How to Bust a Double Dipper

Just when you got the courage to put your profile online, someone cute comes along who piques your interest. But rather than celebrating the glory of your online match, after a few live dates your gut starts telling you that your newfound paramour may be up to no good. Don't ever ignore your internal alarm system! Chances are good that your conscience is telling you something that your outer senses may be overlooking.

How do you know if your new sweetheart is double dipping? Here are a few red flags you should consider before you let things get too serious.

1. A Profile Minus the Picture: The only thing this reveals about the person on the other side of the screen is that they have something to hide, and sometimes it's more than a receding hairline or expanding waistline. They may not post their picture because they don't want others to know they playing the dating game. Now they may spin tall tales to steer you off their path even after you've already met but don't fall for the story. Just wait until those images are uploaded.

2. Remote Rendezvous: If meeting in dark and secluded places becomes a pattern, consider it warning sign number two. It's easy to get swooped up in the romance of it all but a promising relationship should keep you front and center. Just remember "no one puts baby in the corner" unless perhaps they are on the dodge.

3. Strange Scheduling: Work, friends, family and play --- it's a busy world we live in. But if your new honey is often busy on weekends/holidays, or has to leave unexpectedly and cancel plans last minute, you might be right to have a suspicious mind. A no-excuses date may be in order so you are not left hanging or doubting their whereabouts.

4. Panicky about Phone Privacy: Telephone etiquette is one thing, but be on high alert if the person you are dating (a) avoids taking telephone calls when the two of you are together (b) has programmed you into their phone under a business name or some other inconspicuous name (c) does not give out a home telephone number and (d) leaves the room whenever the phone rings. After all, at a certain point in a relationship house calls should be welcome.

5. The No Friends or Family Policy: One should never expect to meet the parents on date number two, but if after months of dating you still have not met a single friend or work colleague then it might be time to put this relationship to rest. A closet courtship is no way to start a new partnership.

Even in the best scenario, if you discover someone you are dating is legitimately single, you'll still have to figure out why this person is triggering such feelings of distrust. Instead of wasting time playing detective, start figuring out if your intended is worth the time and emotional investment.

By H. Howard for


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