Zoosk Blog

  • April 4, 2014

    Bowled Over by Love: Laura and Jonathan’s Story



    Posted by Joan Actually

    Bowler Jonathan Ferrell will be competing for the Laughlin Cup this summer with his lovely wife, Laura, by his side. “She has changed everything for me and it feels great,” said Jonathan.

    Zoosk’s Behavioral Matchmaking technology introduced this couple in the nick of time. “I was just about to give up,” said Jonathan, “it had been three months and nothing was really clicking.” Once he spotted Laura, he waited patiently for days until she replied. Once she responded, Jonathan scheduled his last first date.

    “On our first date, I remember she reached out to hug me. The chemistry was instant. We had a great dinner and the conversation was very easy. 10 days later, I went to my best friend and said ‘That’s the one I’m going to marry. I don’t know when—but that’s the one.’”

    Just a month later, Jonathan and Laura got married in Vegas. “My friends told me I was crazy,” Jonathan said, “but I’m okay with that. She’s amazing.”

    Laura, like her husband, shared the same strong feelings immediately: ”I knew we were going to be together. I was very excited to marry him! He always does things to make me smile even though he’s working so hard.”

    Laura and Jonathan are looking forward to a happy future filled with romance and bowling success. We wish this lovely couple from Glendale, Arizona all the best!


    If you’ve met the love of your life on Zoosk, we want to hear all about it. Simply share your details here, and let your love story inspire others!

  • April 3, 2014

    ADVICE: Can I Date My Friend’s Ex?

    Dear Joan Actually

    I’ve got the biggest thing for my friend’s ex. She’s cute and awesome, and I always thought we would be good together. I really want to give it a shot without causing drama. Is there an easy way to do this, you know, without screwing my friend over?

    -Fort Wayne, IN


    Best Friends Ex Simple Ver 

    For this reason alone, I’m glad my friends only date boneheads. Since your friend has better taste, I’ve compiled 3 tips to help you preserve your friendship and get the girl.

    TIP #1 Be Honest.

    To avoid damaging your friendship, give your friend a heads up. “Mention your desire to date your friend’s ex in a private setting when your friend is in good spirits,” says dating expert, Stephany Alexander. “If you don’t tell your friend, you’re risking your friendship because he might feel like you are going out with his ex behind his back.” Since your friend will inevitably find out, you have nothing to lose–and everything to gain–by addressing your feelings early on.

    Ways to start the conversation:

    • Friends come first approach: “I understand things are over between you and your ex. I would like to ask her out to see where it goes. But first, I want to make sure that’s okay with you.”
    • Nonchalant approach: “I always thought your ex was awesome. Do you care if I give her a call?”
    • Dude, get over it approach: “It’s been a while since you and the ex went out. It’s cool if I call her, right?”

    TIP #2 Consider Timing.

    “Some people get over a relationship quickly; others grieve for a lifetime,” says Psychology Today’s Jeremy Nicholson. ”But if the friend initiated the break-up or if your friend has moved on to a more satisfying relationship, then it’s probably okay to date the ex.” Stephany Alexander determines the right time differently: “You can use the amount of time they went out to determine how long you should wait. If they dated for only a few months, you could consider mentioning your interest in the ex after 3-6 months.” Regardless of when you decide to bring it up, it’s important that you have this talk. 

    If your friend says no or dodges your question, reconsider dating the ex. Pursuing her might not be worthwhile if it costs you a close friend and, potentially, your friend group. “Conflicts between friends can force mutual friends to take sides,” says Dr. Nicholson. “It can fracture several friendships.” What will your social life will look like if it’s too awkward for your friend and his ex to attend the same events?

    TIP #3 Censor Yourself.

    If you have your friend’s blessing, congratulations. Now, make sure your friend doesn’t regret his decision by keeping the details of your new relationship private. “Keep your relationships separate,” says Dr. Nicholson. “The last thing you would want is your new girlfriend talking about her ex, right?” 


