Science Connection Member Polylogue, part 9
What "successful" members have to say
Synopsis We have included a sizeable sample of comments from members who have been successful in reaching their relationship goals (generally, but not always, this is finding a life partner), because they're all a little different, and they make enjoyable reading. There are, however, a few recurrent themes: (1) Don't give up too easily; it's easy to become discouraged, but it only takes one felicitous connection to make all the effort worthwhile. (2) Keep an open mind. People often find that their eventual true love was not what (or where) they would have expected. (3) Try to respond to contacts from other members, but don't get bent out of shape if people fail to respond to your contacts; just move on. (4) Have a positive attitude and make an effort. To quote one member, "it demands endless humor and patience, it demands faith and hope and work, but eventually there comes a letter or a call or an e-mail and you know this is the right one!".
In summary, to quote one member: "be flexible, open-minded, positive and have fun!".
Note that when members mention "ordering" or "requesting" profiles of other members, this
dates from our
earlier format in which biographical profiles were sent out solely by postal mail.
Tips & advice
- Some suggestions:
- Answer all correspondence, even if you do so in the negative (this can be done gently and politely).
- Acknowledge that not everyone is going to be polite, and don't go into spasms of rejection because of negative replies or absence of any replies to your overtures.
- Meet, in person, potentially compatible people absolutely as soon as possible, because it's too easy to build up false expectations when just being "pen-pals" or "telephone-pals".
- If you visit the other person, observe the rules of etiquette (house-gifts, thank you notes, etc.) and don't overstay your welcome! Always assume your "welcome" is much shorter than your host(ess) might indicate.
- Write to people you find appealing (even if you're sure they won't reply or even if not everything they say is exactly parallel to your own view) and tell them that you find their "philosophical stand on issue X" (or whatever) attractive. You'll be giving them (and yourself) a lift. This whole SciConn search does not have to be all-or-nothing (i.e. "lighten up").
- ... I met someone through Science Connection with whom I would like to explore "life
together" for the
next period. I am actually sorry to finish my membership because I enjoyed it very much. I was
thrilled to discover
so many interesting, like-minded people through your service. One often hears singles complaining
"there are no
(good) matches around" and I am pleased to know now this is not so.
If I were to pass on some of my thoughts to new or old members of Science Connection, this is what I would say: (1) Keep an open mind; (2) Have some courage and trust - enjoy the good parts in the other (and get yours appreciated too); (3) Use humour (particularly when tempted to be over-critical); (4) Be honest - try to say as early as possible in a relationship what you want or what you don't want. At least this helped me go to the next stage!
And two more concrete tips: (1) e-mail is faster and easier; (2) meeting long-distance contacts is always fun, but, unless Cupid strikes, difficult to explore further.
- We recently heard from a member
(mid 40s in age) who reported
"Because of you, I now have this marvelous man in my life who is intelligent, interesting, thoughtful
and considerate." She added some
comments and suggestions for other members, as follows:
- In the course of 2 years, I ordered about 140 bio sheets and I wrote to or was contacted by about 20 people. I've written to more men than have contacted me. I think at most 6 guys ever contacted me. And I wrote to Bill, so keep urging women to contact men - it works.
- I believe that a photo is indispensable. Most men who didn't include one with their bio sheet would usually send one with a letter. And if someone isn't willing to let you see what they look like, you can start wondering what else they are hiding. And for the record, the picture Bill attached to his bio sheet was no great shakes - but he looked "OK" and knowing that I too have my camera-breaking days, I took a chance. And it was worth it. He's far better looking than that photo!
- There is much newsletter chatter aimed at men who want to meet only women 10 years younger than themselves. My advice to the women: honey, if that's what he wants and you didn't fall into his limit, then let him have them. Ignore him and move on. There are lots of other men out there who are not so narrow-minded and you'll probably be happier with one of those! I wrote to several men who were probably very nice, so I think there are more good guys out there. You just need to think positively.
- Finally... I suggest people stop worrying if someone doesn't write back. It means "no". Either they're too busy or not interested. Move on.
- Thanks to you I met someone this year, someone whose path would never have crossed mine if it hadn't been for Science Connection. Please tell other searching members it can work: keep an open mind and put in the time and work & willingness to meet others and magic can occur.
