Dear Tamar,

I am a relatively new member of JDate, the only online dating site I have ever used. I joined about a month ago, and of course was completely bombarded by emails, flirts, and IMs from the men on the site. I have been told by many that I wrote an excellent essay on both myself and what I’m looking for and my pictures are very popular as well. (I work in publication design, so I guess I knew what I was doing!) I was flattered by this unexpected explosion of attention, but frankly, expected it to die down after the first few weeks. It hasn’t. I am completely swamped by the amount of men communicating with me, and frankly, being a single mother who has custody of her child most of the time, I really don’t have enough time to date around. So my question is, “What’s a girl to do?” How do I filter through so many without spending all of my time online or inadvertently blowing off someone who may actually be perfect for me? Help!

Dear What’s a Girl To Do?

I wouldn’t go around bragging about all the attention you’re getting because most people are in the opposite situation. LOL. That said, you definitely need a technique to weed out the JDaters®. Instant messaging can take up a lot of time so if you have your kid that night then concentrate on your emails and save the IMing for the other nights. Next, have a standard rejection letter that you can copy and paste. In it, thank the suitor for his interest and then gently let him down.  But let’s get back to how you eliminate suitors. You can quickly scan the photos and see if there’s attraction. Then read the emails and see if they are well written and include something about you to let you know the guy actually looked at your profile. From there, check out the profiles of whomever is left and see if your preferences match up and if you have commonalities. If you have attraction, are impressed by the email and share interests, then respond to the email and, in it, include your phone number. The guys that call within 2 days are the ones you want to concentrate on, the others are maybes. Finally, you can always write in your profile that you’re looking for only serious suitors. Hopefully that helps!