    Are you in love with the wrong person? We’ll sort it out together.  E-mail me at JoanActually [at] zoosk [dot] com.
    Fabulous Cartoon: Stephen Wright

  • April 1, 2014

    So embarrassing you’ll wish these were April Fools jokes…

    We asked our Zooskers: What is the most embarrassing thing you’ve heard on a date?


    Here are the top 5 best responses:

    Mal R: ”You remind me so much of my recently deceased mother. She really would have liked you.”

    Lynn B: ”You have a boogie on your top lip.”

    Michael B: ”Teach me how to kiss.”

    Alex S: ”What do you think of my chest?”

    Barbara F: ”Do you serve freeze dried animals?”


    We also asked friends to complete the following sentence: I knew my first date wouldn’t turn into a second

    date when _________.

    Joe D: She once got fleas from a stray cat.

    Ashley C: He told me the number of calories in the dessert I ordered, with raised eyebrows.

    Trish W: He had a mattress in the back of his van!

    Langdon M: She sometimes communicates with fish, which was one of the reasons she’d converted to veganism. She also suggested naked yoga for our second date… maybe I should have overlooked the fish thing.

    Sarah M: He crashed his car into a parked car and then left without leaving a note- hit and run!

    Natasha M: He was married, but they had an open relationship.

    Nick R: She was curious how meaty my kidneys are.

    Anne A: He really, really wanted to see my belly button.

    Martha D: It wasn’t what he said, it was that pinky ring…

    Matt S: She said therapy is a bunch of psycho-babble. (P.S. I’m a therapist)



    READERS: We’re looking for your best, worst and most embarrassing DATE stories. If your story gets picked, we’ll feature it on the Zoosk blog. E-mail your submissions to JoanActually [at] zoosk [dot] com.

  • March 31, 2014

    A Spark of Love

    For Brad and Julie from Santa Barbara, it was instant chemistry.

    After learning Brad’s preferences, Zoosk’s Behavioral Matchmaking™ technology introduced him to Julie. “When I first saw Julie’s photo on Zoosk, I stopped immediately and read her profile,” says Brad. “When I first saw her in person, I felt my life change.”

    Watch Brad and Julie describe how Zoosk brought them together—and why they couldn’t be happier. If you’re looking for that spark of love, join Zoosk today.

  • March 28, 2014

    Amanda’s Story: Ditching the bad boys, finding the BEST guy


    Posted by Joan Actually

    Things were looking bleak for Amanda in Binghamton, NY. “I was sick of wasting my time,” she said. “I went on a few dates, and it didn’t turn into anything. I started giving up hope.” Just when she was ready to give up, something about Ron’s profile captured her heart: “To be honest when I started looking, Ron was far from a guy I would normally go for. I usually go for the “bad boy” look, but Ron was far from that. Something told me to give it a try. And, boy, am I glad I did!”

    Three years after the first message, Amanda and Ron are married.

    “Ron is always the first person I know to jump and help someone else, even if he already has a million of his own things going on. He thinks about everyone before himself–especially me. He will do whatever it takes to make me smile. He’s very dedicated to whatever he has going on, that includes our relationship which is why our trust is so strong. The saying ‘you’ll marry someone like your father’ is so true. My dad and Ron are two peas in a pod, which is awesome to me because family is a HUGE part of my life. I’m so lucky.”

    Ron couldn’t be more perfect for Amanda; we’re so happy for your both!

    Have you found true love on Zoosk? We’d love to hear the details! Share your story here.



  • March 27, 2014

    ADVICE: He NEVER tips enough. What’s the deal?

    Dear Joan Actually

    What is the deal with bad tippers? I went out with a guy three different times–once at a lunch spot and two times at fancier dinner places.  He seems like a reasonable guy, but he leaves the worst tips! One time he only left a few dollars on a $100+ bill. It’s embarrassing and the BIGGEST turnoff. How can I bring this up without being insulting or unappreciative? Should I just nix this guy altogether?

