These days, sex runs rampant throughout TV, movies, and generally every aspect of pop culture. Some TV shows ("Sex and the City" was a personal favorite), songs, and plenty of movies go into far more detail than I care to on the topic of sex. (Remember the good ol' days when men and women slept in twin beds in the same room?)
When it comes to looking for a serious, committed relationship online, however, sex and your online dating profile should not mix. Consider the two like oil and water, pickles and ice cream, toothpaste and orange juice. you get the idea. In mostly innocuous ways, people imply sex in countless profiles that mention cuddling by the fire and massaging each other. While cuddling by the fire may indeed sound lovely, your profile is meant for you to talk about your hobbies and personality and what you're looking for in a partner. Who doesn't like a romantic cuddle session? All that line does is take up extra space on the page when you could be using that prime real estate to win someone over with your wit and charm. Plus, I don't know about you, but I personally wouldn't want someone I don't know creating a visual of me cuddling on the couch in my cozy pajamas and slippers. Creepy!
Then there is the other extreme: explicitly mentioning sex in your profile. Unless you're looking for a predominantly physical relationship (which, of course, some people are), this is an easy way to turn someone off who might otherwise have been interested in you.
Below are some real, unedited (for the most part) examples (taken from multiple online dating sites) of profiles where the "sex talk" is simply self-defeating:
"I like fishing and travel and sex."
This was the first line of a man's profile!
"I recently ended a faithful, 12-year marriage because I was unhappy with OkCupid.com intimacy and sex."
TMI, anyone? This line also makes the reader question whether he or she would be good enough in the intimacy and sex department.
"To be clear, uninhibited intimacy means I want a woman who enjoys cuddling up, flirting, talking dirty, and giggling in the arms of a man. I want a woman who simply loves having sex with a man. I want a woman who enjoys receiving oral sex.."
It went downhill from here. I spared you - trust me.
"I think it is important for the sake of compatibility, so I am leading with this: as it turns out, I prefer to be somewhat dominant in the bedroom. So yeah. There it is. I just wrote that, just put it right out there lol. :)"
Is his name Christian Grey? If not, then this line is completely inappropriate.
"I am looking for someone who is ambitious as I am, and has strong morals and family values. Someone who shares the same goals in life as I do. Oh ,yeah, and the sex has to be great too! ;)"
This one starts out with such promise.
"Simple, down to earth, compassionate, confident, romantic and loves to see ladies in nicely fitted tight/painted on jeans look."
This is a more subtle, yet still pretty graphic, way of implying something sexual.
"When dating I like to spend Sundays in bed making love. I tend to think I am okay at it. I am also generously endowed, (Dear Readers, Can't print the analogy.) This white guy can hang."
I couldn't make this stuff up if I tried! So wrong on so many levels. And if you're going to be that disgusting and politically incorrect, at least write it in proper sentences!
Sex is an intimate thing to be shared between two consenting adults, not an entire online community. So try to leave the "sex talk" in your mind and off your profile. It's not until you know someone well enough that you should invite her or her to hear your thoughts and eventually participate in them.
— MCT news service. Erika Ettin is the founder of A Little Nudge, where she helps others navigate the often intimidating world of online dating by writing unique profiles, helping to choose the best profile pictures, writing one-of-a-kind emails to get someone's attention, and planning dates.