- We're not renewing our memberships this year, for the best of reasons -- we've found each
other through S/C, and we now
have a wonderful partnership. In view of the many member comments about age & appearance, we'd
like to note that Jonathan was 38
when we met, Virginia was 46, and neither of us even knew what the other looked like until several
months into our correspondence.
Falling in love by E-mail (one of us was in the US, the other in Europe) helped us look beyond the superficialities of hobbies, music, cooking, etc (in which we actually differ a fair bit), and focus on the truly important things we have in common: Most importantly, we share very similar values. We both could have compromised in many other areas, but not this one. As Virginia put it (referring to a particular group of people with very different values), "I'd be glad to dance with a *****, but I wouldn't want to cuddle!". We're of like minds on other key "uncompromisable" areas like children, politics, religion, abortion, gun control, etc. We're both scientists (though in very different fields, astrophysics vs. anthropology); this shared experience and subculture helped draw us together.
A few suggestions to other members about how to get the most out of S/C:
First, if you haven't looked at your mini-profile and bio-profile for a while, revisit them and see if they could be improved -- few of us can write perfect prose the first time around. What could you add to it to help give a fuller picture of your personality? Too many profiles read like 30-second TV "sound bites" -- instead, try to convey a deeper picture of what sort of person you are, of your values, of what things are truly important to you. What things have you done which you're most proud of? The S/C bio-profile form is a good guide, or you can "roll your own" to add a unique flavor.
Second, if another member takes the time/trouble to contact you, s/he deserves at least the courtesy of a response, even if it's only a postcard saying "Sorry, but I just don't think we're compatible. Best wishes, (your name)".
Third, if/when you do begin corresponding with someone, E-mail works very well -- it has an immediacy and informality that paper letters lack, and it's much cheaper than long-distance phone calls.
Finally, and most importantly, TAKE THE INITIATIVE -- don't sit back and wait for Mr./Ms. Perfect to contact you! Our initial contact was pure chance in some ways, but in other ways it was more a result of persistence: Virginia had only been a member for a month, but Jonathan had been a member for 4 years, ordered over 300 bio-profiles (usually a big batch of 50-100 once or twice a year), contacted about a dozen members, and had been contacted by 4 or 5. Remember, the more active you are, the better your chances of finding a partner who's truly right for you. And if you've tried before unsuccessfully, TRY AGAIN -- there are new members joining every month, any one of whom might be just who you're looking for. Good luck! - ex-members Jonathan and Virginia
- After my membership expired, I contacted someone whose profile I had requested earlier.
I had not written to him earlier
because he was younger than I was [48 vs. 52]. He had also requested my profile earlier, but had not
written because I lived so far away
[Texas vs. Washington State] and because I had not provided an e-mail address. While cleaning out
my desk one day, I noticed the
bio-profile in the drawer and thought, what have I got to lose? So I sent a short note. After
corresponding for a few months, we met, fell in
love, and were married on New Year's Day! I guess it really is possible to meet the right person
through a dating service. Thanks for
being there! - Ilse and Brad
A postscript: There are hundreds of how-to books on relationships and dating, and many of them give erroneous advice to singles about what to say, how to dress, and how to communicate with the opposite sex. Science Connection members might be interested in hearing about a few books which are less goal-oriented, less self-centered, and less focused on resolving conflicts between partners. They are:
- For Fidelity: How Intimacy and Commitment Enrich Our Lives (1998) by Catherine M. Wallace;
- Beyond the Myth of Marital Happiness (2000) by Blaine Fowers;
- The Good Marriage (1995) by Judith Wallerstein and Sandra Blakeslee;
- Kosher Sex (1999) and Dating Secrets of the Ten Commandments (2000) both by Shmuley Boteach.
Don't give up the search too soon
- I will not renew my membership with Science Connection because last year's membership
successful! Through your organization I met my ideal mate. There are still several issues involving a
relationship to be resolved but we are well on the way to doing just that. I thank you and your
wholeheartedly for bringing two middle-aged, set in their ways "birds of the same feather" together
onto the same
And I would also like to say to all other Science Connection participants that indeed it works; it demands endless humor and patience, it demands faith and hope and work, but eventually there comes a letter or a call or an e-mail and you know this is the right one!