    -Houston, TX


    Stingy Date FINAL SMALL 018


    A stingy tipper can kill the mood faster than your grandmother’s colonoscopy story. Whether he’s cheap or clueless–the reason won’t matter. It’s hard to feel chemistry when you’re feeling embarrassed and unimpressed. Your date is also failing to grasp the true economics of this situation: That extra $10 he saved himself on tip money has actually cost him a future with you. Since he has already invested 3 dates worth of time and money, he’s losing all of his principal investment.

    “Some people don’t tip because they feel the server didn’t do enough to earn it or perhaps the service was extraordinarily bad,” says The Bitchy Waiter, a sassy service industry blogger.  Many customers look for one single mistake to justify a lower tip, forgetting that if they make one single mistake at their job, their income doesn’t change. Some people don’t tip because they ‘don’t believe in tipping’.”

    When it comes to the appropriate tip amount, Patrick Maguire, author of the Server not Servant blog, says that “20% is the baseline for good service. Even if service is lacking, it would be tough to tip below 15%. A lot of people don’t realize that a server’s base pay is usually less than $3 an hour–that’s practically netting $0 after taxes. Tipping is a must. It’s part of our social contract in America.”

    Stingy tipping is a no-win situation for everyone. Save yourself the hot shame–and give a nod to your waiter–by bringing it up delicately.

    “It would be the apex of uncouth to be a guest at a meal and then chastise your host on the level of the tip,” says founder of Mannersmith Etiquette Consulting, Ms. Jodi RR Smith. “But if you’re planning on pursuing a relationship with this person, then his generosity levels should be gently discussed.”

    Make your point by setting the example or bringing it up in conversation.

    Teaching by Example

    • Go on your next date with plenty of small bills. When the check comes, say “You are so kind to take me out. Here, let me help with the tip.”
    • Take him on a date. When you handle the bill, say, “The server did a great job, I am going to leave 20%.”

    Discussing Tactfully

    • Emphasize the server’s appreciation: “Did you think the server did a good job? For a few extra bucks, let’s leave 20% and make her day.”
    • Downplay the additional dollar amount: “I used to be a server, so I know just a little bit more will go a long way.”



    At Zoosk, we always tip 20%. Questions? Comments? E-mail me at JoanActually [at] zoosk [dot] com.


    Fabulous Cartoon: Stephen Wright

  • March 25, 2014

    Top 10 Reasons to Date a Doctor


    Just in case the money and smarts aren’t enough

    1. Forget clinginess. Between the long hours and being on call, doctors will let you have all the alone time you want.

    2. Playing doctor has never been better.

    3. Doctors know cool tricks like the Heimlich. Ballpark peanut blocking your airway? No stress. Your date can quickly reintroduce you to the culprit with a more aggressive hug.

    4. They possess superhuman powers. They can go without sleep, food, or going to the bathroom for hours and hours.

    5. Doctors have extensive hands-on experience with the human body. Hmmm.

    6. They are great communicators. Bedside manner is a skill; doctors use it every day.

    7. What’s going on under that white lab coat? Wouldn’t you like to know.

    8. It’s impossible to gross them out. Ate something weird and need extra bathroom time? No problem.

    9. Doctors tell the most disturbing, yet awesome, stories you’ve ever heard.

    10. Your parents will be impressed—no meeting required.


    Suffering from heartache or first date nerves?  Our in-house love guru will nurse you back to health. Send your relationship problems to Joan Actually, and she’ll get you a diagnosis pronto.

    Image Source: 1

  • March 21, 2014

    And They Lived Happily Ever After in Marietta, Georgia


    Posted by Joan Actually

    When the guys at the local bar in Marietta, GA weren’t meeting her standards, Jennifer took a chance on Zoosk. Although she went on a few okay dates, nothing compared to the first time she met Scott.

    “Meeting Scott was a totally different story. After just a week of dating, we were official. The first time I saw him, we just clicked. We had so many things in common–sports, movies, and country music–but there was just something about him. We had so much fun on our first date and then we went out on another date the very next day.”

    Just seven months after becoming official, Jennifer and Scott got married. “I know it’s super fast,” she said, “but when you know, you know.”  Scott has been not only a wonderful partner, but a wonderful father, as well. “He does things that no one else does and it really shows that he always has me on his mind,” Jennifer says, “he’s also a great father to our daughter; he takes family very seriously, and I love him so much for that.”

