More Than Just a Match

Mark and Carissa shared their engagement story with us below. You can too, here

We were both married in their early 20's and stayed in bad relationships we fought to keep together for over 10 years due to our fierce loyalty.

I (Mark) had two kids (girl 5, boy 13), while Carissa had none because she was busy growing her career.

We both got on to date efficiently as we both are management-level professionals.  I was on for about a year.  She was on for 8 days when she got a wink and a quirky comment from me related to something she put in her profile.

We started texting immediately and set a date for Sunday.  Friday night, we both had plans change and were free, so we agreed to casually meet for a drink halfway between Dayton (where she lived) and Cincinnati.  I was there first waiting for her at 8pm.  When we saw each other for the first time it was more "relief at first sight" that we both looked like our pics despite being uber-casual compared to their regular dating attire.  The conversation was so fluid and easy it was like we knew each other for years.  Less than two hours into the conversation, I did something I never had done before.  As if compelled by a supernatural force, I kissed her while she was in mid sentence and she received it as if she'd been waiting for it all night. We closed down the bar, and in a desperate attempt to prolong the best date of our lives, went back to my place just so we could continue the conversation (yes, just talk) despite the fact he had to get up at 5am to run in a Tough Mudder.

Our first "real" date was the following Wednesday when I told her to take off work and get a big hat and dress. She did as requested without question. We spent the day at Keeneland betting on horses, and the night in Lexington.  

The romance was now in overdrive.  I had never let anyone meet my kids before; she met them within 2 weeks. When I had the kids, we played like kids (D&B, KI, etc.).  When I didn't have the kids, we played like adults (concerts, trips, fine dining and nightlife, etc.). I introduced her to my church. Until the kids were comfortable with her, she would drive over an hour from Dayton just to sit with me at church for an hour while my kids were in Kids Club.

We spent New Years in Florida so I could meet her parents. At the beginning of that trip, and 73 days into their relationship, we said those three magic words to each other for the first time, at the same time. By the end of the trip, I hinted to her father that someday I was going to marry her.

Most nights, when I had the kids, she would stay with me in Cincinnati and commute to Dayton. If I didn't have the kids, I would run his business from her house in Dayton. This was our schedule for almost a year, as we did everything to not be apart.

364 days after their first meeting, I organized an embarrasing proposal with select friends and family at the same place and same table where we first met. With me on one bent knee, my kids holding a banner behind me saying "Will you marry ME/US", and all eyes in the restaurant on her, she said "yes" as tears of joy poured from her eyes.  

She moved in with me (fully) the next month.  The wedding is set for October 2015.  A child is hopefully in the cards around 2017.  The rest of this story will inevitably be an epic journey down a road less traveled. gave us a platform to find not just a "match" but something we didn't think was possible.... our best friend and soulmate.  We both thought we'd have to find someone to "settle" for, only to have found our perfect partner for life.  Neither of us can imagine our lives without the other and we cherish every day we're blessed to have together.  We're so lucky to live in a time where this type of tool exists.  Thank you!