- ... after 3 years in Science Connection, I finally met the right man. He joined in July '96. I
didn't think his
profile was promising, but wrote him as he lives close by. He wrote that he was involved with
someone in an
on-again-off-again relationship, and basically put me off. I e-mailed him anyway, saying that I was
dating a number
of men (quite true), but that I'd like a friend who could help me with my computer.
He called the same night as the e-mail, and our first conversation was 2 hours. We met at lunch the next week (we work 3 blocks apart), and both knew right away that we were in trouble. That was Feb '97. By August we were engaged, and we will be married this spring or summer.
I hope you put some of this letter in your newsletter, to encourage your members to keep trying. I contacted dozens of men through SC, and met about 10, but there was no chemistry, and I often became discouraged. All the conversations through SC were interesting however, I guess that's why I kept at it. With J, the chemistry was immediate, even over the phone, and now life is happier and more full than I ever dreamed possible. Thank you for everything!
- Dear Members,
This letter is long overdue, but we want to thank this group for providing two scientists an
opportunity to meet and to marry.
We were both 55 when we joined. He is a divorced physicist and she a widowed math professor. Both live in New England.
Two years after meeting, we married this May. It has been an incredible experience of music, museums, travel, sailing, weekends in Maine, ethnic cooking, fine dining, and time with family and friends. And while we enjoy all the above tremendously, it is any time spent together that we treasure the most.
So thank-you for the opportunity to meet. We both feel very blessed.
We would encourage others to keep trying when the first opportunities do not work out. In fact, since we met, no other person has contacted us. But it only takes one....especially when it is the perfect one.
Best of luck,
Two very happy former members.
So far and yet so near
- I wanted to write and thank you for your creatively conceived and for me successful
Through Science Connection I met [name and location of member] and we have been seeing each
other and writing
to each other ever since February of this year. We are very well suited for each other, and have so
much in common
that it seems uncanny in so many ways. We both agree that we owe our meeting to the service that
you provide and
we are eternally grateful for that. Our big issue at this time is the distance that separates us. We
thought at first
that it wouldn't matter that much, both being mature (mid-life), and having our own established lives
for us, more or less, without a significant partner. We thought that seeing each other during his
would be enough to satisfy our need for partnership. As it is, our compatibilities and ease at which we
proving more important to us than maintaining our lives such as they are and we are considering
and living together - first me moving to Canada to be with him and then he moving back with me to
the States when
he retires in five years. It all seems somewhat miraculous to me that I would be even considering such
a move at
this time, and truly think that this experience is an opportunity for me to expand my horizons beyond
what I thought
possible a year ago.
I do want to encourage other members of Science Connection, especially those who are discouraged or those who will only look locally for a compatible partner, to think again about how you may be restricting yourself. I encourage you to believe that anything is possible if you open yourself up to seemingly outrageous possibilities.
Our initial contact was made by me. I wrote four letters of introduction to men in Science Connection as part of my New Year's resolution to take more initiative in meeting compatible people after a rather dismal year waiting to hear from other people who would take the initiative to write to me. Three of them were local and then there was [member's name]. For me he represented a kind of fantasy or dream, or just what if this works out, an exploratory possibility, that odd feeling that one gets, rather than a truly serious inquiry. I suggested to him that we write, and I would have been very happy just to hear from him. I did hear from two of the three local men; one said he was sorry that he was already in another relationship, and the other said I lived "too far away" (he was north of the city and I live on the west side). Then there was [member's name], who did respond and wrote a long thoughtful letter that has now led to something very serious and with tremendous potential.
Anne, thanks so much again for helping to create this opportunity for us. It worked!
- Fortunately (for me), I shall no longer need the services of Science Connection. Another member and I were able to connect and found that we were the perfect match for each other. Further, we have made a commitment to each other and will be married in July. If Fate brought us together, Science Connection was certainly the facilitator. First learning about Science Connection through your being interviewed on CBC, I was impressed by the manner in which the process of "connecting" was handled and felt that, at least, I could meet like-minded individuals and possibly develop friends. Our relationship progressed through several exchanges of correspondence (by traditional post) so that our first encounter in person was very comfortable and stress-free. This, obviously, led to further meetings in spite of her being in [location]. We have found no difficulty in overcoming the distance between us, much to the delight of [phone company names] and Air Canada.
