Lovelorn can find objective input on problem online
kevin winter/getty images file photo
The situations may change but the question remains the same. Whether it’s a boyfriend caught cheating or one who isn’t ready to commit, many of us have had to ask ourselves the question; should I dump him or not?
That’s the conundrum Kim Roth’s girlfriend posed a few years ago when her then-boyfriend wasn’t giving her the attention she wanted.
Her friend was left with a lot of unanswered questions, and Roth was left with an idea.
"It lead me to thinking, ‘Wouldn’t it be neat if there was a place on the Internet where you could go and post a few facts about your dilemma and you could get opinions from other people?’ " says Roth, an author from Ann Arbor, Mich.
It wouldn’t be a place to get definitive answers on relationships — if a place like that existed I would probably be out of column fodder by now. This would simply be a place to gain input on one of the hardest relationship questions out there. So in the early fall of 2005, Roth started shouldidumphimornot.com. Since then the site, which was recently redesigned, has had "hundreds of dilemmas posted, thousands of advice posts and traffic keeps going up," says Roth.
Scrolling through the site, some of the online advice posts have all the compassion of a kindergarten teacher while others follow the same acerbic tone Ann Landers was famed for. But no matter what the advice, the online advice givers, like dear Ann, offer one thing our best friends can’t: Objectivity.
"(The online advisers) don’t have a stake," says Roth. "They don’t say, ‘Oh, you should be with this type of person. (Family and friends) often have strong opinions about the type of person you should be with. This site gets around that issue."
Despite the name, the site isn’t just for women. Men can post both their dating dilemmas as well as their advice.
"That is one thing women on the site say they love because it’s just like going to a guy friend and saying, ‘I just want your take on this,’ " says Roth, whose role is more of a moderator than a contributor to the site, yet later admitted if she had a dating dilemma she would post it.
Ultimately, however, the decision to toss a relationship to the curb or continue on should be our own. The advice of others is helpful, but it should only really serve as our roadmap, leaving us in the driver’s seat of where we actually take the relationship. If, in fact, we decide to take it anywhere.
And that is my two cents of dating advice for the day.