Matchmaking is unique in that the process starts the second you message your matchmaker -- even before you actually meet face-to-face. Asides from the occasional “Do I need to bring anything to the meeting?”, we don’t get many people asking us what they can do to make the most of their matchmaking experience. We want to get an accurate impression of you, but it’s certainly in your best interests for it to be a good impression. Here are five ways to put your best foot forward with your Toronto matchmaker, Hamilton matchmaker or Ottawa matchmaker:
Be On Time
This is for two reasons:
1. Your matchmaker may be meeting several clients in one day. We try to book in buffers for late starts or longer conversations, but sometimes people are only available successively. We don’t want to keep anyone waiting. We don't want to keep you waiting.
2. It’s not nice to keep your date waiting! This is also true of your matchmaker. Stuff happens -- we get it. Missed alarms, work meetings that run long, nightmarish transit being a nightmare, delays, but chronic or serious lateness is a serious red flag. Your matchmaker is paying attention to everything and sometimes behaviours outside of our discussion can hint at potential matching considerations, like a lack of respect for the other party.
Speaking of behaviours we’re attuned to, please don’t be rude. Be courteous to staff if we’re meeting in a cafe. Don’t be disparaging about people around us if we’re meeting in public. Definitely don’t be impolite to us. You don’t need to be sickeningly sweet, but be mindful of how you come across. Don’t be pushy or try to manipulate us. Don’t say anything (positive or negative) about our appearance, especially as it pertains to what you’re looking for in a match. Keep your correspondence with us civil if you need clarifications about something. Mutual respect and kindness is the best way to do all things -- especially when those with whom you’re speaking are paying extra attention to your behaviour.
Know Yourself (But Don’t Go Overboard)
There’s nothing better than meeting with a client who knows what they’re about and who can explain themselves clearly. We’re prepared to do the work of dismantling layers and digging to find out what you’re like, but that leaves less time to discuss what you want and how to best get it. Think about what you might want to discuss in your meeting, but also reflect on who you are and how you present yourself. Is your ideal life so far from your current one that you don’t want to be accurate with us? For instance, do you want to be active with the person of your dreams and go on runs every single day with them...but can't find time to get to the gym right now? That’s something to consider when signing up, and definitely important to discuss with your matchmaker. We’re looking to get a good sense of where you are in your life now, as well as where you might like to be..
Please try to be genuinely open to lots of kinds of people, and maybe do some work exploring why you’re attracted to the more normative or specific things you like. We’re looking for a balance between honesty upfront and willingness to be open in our clients. You can absolutely tell us about your types and patterns in dating, but it’s valuable to look at why you have dated who you’ve dated and a willingness to not discount people outside your history is valuable. Maybe they’re your history for a reason and it’s time to date a wider selection of wonderful people! We’re looking for strong mutual matches, and we have more opportunities to match among people who aren’t focused on specificity. If there are things you really can’t budge on for whatever reason, we can certainly talk about that, but we are attuned to the deeper aspects of matchmaking, such as lifestyle, values, personality attributes and long-term goals.
Don’t Make Assumptions About Matchmaking
Listen carefully to us when we explain the realities of matchmaking. Our website has lots of information about how we match people and we’re also very upfront about what to expect in your year with us in our contracts and our meetings. People nod, tell us they understand, but then many don’t really internalize it. When we say an average of two matches in one year, you think you'll be the person with a match a month. You think you’re special and it’ll be different for you. You are special, but that doesn’t mean that you’ll be inundated with matches immediately. Don’t superimpose your desires as realistic expectations. It might take some time, you might have to make some compromises if you have an especially narrow view of potential matches. You might have one or two matches right up front and then a long gap before the next match…you might go many months without any matches at all. It’s unpredictable because we’re working with human beings, human emotions and human desires -- all innately tricky to wrangle. We set up expectations the way we do for a reason, and we find it really helpful when people take them to heart.
We’re the matchmakers. We’re your matchmakers. We make the matches. Help us do that by respecting and trusting the process and by engaging in it with as much openness and thoughtfulness as you can muster. Not only does it make it easier to find better matches, but it makes you seem eminently more matchable.
--Claire AH, Hamilton general matchmaker and Toronto LGBTQ+ matchmaker