Dating and meeting online may have become clichéd but, every love story has its own special facet. An unconscious smile creeps up, whenever we read about them.
In our series of stories on couples who met online and fell in love, we decided to get candid with Shayon and Sakshi, who sketched their own fairy tale after meeting online!
But first, let’s meet and get to know more about the couple:
Shayon: I am a Product Manager by profession, working at a 3 year old startup called CouponDunia. Other than being a workaholic, I also love to watch movies, critique technologies and brainwash people against piracy.
Sakshi: A lawyer by profession, and a Delhite at heart. A total Punjabi who loves to talk and dance. My biggest obsession are weddings, dancing at the weddings and, of course, irritating my darling husband. ;)
How did you both meet? How did you ﬁrst interact?
It was a long time ago, when there was no Facebook, Google+, Twitter; not even Orkut. MySpace was still ruling the roost, but was slowly being sidelined by a new ﬂedgling called Hi5.
Well, let me start from the beginning. I used to be in Pune back then, staying with my parents, and Sakshi was in Delhi, pursuing her Engineering degree. Around that time, I had just read the book The Da Vinci Code, and I was very impressed with it. It forced me to think. It even got me interested enough to read the abridged version of the Bible just to understand the dynamics. And yet, it wasn’t enough. I needed to discuss the book with somebody, and the best avenue I could ﬁnd was the internet.
I had discovered that Hi5 had a lot of discussion forums, and one of them turned out to be about the book. I just jumped in. While discussing the various aspects of the book, I ended up becoming a part of a closed group of 4 who would always reply among themselves. Two of them were foreigners, and the other two were us. Owing to the diﬀerence in time zones, Sakshi and I would end up talking more than the rest. And this started the story when I added her as a friend on my list.
Conversations from the social network shifted to MSN Messenger (the IM of choice, in those days), and then to SMS. We still wouldn’t call much since phone calls were still very costly and we were in college.
After roughly 3 months of SMS conversations I started feeling something special for her. I thought about it a lot, and then ﬁnally on the night of February 14th, 2005, asked her to be my girlfriend. Needless to say, she agreed.
And I ended up meeting her for the ﬁrst time, in the New Delhi railway station, after eight months. That was in the October of 2005.
When did you realise that ‘It’s Love’?
There was no exact moment when we were convinced of our feelings. It had rather been a sum up of many small ones. Before I met her for the ﬁrst time in Delhi, I wasn’t even sure if it was a girl! Then we met. Held hands for the ﬁrst time. Kissed for the ﬁrst time. And everything felt just right.
It was in 2009 when I shifted to Delhi with a new job. Of course, the main reason was Sakshi. It was during that one year of proximity which strengthened our beliefs that yes, we did choose the right halves for ourselves.
How many years of togetherness do you share?
It is going to be 9 years this February. :)
Did you feel weird when you met the ﬁrst time, going ahead and meeting a stranger?
Shayon: I think mostly it was the apprehension of ﬁnding that chemistry with the person whom you had been dating virtually for a good 8 months. And well, I was also worried if it was gonna be a girl, or a guy I’d end up meeting! :-P
Sakshi: We met at a railway station because I was scared to meet him somewhere else. We shook hands, and re-introduced ourselves, and Shayon was a total gentleman. He never made the ﬁrst move. He made me feel super comfortable. :)
How did your families react to the fact that both of you had met on Social Media?
Well, we didn’t really go out and tell our parents that we met on Social Media. We told them that we had met physically at a college event. And that status continued until it was conﬁrmed that we would get married. But yeah, most relatives from our generation knew the truth, and were amazed by it.
How and when did you announce about your relationship on Social Media. What was the reaction of friends/followers when they got to know that you had met on Social Media?
Both of us were always pretty open about our relationship. We were already in a relationship for more than a year, even before Orkut was launched. So yeah, right since Day 1 of us joining Orkut or Facebook, we had always mentioned that we were in a relationship. Don’t remember much of what had happened during the Hi5 days, though.
What do you think about the relationship status on Facebook, do you think it’s become a fad to announce publicly that one is dating and then seek support when one breaks up?
Sakshi: I think that it is a personal choice for everyone. I, for one, feel really embarrassed to broach someone when they change their relationship status from being in a relationship to being single. I know that we share whatever happens in our lives on FB and all over social media, but then I also know of many people who keep to themselves. So honestly, it is each to his/her own.
Some Do’s and Don’ts for Social Media Couples from your experience.
Give some privacy to the relationship. It is one thing to announce your relationship on a social network and another thing to romance and ﬁght publicly. Unfortunately, no relationship is ever permanent, so keep your relationship real in the real world, even if you have met in the virtual world.
Their love might have begun on a virtual platform but there is no ersatz feelings out here. The way they complete each other is completely enchanting!