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What We Women Can Learn From You Guys About Online Dating

06/11/2013 07:55 am ET | Updated Aug 11, 2013

Finding love online, your Mr. Right or Ms. Right, can be raw and cruel. False starts, broken hearts, promises made and then unkept. The phone that doesn't ring. And if it does, there are still the complications of seeming synergies that end up as mismatches in the witching hour. Be it days, weeks or months into that "thing" you thought you had, when it ends, you wonder what you could have done differently, often with no meaningful answers.

Self-matchmaking in cyberspace is a giant vat of hopeful humanity, a slippery slope salted with narcissists, predators, the walking wounded. Sad people. People who have lost the urge to be naked with a new body after decades with someone safe, familiar and, now... gone, to death or divorce.

But wait: game on! There is good news. There are some wonderful, smart, funny, special people out there, one of whom is going to "get" you and see how special you are. How glorious when everything works! The proof is there: so many have, in fact, "met their match." It can happen, if you understand that it's a numbers game, and stay strong in your belief that your time will come and that every NO brings you closer to a YES, as they say in sales.

What alternative is there anyway? Should you wait for family and friends, ministers, rabbis and colleagues to set you up with the perfect blind date? That has not been a viable option for most people for a very long time now, with families scattered, and your closest friends probably in the same boat. Networking is fine -- for business. Sit in a bar nursing a drink... At this stage? Not too many of us can pull that off. So is there a "final answer" and, if so, what is it?

There IS an answer, my friends, my fellow seekers of all genders, and it boils down to one word: confidence. The confidence to believe that who you are -- after a lifetime of becoming you -- and what you have to offer is valuable. That despite the ravages of time you are still beautiful or handsome, inside and out. Not young, but beautiful or handsome. How did I learn this? Mainly from men I met on Match.com. Because, God knows, they believe in themselves. Or, if not, they sure are great at projecting confidence.

I have waited for my first "interview" dates, checking myself out in the full length mirror. Is my makeup perfect? Why could I not drop that last 10 pounds in the last 10 days, as I swore to myself I would do? Why am I a size 8 and not a 2, or 4, or even a 6? Chastising myself for having that delicious (fattening) dessert the night before. I am having a bad hair day; let me try arranging it differently. Are these heels too high for someone who says he's 5' 8" and may be shorter? Will he put his arm on my waist and feel the muffin top above my Spanx? I worry, up to the last moment.

And then... the bell rings, and in walks a man with a toupee that looks like something died on his head. With a belly that looks like he is incubating triplets. With a face that looks like it was age-advanced 10 years from his Match.com headshot. In he walks with a swagger, completely confident that he is God's gift to all women and, especially at this moment, to me. And guess what? Not every single one, but many of those men are so bright, accomplished, funny, warm and generous of heart that the first negative impression loses power.

Or at least, some of it dissipates. Was Ari Onassis a Greek God? Of course, he owned the world, and that makes you quite a bit more attractive. Is Donald Trump a hunk? Melania thinks so. Was Billy Joel the model for Michaelangelo's David? I could go on, but here's the point: a confident man, even moderately successful, sweet, complimentary, attentive, fun to be with, can charm the pants off many attractive women. Also, the smarter the man is, the less likely he is to be looking for a 30 year old when he is age 65, 70 or older. Many of these men do want an age-appropriate partner for their own Act Three; they are just as determined as you are to make it the best time of your lives yet, with sensitivity, compassion and passion for each other and for the world at large.

I asked that date to please make himself comfortable. "Take off your jacket... and, that hat." Of course, he wasn't wearing a hat. I just figured I had nothing to lose. He looked at me for a long time. I thought he was going to knock me out. Then he said, "You're a knockout." And he took off his toupee. We had a great evening. In the interests of full disclosure, he was not yet ready to show the rest of the world his scalp, so we ordered in. And yes, he called again.

I have learned confidence from the men I date. And from one more thing I will share... Gloria Gaynor's song, "I Am What I Am." I play it 10 times before I meet a new man. Go to YouTube and play it for yourself. Dance around while you listen. I promise it will give you the one thing you truly need to ace online dating... come what may, even with those who are hair today and gone tomorrow.

You have got to love these lyrics, girls and boys!

I am what I am
I am my own special creation
So come take a look
Give me the hook
Or the ovation
It's my world
That I want to have a little pride
My world
And it's not a place I have to hide in
Life's not worth a dam
Till I can say
I am what I am

I am what I am
I don't want praise
I don't want pity
I bang my own drum
Some think it's noise
I think it's pretty
And so what if I love each sparkle and each bangle
Why not see things from a different angle
Your life is a sham
Till you can shout out
I am what I am

I am what I am
And what I am needs no excuses
I deal my own deck
Sometimes the aces sometimes the deuces
It's one life and there's no return and no deposit
One life so it's time to open up your closet
Life's not worth a dam till you can shout out
I am what I am

I am what I am

I am what I am
And what I am needs no excuses
I deal my own deck sometimes the aces sometimes the deuces
It's one life and there's no return and no deposit
One life so it's time to open up your closet
Life's not worth a dam till you can shout out
I am what I am

I am I am I am good
I am I am I am strong
I am I am I am worthy
I am I am I belong
I am
I am

I am I am I am useful
I am I am I am true
I am I am somebody
I am as good as you

Yes I am

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