Meeting people you meet online: Yes or no?

Background information:

I meet a guy online on a gay personals site that speaks German and French. Whoa, I say. That’s really cool! He says that he lives in Dallas, and that he spends about half of his time about an hour away from where I live. That’s neato. I get an offer a few days ago to go meet him at the hotel he’s staying at in Little Rock. I accept, and yesterday, I was on my merry way.

Well, last night my mom calls me, but I was busy, and I did not want to pick up the phone. I call her back a couple of hours later.
Mom: “Where are you”
Me: “Headed back to the dorms”
Mom: “Where were you?”
Me: “In Little Rock”
Mom: “Why?”
Me: I was meeting a guy that I met online. He speaks german and french, and it’s really cool.
Mom: “Oh, how old is he?”
Me: “I don’t know” (I actually don’t. I know he’s over 50, though.)
Mom: “Oh. What did you guys do?”
Me: “We talked, some in German too. It was fun.” (Technically true. We did talk.)
Mom: “Oh”
Me: “Well, I’m driving, so I’m going to get off of here. I was just returning your call.”

Today, she calls.
Mom: “You know, I was really worried about what could have happened to you last night. For all I knew, this guy could have been 50. You said that you didn’t know how old he was… How old did he look?”
Me: “Oh, in his forties, probably”
Mom: (something leading up to this) "Where did you meet this guy?
Me: “In his hotel room. He said that he stays there in the winter because he flies to Dallas.”
Mom: “What did you guys do? Did he take you out to eat or anything?”
Me: “No, we talked. Like I said last night, he speaks German and French, and it was cool.”
Mom: “I was just worried about you. He could have fucked you in the ass and killed you. You were lucky he didn’t. You don’t need to go meet people you see online. It isn’t safe. *continue for 2-3 more minutes.”

So, anyway, as you can see, I didn’t tell the whole truth the whole time, but I figure she probably didn’t want to know, anyway.

How do you see this situation? Do you guys never do stuff like this? I didn’t find it weird before, but now I realize that:

  1. I went to meet a random old guy
  2. I did so in his hotel room
  3. I graciously accepted the wine that he offered me. (In my defense, he poured his glass from the same container, and he drank before I did.)

And I also meant to add:

Have you guys had any bad experiences with stuff like this? Any good experiences?

Well, as a straight girl, I’d never do anything like that. I’d definitely want to meet in public first. However, based on stuff I’ve read on the SDMB, craigslist, and from my gay male friends, it’s not that unusual for gay guys.

I have met hundreds of people in person that I met on the internet (almost all of them Dopers). Only a couple have turned out to be creeps, and none dangerous. The internets are as good as place as any to meet people and better than most, imho.

I met my fiance on a personals site, so obviously that’s a good experience!
I have also met quite a few other people online - some were dates, some were dates that ended up as friends, and some I never saw again because we just didn’t get along all that well in person.

Personally, I wouldn’t have met this guy at his hotel room. I prefer to meet people in person and get to know them a little before I am alone with them. I have been alone w/ people I’ve met online after meeting them in person for only a few hours, and nothing bad has ever happened. Someone you met at a bar can just as easily turn out to be bad news as someone you met online, it’s just that meeting people online still has a bit of a stigma to it.

I’m not sure I’d ever meet someone for sex but just meeting people in their homes or rooms isn’t a big deal. I’ve slept over at four different Doper households over the past two years to no ill effect and have even lived with two of them for a couple months apiece when I’d never met them before.


Only a couple have turned out to be creeps, and none dangerous. The internets are as good as place as any to meet people and better than most, imho.

I agree. You could have easily have just met him at work, a bar, the gym… And the chances of him being a creep are the same as meeting someone IRL. Lots of creeps offline as well!

Ya know, I have had so many people tell me that the internet is such a dangerous place to meet people.
Honestly, I have met a few weird ones through the internet, but nobody dangerous, and so far they have all been better than anyone I have met in a bar.

I met my current SO over the internet, at a time when I had pretty much given up on finding someone that would understand me. Boy, was I wrong! :smiley:

I don’t see anything wrong with meeting people in person that you have met online. I have good friends that I met that way. I would meet them in a slightly more public place than their hotel rooms.

I’m really one to talk, though, considering I’ve taken some boneheaded risks that way. However, I don’t do it any more and I know I’ve been lucky.

As a straight male, if an older woman (hell, any woman) had asked me up to her hotel room, I’d be there in a heartbeat.

So I guess the bigger question is, going to a MALE’S hotel room.

Since the only time you’ll get raped/murdered is when you go to a guy’s place, I’d have to say it was a bad call. :wink:

But then again, you have to weigh the “I wanna have sex!” urge versus the “I’m gonna get killed!” vibe in every situation. Obviously you didn’t have that vibe and things worked out well.

Bottom line: trust your instincts.

And that made it look really bad. We didn’t necessarily meet to have sex. I figured it would happen, but… well, crap. Now it really does look like that.

In my defense, we had never discussed it beforehand, and I would have been content with just friendship too.

My wife and I met online, and we’ll have been married 5 years in April. So good can definitely come from it (FTR, it wasn’t a personals site; we just serendipitously met in a theatre chatroom).

But, a part of me still says you should have been a little more careful about this one. I’m sure you can take care of yourself, but meeting a guy in a hotel room? Did you have any friends who knew where you going to be? Next time, do. Just in case.

And it’s your mother’s right to be worried; that’s what she’s there for, so give her a break. :wink:

Don’t apologize or make excuses. If you didn’t meet for sex, great. If you did, also great. That’s your business.

Just be a little bit careful if you’re going to meet strange men in a hotel room. It might be a good idea to find someone you trust (a friend or relative), and tell them where you’re going, who you’re going to meet, and when you’re likely to be back.

I started making friends online about six years ago, and some of the people I met back then are among my closest friends now. I’m middle-aged, married, and monogamous, so there was never any suggestion of sex or romance with these people. However, my mother gave me the same lecture (although I don’t believe she’s ever uttered a phrase like, “fucked you in the ass” in any circumstance) after she found out that I met a long-time online friend alone at a restaurant near his workplace. It didn’t matter that we knew each other pretty well from our online correspondence, that my husband and my friend’s girlfriend knew all about the meeting and all four of us were planning a get-together that evening - no, this was someone “from online,” so he had to be an insane axe murderer.

I’ve invited acquaintances from online to spend the night at my house before, sight unseen, and I’ve accepted an invitation to stay with online acquaintances before. Although I probably wouldn’t want to meet at someone’s hotel room for the first time, I think if you pay attention to your instincts and you’re prepared to back out at the first feeling that something’s not right, you should be okay.