Agony Aunt

Patricia Marie, MBACP qualified counsellor is a member of The British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy, practising in Harley Street, Essex and Scotland. She has many years experience of dealing with domestic violence, relationship problems, bereavement, depression, addictions, post traumatic stress and many other emotional issues. If you have a dilemma, please email

What if the men we meet are serial killers?

Posted by Patricia_Marie
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on Thursday, 26 June 2014
Dear Patricia Marie,

My friend who is single, like me, said she`s hoping to find someone new and suggested we double date.  I thought this was a great idea until she commented that she has been looking on the internet, has already been in touch with some`hopefuls` and wants me to sign up too.

I`m worried about this idea - what if the men we meet are serial killers or married men looking for affairs?

 I dont mean to sound negative and would like to meet a distinguished gentleman, but would appreciate your help and advice before I take the plunge into the unknown.

Patricia Marie says...

Meeting someone on the Internet is no different from meeting them in a bar, or at a party. It's only  when you meet someone through friends, family, or at work that you might have the comfort of knowing their background. But even then you can't be sure the person you meet is genuine.

Try not to be so fearful of internet dating, it has many advantages. It can be exciting to get an email saying you've had 20 views. Of course you may not be attracted to all, if any, of them, but it encourages you to keep going, thinking there could be someone better next time. And of course, you can view potential dates from the comfort of your own home.

However, there is striking evidence to suggest the web is causing social change. Traditionally women might have had one or two boyfriends before getting married; now they are encouraged to date lots of people in a quest to find a perfect partner.

The way to protect yourself is to be wise, and recognise the safety rules. As your friend has suggested, for the first few meetings you could double date in a public place. Don't go to the mens houses or invite them to yours until you know a lot more about anyone you meet and can verify what they tell you. Never leave a drink unattended or allow yourselves to be separated, and  ensure you go home at the end of the night together.

And finally, trust your instinct - if one or both of them feel at all suspect, withdraw.  Be sensible and you could find Prince Charming is a mouse click away.

Have a dilemma? Please email  Please note, while Patricia cannot respond to all emails, she does read them all.

In need of further support? Patricia Marie offers a counselling service in Harley Street, contact details as follows
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