Are you from the 80’s generation or old enough to remember the song made famous by the late, great Robert Palmer “Addicted to Love”? Whether you are or not, perhaps you have gotten in tune with the millennium and have become addicted to dating. What once started out as love has quickly turned to lust!

I recently wrote my new book Fast Food Dating Your 2 Cents due out on shelves next week. I was part of a production team who started shooting a documentary movie of the same name. We went out on the streets, beaches, clubs, coffee houses and asked both men and women about their dating habits. We really wanted to know what kinds of venues or services they were using to meet their soul mates, dates and one night stands. The responses were enlightening, amusing and entertaining. I had spoken with over one thousand people and had more than enough material to create this insightful yet whimsical book. Even though the book has just been tested marketed, it has already stirred a lot of snickers, chuckles and raised eyebrows. This from both men and women!

I wanted to know why so many people are using modern fad dating services such as Internet dating, telephone dating and Speed Dating. Do they really work? Are people finding who and what they are really looking for? After further review the verdict was an enigma caught somewhere between yah and nay. If dating is the game, then “hell yes it’s a great way to meet,” to quote many respondents on their experiences with dating. In fact, the “dating” and “meeting” component actually became more tantalizing for some instead of the actual person. Does that make sense?

You see, some men do so much Internet and telephone dating that is has become a staple activity in their daily lives. For some, the day begins on the Internet and ends with the Internet. Oh yes, everything in between is also “the Internet”. It’s not the dating aspect for many that turns them on most, rather it is the anticipation of meeting or chatting with someone which becomes most arousing. I had so many report that they are addicted or at best habituated to the dating process because they enjoy the arousal it creates for them. Can you believe that? Some men enjoy chatting with women more than dating them. As a matter of fact, I even had a couple of men tell me the chatting and surfing aspect of Internet dating is more sexually gratifying than actual physical sex. By the way, I did not ask these same men if they were gratifying themselves while chatting on the Internet or telephone. If they were, perhaps that could explain some of their answers!

What is it about Internet, telephone or even Speed Dating that makes it so addictive for some men? From my interviews, I was able to put my finger on two things, figuratively that is. First, some men do get physically and sexually aroused when talking with women. The anticipation and also seeing the woman’s face or body on the Net provides them with a visual for arousal. Second, some men get totally turned on with their own sense of feeling popular, wanted or sought after. Say what?

The obvious reason many men get addicted to dating is the plethora of women they get to meet. Women come in all colors, shapes and sizes and men get to pick and choose exactly what they are looking for in a partner. We live in a day of instant gratification and “fast food” to quote my book, where so many want what they want, when they want it and right now! For some men, this is like window shopping or catalogue shopping. Who said men don’t like to shop as well? When approaching dating with this mind set, you tend to always look for something better or you “test drive” who you will potentially be dating. By the way, the concept of “test driving” your date was offered to me from men I interviewed. I can’t take credit for it. The problem with using this type of approach for dating is you don’t really get to know someone. You date at a more superficial level. In fact, it almost becomes like being a kid in a candy store. The Internet is in your own home and you get to pick and date someone without even having to leave the house and work it. Best of all, they are right at your finger tips. Less work and easy access means more potential. Translated, you have a wealth of selection and most men like to work the dating process through much like conducting a hiring process.

The second less obvious reason is some men get the attention on-line that they crave in the real world. They might lack self-esteem or the social skills needed to meet women. Some might not be or feel as attractive as other men. They view the real world as too competitive and they lack the tools to compete. On-line however, they can be who and what they want to be using a photo and fictitious profiles which might be just a tad exaggerated. Okay, a heck of a lot exaggerated. Either way, they get so much attention from women they get addicted to it. If this doesn’t stimulate and flourish the male ego then I don’t know what will! Instant Internet access means instant attention for many. Hey, attention can be highly addictive.

I am not here to say being addicted to dating is good or bad. The bottom line is as long you are happy and not hurting anyone, then who am I to say its wrong, right? Everyone has there reasons for doing what they do. Who am I to judge? To close out, here is some fast food for thought to all of you Internet, telephone and Speed Daters. Do you think its at all possible women might be doing the same thing to you? After all, they often get the stereotypical label of being shopoholics!

I will be doing a series of articles on the various dating services and success rate in 2005 to the current. We interviewed over a thousand “daters” to find out what works and what doesn’t. We also wanted to know if there are any intriguing new services for meeting. Fast Food Dating Your 2 Cents is a wonderful compilation of insights, experiences and hang ups surrounding dating. Our disclaimer for this book is you will not only learn about the services, but from those who have already read or reviewed our book, which included a production company, all claimed to have busted a gut laughing. Okay it’s not Borat, but we would like to think of it more as a Borat meets Wedding Crashers meets You’ve Got Mail self-help humour book.