- I have had a wonderful 2 years with this service - corresponding and meeting a few
people, but primarily reading the
monthly listings and fantasizing about the possibilities of meeting the love of my life.
This past February, a fellow member contacted me. Since then, we have emailed, written, exchanged photos and audio tapes, telephoned, and visited with one another. We know we have challenges ahead of us, including the 1400 miles that separates us, near-grown children at both ends, and long histories with ex-spouses, but with joyful anticipation, we have made commitments to follow our dreams in the company of each other.
Thank you for your part in beginning our relationship.
- Just want to report my engagement to a man I met through your service. I had his profile
for a full year before I had the
courage to contact him! (Not a moment too late.) Anyway, we've carried on a wonderful, long
distance relationship for a little over a year,
and now we're thrilled to be looking forward to a future together!
So I encourage present members to act now!
Thanks a lot!
- ... I canceled my subscription last year to Science Connection with a note that said I had
been disappointed in the responses I
received. At that time, I had decided to no longer write to the last of the friends I had met through
your organization. He had been a very
interesting correspondent for over a year, but had backed out of a planned meeting the month before
and I had decided to put him down as
just one more of those "unable to commit, even to a meeting for coffee" kind of guys.
This letter is an addendum to that note. Jonathan, that "uncommitting kind of guy", is now truly the love of my life. He continued to write to me and I decided that even though we were (obviously) never to meet, I truly did enjoy our email conversations about life, the world, and why there might be hope for both. Last fall he suggested a meeting and, well, the rest is history.
Long distance romance has given us both an opportunity to expand our imaginative capabilities and we are managing quite well with an alternate visit system. That is, he flies down here on the odd months and I fly up there on the evens. Our friendship has given us a strong foundation on which we are building something quite unlike anything I've ever experienced. I won't bore you with details. Just know that he is pretty darned wonderful and I am so very appreciative that Science Connection opened up the doors between us!
So! Please add one more success story to your credit and accept my gracious thanks for bringing such a wonderfully exceptional man into my life.
- Please add my name to your inactive list and include me in the next assessment of your success rate as being wildly successful! I began correspondence in March 2000 with a woman in California... It was clear from the beginning that not only did we have many interests in common, but that our values, desires, dreams etc. matched perfectly. The more we wrote, the closer we became. The relationship progressed to phone calls, then finally a vacation together. The rest is history, we're now engaged and I will be moving to California to begin a new life with a wonderful woman. Thanks so much for your service. My advice? -- Write letters. It's a dying art, but a very intimate form of communication unmatched by e-mail. Then respond promptly to keep the flow going.
- I'm currently in a relationship with a Science Connection member whom I first contacted
about six months ago, and we are
optimistic about its prospects and anxious to start thinking about being together for the long-term.
I can say now that Science Connection has done two things for me. The first was to give an opportunity to meet new people, to take some chances, and remind myself that I should learn from everyone I meet, regardless of whether I consider them a compatible match.
Secondly, what I've gained is a complete re-evaluation of my preconceived notions about my future mate. In the Science Connection newsletters, members have commented on a wide range of details for meeting someone compatible, ranging from issues of physical attractiveness, age, education, distance, how quickly to rush into things, etc.
For me, the man I have ultimately bonded with is younger than me, somewhat long-distance, and he works in a field that is quite disparate from my own, and none of these characteristics would have on my list for a preferred match before he came along. I find him compellingly attractive not in a typical way, but from how I feel with him and how he tells me that I've changed his life too. So please tell your readers to not only think about what they've put in their profiles, but to imagine what might happen if they found someone perfectly compatible that challenges their relationship dogma. For me, it has been the best thing that ever happened.
Thanks, and best wishes to everyone at Science Connection.
