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Dear Straight Up! Should I Be Open About My Past?

Author:   |  Published: February 6, 2014  |  1 Comment

Dear Straight Up!


My dating life has been kind of lacking lately and I don’t get to go out much because of work. I’m curious about online dating but I’m not sure what the proper etiquette is when you’re matched with someone you already know. I’m also nervous that it might create unnecessary drama within the Tamil community. How should I approach this?




Dear Curious,


Just because a dating site matches you up with someone doesn’t mean that you have follow up with them. If it’s someone you’ve already met in person and there was no chemistry, then you do not need to express any interest. However, if you are interested in them, then I would try to initiate in person as opposed to online. It would be weird if you send a message via a dating site when you have the means to connect with them outside of it.


Don’t worry about having an online profile creating unnecessary drama within the Tamil community. There are niche dating sites that cater to parents to find potential partners for their sons and daughters. Online dating is still mostly taboo within our community, so I’m sure people are not going to be blurting out that they saw you online without incriminating themselves. Even if they did, who cares? It’s the 21st century and you may have to embrace non-traditional methods of finding a potential soul mate.


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Dear Straight Up!


I’m going on dates with boys my parents have introduced me to. I’m a pretty liberal Tamil girl (drinks, parties, have tried drugs and have had sex). I want to be honest with the guys I meet, but I don’t want it to come off in a way that it might get back to my parents and upset them. How can I approach this?




Dear Worried


I always believe honesty is the best policy, especially if you’re going into something as serious as marriage. However, there are limits you should keep just to protect yourself or if it comes to a need-to-know basis.


Just because you’ve done all of those things does not take away from who you are as a person – remember that. In the meantime, ask questions to find out where he stands on certain issues. If he’s the polar opposite of you, then you know that you both don’t share the same values and mindset. Hence, you are not obliged to share any more about yourself and can move on to the next person.


If these are people that you actually like, let them see who you are as a person. Once you feel that the person has long-term potential, you can start sharing all of the things that you have done. Build that relationship of mutual trust and ask ask ask a lot of questions. Pay attention to how they respond and their body language. Use that as your guiding light to what you should and should not share.


Unfortunately, the Tamil community can be very judgmental. Even though I’m sure many of us have done the very same things you have, we tend to play the moral superiority card and put others down. Use your judgement and only answer a question when you feel absolutely comfortable. If you don’t feel safe with sharing something personal then don’t. You are not obliged to indulge anyone’s curiosity.


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Check out our previous Straight Up! advice columns:

“Dear Straight Up! Should I Look for a Tamil Girl on My Own or Get an Arranged Marriage?”
“Dear Straight Up! My Best Friends are Dating and I Feel Like a Third Wheel”
“Dear Straight Up! My Fiance is Demanding a Dowry”
“Dear Straight Up! My Parents Don’t Approve of My Interracial Relationship”
“Dear Straight Up! I Cheated on My Girlfriend”
“Dear Straight Up! I Have Feelings for My Best Friend’s Ex”
“Dear Straight Up! I’m Not Attracted to My Boyfriend”

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