out? Remember that someone can spend hours thinking about how to best respond to a written message but on the phone there's no hiding place and the reactions you get will tell you a great deal about the person. Remember we suggested keeping a list of all the important points that had come out in the messages? Well this is another opportunity for you to use it to check out their story. If there are huge inconsistencies then you probably don't want to continue with the relationship any further. Do not challenge your date on any points - just log them in your memory and decide how honest your potential partner is later.
You don't have to make it a long telephone conversation. If you get on extremely well then it may last for hours though! If it's gone well then you might be bold enough to suggest meeting up but it's for you to judge how it's going - perhaps you need to talk on the phone several times before a face-to-face meeting. All online dating agencies advise you to be on your best behaviour but you must be natural. Getting tongue-tied won't do you any favours but if you are yourself then you should have your self confidence about you. It's usually only when people are trying to be something that they're not that they get themselves into difficulty. Remember, this person might become your soul mate. Don't try to make them fall in love with something that you're not!
Next - Getting together after getting to know each other through your dating agency.