- Hello to the trio (I think there are 3 of you) at Science Connection. Every month when I get your bulletin I think I should write and update you. Life is unbelievably good right now, thanks to your organization and, especially, to two people who reached out - Jack and Susie ... Here are some thoughts that might be of interest to others: When I first joined SC, I thought I'd just sit back and let the letters pour in. Well THAT didn't happen. The respondent to my first overture said he liked my "approach" but that he had found someone special (they spent New Year's Eve in Paris!) and they both were singing the praises of SC. Well, I thought, "It worked for them." So I carried on. A letter here, an e-mail there. Most weren't answered at all. Not cool. Being a student of science and having sat through a basic statistics class, I decided to play the odds and take the "shotgun approach." You all advised me that was a good idea. I ordered about 16 or 18 profiles. Of course when they arrived, I immediately eliminated several. I wrote and talked with someone from Northern CA for a while (4-6 weeks). Being a child of the 50-60s, I can only handle one guy at a time; even on e-mail. But by mid-June, I realized we were not moving in the same direction. On June 16, I wrote to 3 people. One was Jack. Once Jack and I began to write (and here are some tips fellas), he never missed a day - unless one of us was out of town. He wasn't afraid to say things early on like, "I came by the office today [a weekend day] to see if you were there, hoped you would be." He never hesitated to answer the hard questions in a straight forward, honest, and timely manner. He once jokingly asked me if I had taken a course in pointed questions. But he answered. And a tip for the gals: his profile didn't really say much (positive or negative), but I didn't eliminate it. My motto for many years has been, "You won't know if you don't go." (Thanks to Nike in the early 80s.)
- When I joined SC two years ago I was attracted to the group by the low cost of the service and that I would not be "fixed up" by a "match maker". I spent a lot of time thinking about my mini-profile and longer biography and the "image" I wanted to present. When I finally wrote both, I kept them simple, positive and full of little details I hoped would be picked up on (they were). I had told myself that I would keep an open mind and was just as much interested in meeting different people as I was in finding a life partner. I have always had many friends but few "boyfriends". I did not include a photograph with my profile (by choice) as I did not want prospects to be prejudiced by outward characteristics. (Nor have I cared if profiles included them...but to be honest I do look at height and weight!). I was contacted by about 15 men (by letter or email) and I contacted about 5 (by letter or email). I responded to every contact and I received a response to every one of my contacts. As an aside, I write short first letters always respecting that the recipient may not be interested for reasons that have nothing to do with me. I met 6 men including my current partner and someone who I hope will remain a good friend. I was always impressed by the quality of the men I met and felt safe with the contacts. I was never part of any inappropriate conversations or situations. The letters/emails I received ranged from a beautiful one pager to long letters with poetry/photos etc. (longer is not always better!!). My membership in Science Connection exceeded my expectations. What I learned from all this is: to be flexible, open-minded, positive and have fun!
A few more personal accounts
- I am happy to report that I have met the most wonderful person in the world and we are
riding off together into the sunset to
live happily ever after.
I had no idea or expectation that this would happen through Science Connection...how wonderful! I was just looking for pen pals interested in science and maybe a few outings... Wow!
So... Food for thought for the news letter:
Re: To respond or not to respond. At first I did respond to all messages, but that became cumbersome... and uncomfortable. I noticed that some of the people I wrote to did not write back... I thought that was OK-- I figured they were already taken or not interested... I have enough ego strength and self confidence to be totally comfortable with that. I did not think it rude. I thought it saved me the rejection!! So... take a deep breath, and put energy into people that are interested!! We are all bright and beautiful shining stars in our own right and there are many people out there who think so (besides our mothers). Believe me, I found one!!
- I am writing to discontinue my membership early. ... Your service attracts a higher quality group of men than any other service I ever joined and at a very economical price. I especially liked getting in contact with men from outside my geographical area and inside my "poli-cranial" area. Science Connection worked very quickly for me, too. I joined in October and ordered fewer than 20 profiles. Of those, I wrote to about half. I received a reply from all I wrote to. Apparently, [name] and I have our "quirks" and luckily we had met someone with the same ones. For all those members who have trouble finding a good match, I suspect they are doing too much "shopping" and not enough "buying". The group of people in the Science Connection are great.
- Matt, our veteran Washington DC area
event coordinator (and
inactive SC member) announced to us his marriage engagement, with these comments:
And Science Connection's role in my good fortune? Well, I met my fiancee in a little different way than most people would consider. First, it helped that I decided to try my hand at organizing social events for members in our local area because it put me in touch with many people of both sexes. Secondly, one of those events happened to generate a response from the roommate of my future fiancee; they were both interested in a hike we had planned. From that, one thing lead to another and as they say, the rest is...