    If you’re looking for love, Jennifer has some advice for you: “Go with your gut and don’t convince yourself that you have a type. You never know what could happen.”

    Congratulations on your upcoming anniversary! We are so happy for you!


    Have you met the love of your life on Zoosk? Don’t be shy! We’d love to hear from you. Share your details here, and let your love story inspire others!


  • March 20, 2014

    ADVICE: I spied on my boyfriend’s texts and feel really guilty. Should I tell him?

    Dear Joan Actually

    First of all, I’m not a bad person. I went through my boyfriend’s phone because I want to make sure that he’s being honest with me. When I looked through I didn’t find anything. Instead, he had texts to his sister about how great I am. Now, I feel really guilty about invading his privacy. Should I tell him what I did?

    -Albany, NY

    Guilty Phone Spy


    The temptation to snoop is harder to resist than movie theater popcorn. When temptation strikes and that high road seems a little too high, get ready to find yourself in a bad place. No judgment. Really. I went off the deep end with phone snooping strategies that could put the NSA to shame. Thankfully, I got over my detective phase, but not before making a total ass of myself. To make sure you don’t make the same mistakes, I called in the experts.

    “Snooping is pretty common, actually,” says Virginia Commonwealth University Adjunct Instructor Gail D. Moskowitz, MSW, LCSW. “It might take the form of looking at confidential information, rolling by a partner’s residence, or eavesdropping.” If you end up rummaging through your partner’s stuff, don’t expect to feel great afterwards. “Most probably feel remorse for snooping but cannot help themselves,” she says. “It can become a compulsion.”

    Dr. Jeremy Nicholson, social and personality psychologist, suggests snooping stems from two causes: “The partner has specifically done something that appears untrustworthy or the individual has a pattern of feeling insecure and not trusting partners.”

    Regardless of the cause, you can help yourself out by talking to your partner about your feelings. Tread lightly; bringing up your insecure feelings without blaming your partner can be tricky. “The best way to bring it up is to focus on the feelings and motivations,” says Dr. Nicholson.


    “I felt a little insecure when you came home late the other night and didn’t call. How can we build more trust in this relationship, so that I don’t worry?”

    “I have a hard time opening up and trusting people. You have not done anything wrong. I would just like you to help me feel more secure. Can we talk about it?”

    Should you fess up about the snooping? Turns out both experts give you a pass, but Ms. Moskowitz adds the following caveat: “It is important to discuss your struggles, fears, and intuitions with whom you want to foster an honest and emotionally intimate connection.” Failing to bring up your uncomfortable feelings won’t make them go away. “These insecurities and secrets can eat into the core of a relationship,” she says.

    These conversations are awkward, but they will help you through the hard part–getting the issue out in the open. The sooner you talk, the sooner you can bury the uncomfortable feelings and start relaxing with your guy and his phone.



    Found yourself in a tricky situation? I’ve got therapists on speed dial. E-mail me at JoanActually [at] zoosk [dot] com.


    Fabulous Cartoon: Stephen Wright

  • March 20, 2014

    Less Sorting, More Dating with Priority Inbox

    Zoosk’s unique Behavioral Matchmaking™ technology is now extending to your inbox. The same technology that figures out your best matches will now highlight your best messages, making it even easier to find the right person for you.

    messges_priority_no_promo (1)

    Less time sifting, more time dating. Priority Inbox highlights messages from your most compatible matches. When a great match sends you a message, this patent-pending feature will move the message to the top of your inbox. Less time in your inbox means more time for your most compatible matches.

    A tailored online dating experience. We keep your online dating experience simple, so you can focus on finding real love. Our technology shows you the best matches, based on your behavior—not a long questionnaire.  By tailoring your online experience to you, we’re making it even easier to find the right person.

    In the next month, more than 25 million singles will be able to use this new feature. We’re confident that you will enjoy our latest matchmaking technology.

    Happy Zoosking!