Should you write an online dating profile that’s funny? It’s probably not a good idea. Your online dating profile is not improv at the comedy club. Your profile is an opportunity to portray yourself in a way that shows potential partners who you are and what your life is about: Your lifestyle, what kinds of things you like to do, what your values are, etc. Getting face time is the ultimate goal of a dating profile. Once you get face time you can be as funny as you want.
This one is, for sure, contrary to popular belief. However, funny can easily be misinterpreted, especially when it’s written. Creating a humorous online dating profile usually tops the list of advice in most articles about the best way the write your dating profile. I disagree. I love to laugh. But for me, I’d rather experience the funny side of a person in person. I don’t want to have to decipher something that supposed to be funny but isn’t because I misunderstand.
In my opinion, I’d rather someone simply mention how clever and witty they are – how their friends think they should have been a standup comedian.
Here are some examples:
“I have a witty, sometimes inappropriate sense of humor and I’ve been known to bust a few guts with my jokes. People tell me I’m funny, but you’ll have to see it for yourself.”
Or you can touch on funny things you did.
“I’m not too humble to brag about my amazing cooking skills, but don’t judge me for the mess I make in the kitchen. I still don’t know how I got spaghetti on the ceiling. Pro tip: just let it dry, it’ll drop down all on its own.”
In the first example, the writer gets straight to the point about one of their personality traits. And, if they have the confidence to say that in their profile then it’s likely they will prove it in person, on dates.
In the second example, the writer demonstrates their “I can laugh at myself” side. It’s a statement that makes the reader smile and gives them the sense that the writer is indeed good humored and doesn’t take him/herself too seriously.
The best demonstration of an example of how funny can be misinterpreted is a story about an email I once received from a man.
I’m online dating and I see that I have a new message. I open it up and the one and only thing he said in the message was, “I don’t know how to put this, but I’m kinda a big deal.”
I was like, what?
I didn’t get it!
Much later on, like months later, I learned that what he said was a line from a Will Ferrell movie. All of a sudden I was like, ohhhhhh. That’s what that guy meant!
To top it off, I don’t really like Will Ferrell. I don’t watch his movies. That’s why I had no clue.
So, this poor guy reached out to me, trying to be cute and funny and it fell splat because I completely misunderstood where he was coming from. He was also trying to connect to me with a mutual admiration for Will Ferrell, which I did not have.
Let’s quickly pretend this guy saved his joke till the first date. Let’s say, he started his initial correspondence by asking me about myself, and yada yada, a few back and forths later, we agree to meet for a cup of coffee. When we get there, we stand in line and he leans over and says, “I don’t know how to put this, but I’m kinda a big deal.”
I would have looked at him with a confused look on my face. Maybe I say, huh? Him realizing my confusion says, you know! Will Ferrell. Like, duh.
No, I actually don’t know, I don’t follow him much. But, I’m sure you did a great interpretation!
We get a little laugh, the ice is broke and we continue on with conversation.
Written vs. Real life.
People often think, men in particular (sorry guys), that having a funny profile will help them stand out. That might be the case, but probably not in the way they think. Having a dating profile full of jokes will most likely backfire, especially if you are looking for a serious relationship.
What stands out to me when I read online dating profiles is seeing genuine thought and care. Showing and saying to someone that you are looking for a real relationship and you care about dating is what I find impressive. I won’t bother communication (much less plan a date) with you if I don’t get a sense our lives will mix well together, and my time it too valuable to guess. If you make a bunch of jokes I’ll just think you are a joke and move on.
Making jokes might be seen as passive aggressive. It could make you seem emotionally unavailable. It takes guts to put yourself out there and admit you want a connection.
Everyone wants humor in a relationship; humor is very important. It helps build connection. It helps you feel comfortable being around another person. But, I want you to make me laugh after you’ve proven to me that you are genuine about dating, settling down and being serious with someone.
I’m not saying be a big fat bore. Choose photos that reflect how much fun spending time with you will be. Show yourself smiling and laughing and having a good time. Your profile and pictures go hand-in-hand, be strategic.
This one is a touchy subject. I get it. I see the choice boiling down to playing it safe rather than sorry. I don’t think you can go wrong by avoiding humor, especially if it’s forced because you’ve been told it’s something necessary for your profiles. Be thoughtful. Always be thoughtful.