The key here is that her roommate was a Science Connection member! So, you might say we indirectly met directly through SciConn. Isn't that the way it usually happens: we tend to meet people through a casual meeting/acquaintance or when we aren't looking very hard?
So to other members I say this: go to member social events when you can make the time because you never know who you just might meet! I know that is kind of a *plug* for organized social events, but you DO meet people there in a more relaxed setting, usually with a meal and something interesting to see or do. It just might give your "real" self time to come out for a while?
I know that some of the people who have attended our events only came one time to meet up with someone they previously contacted via bio-profile. This is good because it can take some pressure off a first meeting if there are other Science Connection people around to socialize with. I also see other members networking, even between unrelated fields of work, and some make new friends with members of the same sex. AND with so many professionals in one spot, the conversations tend to be quite stimulating (in my opinion). So I personally feel there is alot to gain from attending events. Ok, I'm off my soapbox, but I wanted to share my happy news and how it came about!
- Thank you also for the interesting ladies with whom I have corresponded, and in some
cases have met, through Science
Connection. Joining was the best investment I have made. Without Science Connection the odds were
vanishingly small that I would have
found the woman with whom I plan to spend the remainder of my life.
As what might serve as advice to others from one who has connected very successfully, reviewing our biographical profiles indicates little commonality other than that our very different careers both begin with the letter p. The only hint that we would have formed such a strong connection is in "What characteristics do you consider important in a prospective mate or friend?"
Thanks again for making our connection possible.
- ...I have found my dream girl! I took a different route from some of the other gentlemen
whose resumes have been so badly
trashed in your feedback articles. I did not ask for a curvaceous nubile young female just drooling to
meet a "young" 70 year old geezer.
Instead, I was neutral about age, ethnicity, height, weight, etc., only asking for a woman who was
"alert, aware, interested, interesting, and
And, sure enough, she contacted me! She and I are now "going steady," so, in fairness to the other sciconnect members, my resume should be indefinitely withdrawn.
I could go on, in fact, about the lack of wisdom shown by these men, who crave a younger sexual partner, at an age when they should be wiser. Those men who are looking for a bimbo apparently think that sex is the absolute most important thing. Weird! Sex will come naturally in almost any relationship, and is not, or should not be, the most important part. Especially at my age. Even worse - suppose they actually get a bimbo! What kind of woman do they have now? And five years hence?
Anyway -- with this as my mini-profile, [member's name] contacted me. My daughter offered me some wisdom at this point: "Dad - I hope you are not caught up in the 'looks' thing. After all, you don't look so great yourself!" She's right! But men are genetically programmed to seek younger females. So, I had to turn that off, and look inside. And what I found was wonderful. That's why I call her my "dream girl."
- Just wanted to thank you for introducing me to what I have come to realize is my
connection first began when I initialized contact with a short, but diverse personalized letter which told
a little about
myself along with my scientific interests, hobbies, etc. Next he responded in turn with a very warm
In the first few months we exchanged very lengthy personalized letters. This in turn led to many long-distance phone calls and eventually to our first date. As soon as our eyes met, each of us secretly knew. Our first date has led to many dates, each of us flying to a distant city to share but a few brief moments in time with the other.
Please let other members know that this can happen to anyone as long as both maintain an honest communication and an innate curiosity and respect for the other person. Most importantly, always maintain a positive enthusiasm for life and the possibilities are endless!
I truly wish everyone in SC as much luck, happiness and contentment as we have found.
- I am writing to tell you that I will not be renewing my subscription. The reason for this is that through S.C. I have met the most wonderful woman. We are so very different and would never have met if not for S.C. We have had some difficulties as any couple would have, but made them work. I also want you to know that I was chosen by Caryn, she sent her bio, she called, we set up a date to meet and now almost a year later we are going to try living together. The other thing I wanted to say is Caryn is the only one who contacted me through S.C., but I decided to give her a chance instead of worrying why no one else contacted me. Than you for being there for us, and one more thing: "luck had nothing to do with it".
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