15 Things You Should Know About Personal Ads

Common Questions About Dating Personals
What is a personal ad?
A personal ad is similar to a classified ad, but of a personal nature. Generally, personal ads refer to someone looking for sex or a relationship.

They were traditionally found in newspapers, but now there are many online dating personals as well.

Are newspaper personals effective?
This will depend on who is reading the newspaper you are posting it in. Newspapers aren’t very popular these days, so you are likely to reach a smaller audience.

The real advantage to newspaper personals is that most people don’t read the paper anymore, so someone that does has something in common with you.

I wouldn’t recommend a newspaper ad for a hookup, but if you are looking for a relationship, it’s worth giving it a chance along with other options.

Are online personals effective?
Online personals can be effective. They are a good alternative to dating sites, because they allow you to post only the information you want to give.

You don’t have a set template or lots of guidelines when writing a personal ad, which can allow you to be more expressive and stand out.

It can be a bit harder to sort through ads because you don’t have the filters of dating sites, but that isn’t necessarily a bad thing either. The ad that catches your eye may be one you would’ve overlooked on a dating site.

Should you post your own personal ad, or just reply to others ads?
If you are a woman, the easiest way to find a date through a personal ad is to post your own ad.

You’ll receive lots of replies from interested men, which gives you plenty of options.

If you are a man, you probably won’t receive many replies from posting a personal ad.

Still, women do browse through ads and if your ad stands out, it could get you what you are looking for.

It doesn’t hurt to post a personal ad, but the main focus of your time and energy should be in replying to women’s personal ads.

Be sure to be original when responding to ads, because women get lots of responses.

How are personal ads different from dating sites?
Personal ads don’t have any set structure the way dating profiles do. There are usually guidelines about what to put in your ad, but the format and what you choose to reveal are up to you. This gives you more flexibility and anonymity than dating sites.

You can’t filter and search profiles like you can on dating sites, but that isn’t always a bad thing. The ad that catches your eye may be someone you would’ve filtered out of your online dating search.

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Speaking the Language

Why are there so many abbreviations in personal ads?
Personal ads began as part of the classified section of local newspapers.

Newspapers charge by the line of text or by the amount of characters, so abbreviations were used to make the ads as short as possible while still delivering all the needed information.

Decoding the first three letters
The first three letters of a personal ad generally tell you who the person is and what they are looking for.

The first letter usually either indicates the posters relationship status or gender and sexual preference:

Relationship Status: D: Divorced, M: Married, S: Single, W: Widow

Gender Identity/Sexual Preferences: M: Male, F: Female, G: Gay, L: Lesbian, T: Transgender, W: Woman

The second letter usually indicates ethnicity or religion.

Ethinicity: A: Asian, B: Black, H: Hispanic, I: Indian, L: Latino, NA: Native American, W: White

Religion: C: Christian, J: Jewish, M: Muslim, H: Hindu

The last letter indicates what the poster is seeking. This can be either a specific person (gender) or a specific relationship type.

Gender: M: Male, F: Female, G: Gay, L: Lesbian, T: Transgender, W: Woman

Relationship Type: C/CPL: Couple

It can take a little practice to become good at reading these acronyms. Using common sense and reading it in context of the other letters and the ad as a whole are helpful to interpreting them.

Common sexual abbreviations
Personal ads are full of sexual abreviations that you’ll need to be able to decode to be successful using personal ads. Some common sexual acronyms are:

B/D: Bondage and Discipline, BDSM: Bondage/discipline/sadism, masochism, BB: Barebacking, BBC: Big Black Cock, D/D: Drug and Disease, DDF: Drug and Disease Free, SWS: Sex Without Strings, PNP: Party and play, P2P: Pay to Play, NSA: No Strings Attached

Common Nonsexual Abbreviations
In addition to sexual acronyms, there are many that aren’t strictly related to sex.

Some of those are: IRL: In Real Life, ISO: In Search Of, GF: girlfriend, BF: boyfriend, CD: Crossdresser, NS: Nonsmoking, FWB: Friend With Benefits

Reading between the lines
Just like dating profiles, you’ll have to read between the lines in many instances. Some women won’t come out and say they are looking for a hookup.

Instead, they will use phrases like “looking for friends” “adventurous” or “open minded” to indicate that they are interested in hooking up.

However, women are usually more honest about their intentions in personal ads than they are on dating sites.

You’ll also need to read between the lines to determine if the ad is created by a person with an ulterior motive, like the ones mentioned below.

Personal Ads You Should Avoid
Hooker/Call Girl/Escort
Unless you are looking for an escort, you’ll want to avoid their personal ads. Sites like Craigslist were closed down partially because of escort ads.

However, you’ll find escort ads on nearly every personal ad site. Since escorts can’t legally offer sex for a fee, they use slang to indicate what they mean.

They may use terms like massage, erotic companionship, or the abbreviation p2p (pay to play).

Sugar Baby/Gold Digger
Again, if this is your scene,great. Assuming that you don’t want a sugar baby or gold digger, you’ll need to know how to identify their ads.

Most sugar baby ads will mention something about finances or support.

They may say they are looking for someone to share a lavish lifestyle with or mention struggling financially because they are in college.

Dating verification scam
Your talking to a girl and it seems to be going well. She’s super into you and wants to meet. The only thing you have to do is create a profile on a site so she knows you are a real person.

This is a common scam, and unfortunately many men fall for it. The site that you are directed to has tons of charges in its fine print. Men are often scammed out of $100 or more before they realize what is happening.

No location
This is another tactic often used by scammers to show up in as many searches as possible.

If someone doesn’t list their location, then they clearly aren’t interested in meeting in real life. They may list a region or state, but if they don’t list a city, they probably aren’t interested in meeting.

I’m so horny
If it seems too good to be true, it is. Ads with girls who act like they must have you right now aren’t legit.

Girls love sex just like men do, but they aren’t likely to be begging for it in dating personals.

These ads are scams or escorts. They play on men’s desire for quick and easy sex.

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