I always told myself that if I reached my mid-thirties and I hadn’t found a life-partner, I’d consider hiring a matchmaker to help with the search. Last week I officially crossed the threshold into my later thirties and low and behold, here I am – still single, still looking.
I have a handful of close friends who are in a similar boat. They’re in their thirties and forties, attractive, intelligent, successful in their careers and all around great people. But they still haven’t met the right person – and not for lack of trying.
As friends partner off and get married, finding someone to date within our social circle seems increasingly challenging (I can’t count how many times I’ve been set up with a friend’s “sole single male friend,” only to discover that all we have in common is we’re both unmarried and have Netflix accounts), and there are only so many creepy online dating messages you can receive before burnout and general existential angst begins to set in.
Is it time to bite the bullet and hire a matchmaker? And what would that even look like?
If there’s anyone who would be able to answer my questions it’s Carmelia Ray, celebrity matchmaker, certified dating coach and star of the new Hit TV Series, Mom Vs Matchmaker. With over 25 years experience, Ray has helped 7000 people find love – and she has a lot to say about the process.
If you’re tired of navigating the dating scene on your own, hiring a matchmaker can save you time in the long-run. “Your matchmaker invests a lot of time in getting to know you and understanding your relationship needs and goals. You are introduced to someone who is a great match based on core compatibility; instead of wasting time dating people who you discover are completely different after a few dates, few months and in many cases, a few years,” says Ray.
It’s also a great option for busy professionals who want to avoid the potential time-suck of online dating. “Instead of swiping and getting caught up with online dating frustrations, ghosting, and kitten fishing; matchmaking allows you to be connected with singles who share similar lifestyles, attitude, values and goals,” she says.
But what about the cost? Ray encourages singles to think of it like this: “Time is money. Dating the wrong person can cost a lot in both time wasted and money invested into the wrong relationship. Men especially feel the financial pressures of dating when they’re wining and dining ladies they are looking to impress.”
When you work with a matchmaker, “wasting money going out on dates with singles who you are trying to determine compatibility with, is now eliminated. Your matchmaker introduces you to someone who already shares compatibility and has a much higher likelihood for a long-term relationship to develop,” says Ray.
As someone who’s gone on their fair share of bizarre dates, I like that a matchmaker does the vetting for you. “As a professional matchmaker, I personally meet with each and every client I work with. When working with clients Internationally, we do a thorough video conference, Skype call and incorporate third party screening to ensure the client is really who they say they are.” Therefore reducing the likelihood that you’ll end up on a date with someone who is a foot shorter than what they listed in the profile (true story).
But much like online dating, matchmaking requires that clients be open to the process and have a clear idea of what they want. As Ray shares, “I look for clients who are committed to the process of finding their partner and are willing and open to working with me. When a client is fixed on doing things “their way” or isn’t “coachable” or open to any feedback, this typically never works out well for myself or the client.”
Lastly, when it comes to finding love, patience is required. As Ray reminds us, “an ideal matchmaking client understands that finding someone is a process and not a quick fix.”
It should be noted that in Canada, matchmaking businesses are growing – and thriving. There’s a matchmaker for every type and every age group. Matchmaking services run from the traditional to the totally electronic, but at the core, it’s where people are matched by a third party.
Research shows autumn is a terrific time to start looking for a more committed love relationship before the big winter hibernation.
Historically, many cultures would call upon a trusted matchmaker to find the most suitable spouse for their children. And in some cultures this is still the most preferable way to meet the right person. Matchmaking has a long history, dating back centuries and many trained to be a professional matchmaker after years of studying. Part art, part business deal, matchmaking comes in many forms and many can attest to the success of going this route.
From different names (in the Jewish communities of Russia and Eastern Europe, families would visit a Shadkhan, in Japanese culture this person was known as a Nakodo, while the Chinese referred to the person as Nu Gua.) And while, some see the practice as quaint and old-fashioned, the resurgence can be found in the dozens and dozens of online agencies offering services from the corporate level to those who just wanna do lunch. There are even matchmaking services for the gay community.
Of course you’d be surprised at the success found in perfect matches when family and friends get involved, because no one knows you like a beloved family member or trusted friend!