eHarmony | The 20 Percent

When I first laid eyes on him all I could see was this blinding golden light following him like a shadow.  I’d never seen light emanating from a man before.  Ever.  There he was walking towards me on that dark night, emblazoned with golden rays.  His arms, outstretched, to hold me after months of chatting through email and phone conversations – and me preparing to shove a bottle of water in his hand – because of course, I thought, he must be thirsty after a two-hour flight.

 

Ugh… loss of cool points for that and so many other reasons to follow over the next year.

I was knocked off balance by my desire for him.   He was everything I wanted in a man, mate and life partner.  6 feet 5 inches, 210 pounds of broad chest, strong arms, taut waist, narrow hips, long-legs, funny, kind and a mind that screamed PhD.  Yes, his PhD was conferred to him in, of all things, computer science. It wasn’t just books with him either. When we met, he held about 10 patents related to WLAN… fewer drop calls in the network.  He was the modern-day god of time and space. The new millennium doctor that every mother wanted her daughter to marry including mine.

He would’ve been Mr. Right for some but for me he was Shango – god of lightning and thunder, all for my consumption.

If  only I could stop drooling long enough to get a hold of myself and reclaim my dignity – I could have been his Oshun.   

There’s a lot to be said for curbing one’s appetite.   Wearing emotions on the sleeve, I would later learn, is not a good way to start an intimate relationship.

So, when I finally came to grips with the fact there was never going to be a  “we”; I decided it was time to get over my broken heart and stop whining about my unrequited love.

I marched right over to the eHarmony dotcom and began to answer what felt like a minimum of 50 questions on this sterile website that was a vanilla version of where I first met Doc Shango.

Black Planet dotcom was the perfect website to meet and network with like-minded people.   I wasn’t there to meet a man, I told myself initially, when creating my profile.  I was new in my town and I was ready network in this online community to get real life results. It worked too.  I met an exciting sorority sister who set me up for a great gig.  I met a man from Omega Psi Phi, a national fraternity, who hooked up my social life in Chicago and that led to more opportunities.

I thought I’d be clever and weed out the “riff raff” by posting a law of motion as my tagline

“for every reaction, there’s an equal yet opposite reaction.”

 

Seriously, I thought, how many people know Newton’s third law – let alone care.  Those who were traveling my wavelength would be in the know and those were the people I wanted to meet.  My plan worked too – this man answered with “Newton’s first law, eh” in a message.  I looked at his picture and I thought he’s not a bad mark.  I responded with snark, “Nope. Please don’t tell me the doctor in your handle is for PhD in physics?”

Oh yes, I was so cool in the beginning. So cool and endearing that over the next few months of nonstop letter writing and conversations – he invited me to his family reunion …sight unseen.

I had him.

I declined.

I hadn’t traveled to meet any man and I wasn’t about to start. They traveled to meet me, I told myself.

And then just like that, it was a wrap. He came to me.  I lost control of myself. Eventually, I lost his interest. I couldn’t figure out what happened.

That is until I signed up for an eHarmony profile about a year and half later in 2005.  My results revealed…

a photo of screenshot from eHarmony
Unable to Match You at This Time

eHarmony’s algorithms knew what many of us don’t realize – what we do in our professional lives we do in our personal.  Sometimes those things don’t translate into wedded bliss.

Everyone has a set of subconscious wants and desires that drive their choices and attitudes. ~eHarmony

And those subconscious wants allegedly landed me in the 20% of relationship seekers they couldn’t match.  I did, however, receive an eHarmony’s personality profile report that outlined general patterns of my values in five different sections.   The personality assessment urged those who received the report to use it as a tool for self-discovery.

Here’s one trait that stood out.  One that I experienced in my professional life,  but worked to shield myself from the fallout.

You may be rather emotional; that is, one will generally know how you are feeling, whether good or bad, because you let others know your moods easily.

I got the sense, the 20% were those who tried to control themselves, failing miserably, while their emotions ran amok.  But I digress.

The report provided a rather extensive  snapshot of one’s

  • emotional values,
  • natural behavior,
  • communication traits,
  • strengths and personal characteristics,
  • and basic, subconscious wants.

Of course, when you want to meet someone new you’re not interested in a computer-generated report telling you why you suck.

And although it didn’t,  here it is 12 years later, and like the profile report suggested – now I understand how my personality traits work for me when I’m in control and against me when I’m not.

And a man with a golden aura walking into my life was a sure-fire way for me to lose control and since I’m not Beyoncé, I did my very best to avoid looking crazy in love  and ended up looking just plain crazy.

Trying to control, contain or suppress emotions especially in a closed container also known as the human body is the very definition of an explosion.

Messy.

So instead of shutting down, I release and let go to use those emotions to help me achieve my goals.

Besides, shutting down or trying to control emotions is the death knell to both personal and professional relationships.

Thank You for reading!

3 thoughts on “eHarmony | The 20 Percent

Add yours

  1. Online dating is tough. As though dating alone isn’t a maze, right?! I’m doing my best to navigate. Thanks for sharing you tale and some of the logic (is that the right word…) behind eHarmony.

    Liked by 1 person

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