by: Tom P. Blake September 4, 2015
Other times people consciously unsubscribe because their health fails, or they don't like what I write, or their lives have changed. The latter was the situation with the Champ who unsubscribed on May 30. She had met a guy, and felt she didn't need the newsletter anymore.
I used to send an email to people who unsubscribed to try to learn why they left, thinking perhaps I could improve the newsletter to reel them back in. Usually they didn't respond so I just let it go. I did not email her to ask why she left, wasn't even aware she was gone.
And while I don't like to lose subscribers, I get it that people's situations change and it's inevitable that sometimes people are going to move on.
So, how did I find out about her meeting a guy?
Damndest thing. I was informed on Monday by Pay Pal that I had sold what I thought was a book via my Finding Love After 60 website bookstore. But, the sales receipt was for $16.95, and of the 4 printed and 6 ebooks on that website, none has that price. Plus the sales receipt didn't identify which book had been sold. I needed to know so I could ship it to her. Hence, I contacted Pay Pal and they were as puzzled as I. But the buyer's email address was listed so I contacted her.
She told me she was the one who had unsubscribed on May 30 but now she wanted to re-subscribe and had purchased a subscription to this newsletter on my older website, Finding Love After 50. I was amazed because I have not charged for the newsletter for at least 5-6 years. But, apparently that particular page on that website wasn't updated to reflect the no-charge status and that is where she ordered from.
"Why did you come back?" I asked.
She explained, "I unsubscribed because I thought I had found 'the one.' (Met him on Match.com). We started dating in September, 2014, and became exclusive after two months. We had a year of a wonderful, committed, exclusive relationship." (The kind we all strive for).
The rest of her story: When she and her boyfriend had become exclusive in November, she noticed--a week after she had removed her Match profile--that his profile was there. Because of that, she instigated a serious talk with him.
She said, "After much discussion and his panicked apologies, he asked for another chance and I gave it to him since our relationship was so new. He promised I could always check on him and he would never, ever, ever be on the site again unless we broke up. I trusted him and had not even thought about it again."
Fast forward to August, 2015.
She said, "From my perspective, he was on his second chance and he blew it big time. I just discovered he was still very active on Match. How did I find out? He handed me his pc to check some air fares for our travel, and the Match icon showed up as a recent website visited on the Google homepage. Much to my surprise he was setting up meetings with several women. He said it was his 'backup plan' and just made him feel good to have a great woman and yet lots of other women who still wanted him in case I ever left.
"I think he sabotaged the relationship because he is too smart to have accidentally forgotten Match was right on the front page. I have heard a similar story from several of my friends. I wonder sometimes if this new world of internet dating makes it too hard to resist compulsive, continued interaction and attention-seeking from the opposite sex for some individuals.
"I suspect there are some people who get 'addicted' to the high of new people approaching them. It's so, so, easy to initiate contact. Like overeating or drinking too much, internet dating becomes the drug of choice, seems like unlimited resources available in one click. I know some people are healthier than this. I hope I find mine some day.
She ended her email with: "He has started counseling, maybe he will find out more about himself. But I am done. Not my problem. Now just to mend my broken heart and be grateful I found out now rather than later. But I'm very, very sad. Back to the market and finding my own joy."
This is a tough story because our Champ trusted her new man and had every reason to believe that he was the one. Yes, perhaps she should have watched that early-on red flag when she found out he was still on Match.com when he should have been off. Let's hope her broken heart mends soon. I tried to make her feel a little better by reminding her that the $16.95 is being refunded, since the newsletter is now free. Little consolation, I realize.
A minor take-away from today's story: When you are in a relationship or even a marriage, and you've enjoyed and benefitted from belonging to a group, club, gym, newsletter, or Facebook page, whatever, think twice before opting out because you're now a couple (unless it is an online dating service or a nudist camp), and you feel you don't need to be there anymore. It is important to keep your interests, friends, and learning ongoing, even when you have a new special someone in your life.
Our Champ is back receiving the newsletter, a little worse for wear, but aimed in the right direction.