Overland Park, Kan. -- Online dating no longer has the stigma it once did. Lots of people of all ages are doing it and many even fall in love and end up walking down the aisle. But much like anything online, it doesn't seem very personal to some people. For those people, there's Jill Ellington.
"I'm an old fashioned matchmaker," says Ellington.
She's been in the business now for 21 years, when she first started her business called "Friendship Exchange." She says hundreds of happy marriages have come from that social club and from her one on one dating business called "Relationship Headhunters."
Ellington says people sometimes try online dating before they come to her, but their biggest complaint is the time they spend sorting through profiles
. "It can take a lot of time, almost like another job," she says. "And that's when people come to me and say help!"
When Ellington first started in 1991, video dating was the in thing, but much like internet dating it was still left up to the individuals who they wanted to date. Ellington says she's learned many people just aren't good at picking out a good partner for themselves.
Ellington says through her process, she asks a lot of questions and really gets to know her clients and what's important to them.
"I become like a friend and they trust me," she says. " I wouldn't send them to someone unless I thought it was a good match for them."
New client Cindy Hough says she has never tried internet dating.
"This would be more personal," Hough says. "I don't trust being online at all because as you know anybody could pretend to be anybody or anything."
Ellington says the process is all about working with the client to find a good match.
"I don't just say 'hey you're meeting this person,' Ellington says. "They get to review the profile and see a picture and then they make the decision."
Ellington says. But she says the most important thing to keep in mind, is to look for friendship first. She says too many people rush into a relationship without really getting to know the other person.
Ellington arranges one on one dates or for people who prefer small dinner parties with groups of singles, you can join her Friendship Exchange. The initial fee to join is on sale for half price until the end of February ($150) and then it costs 80 dollars for every match/date she helps arrange.
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