Interracial Marriage

Lisa & Joe -
Tampa, Florida, United States

Engaged February 2017

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Their Pet Popped the Question

When Lisa pondered options for usernames, in the midst of posting her profile on our site, she came up with the logical (but fun) “NewScene.” Not so new on the scene was Joe, whose handle was “JMango0523.” He’d been with us a year at that point.

Lisa wasn’t having much luck with traditional methods. “I was a single mom with little time to waste on bad dates,” she explains. “So online dating helped weed out those that didn’t pass the Chat test. Your site was not my first, but it made me the most comfortable to work with. Everyone on the site is like-minded.”

She’s referring, of course, to the fact that we’re an interracial dating site. That’s why Joe signed up, too — along with the convenience factor that comes with Internet personals. “I tried it due to my schedule,” he explains. “I had tried other sites with no success in finding true love.”

Given all this, it shouldn’t surprise you to learn that the duo didn’t expect to find a life-changing love. “I was not confident at all about finding love,” admits Lisa. “Hopeful, a little, but I didn’t really think I would fall in love like this.”

But of course she did — with Joe. He still can’t believe his good fortune. “I was open to it, but I never thought I would find my love over 1200 miles away! I never would have met her if it wasn’t for your site! Thank you!”

While they’re very happy now, it took patience for these two to connect. To be specific, it took Lisa a year on our site and Joe two years before they connected. “I reached out to him,” recollects Lisa. “I sent an instant message to Joe, asking how he liked living in Florida.”

We asked her what grabbed her attention, in his profile. “His broad shoulders and really cute smile,” she says with a shy giggle. Joe got a good vibe from her profile, too. “I liked how she had a good sense of humor, and a beautiful smile.”

Let’s fast-forward to their decision to date in person. “It had been four months of long conversations on the phone,” Lisa recounts. “At that point, I really wanted to meet him!”

As luck would have it, she’d already be in his neck of the woods. “She was coming to Florida and thought it would be a good opportunity [to meet],” says Joe. “We went to Starbucks for a day date.”

Lisa remembers her first thought upon meeting Joe: “Thank heavens I’m not being ‘catfished.’” And he wasn’t displeased with her appearance, that’s for sure. “She was beautiful in person!” exclaims Joe.

Getting to know Joe better that day, Lisa remembers thinking that he was missing out on some important things. “You could tell that all he did was eat, sleep and work. And he was interested in breaking that cycle,” she notes. Joe appreciated Lisa’s witty banter. “She was very funny,” he says.

Surprisingly, after this experience our couple-in-the-making didn’t immediately take another date for granted. Lisa put it at a “20% chance” and says she was “not very sure,” adding that “it took a year” for them to meet in person again. As Joe saw it, “We were long distance, but I had faith.”

Lisa points out that she had to get the measure of the real man — something no profile, no matter how detailed, can tell you. “He is very caring. That just cannot be conveyed in a profile,” Lisa maintains. “When people tell you ‘I’m very caring,’ you take it with a grain of salt.”

Joe nods in agreement. “A profile is a profile. Talking on the phone we got to be very good friends and then, when we got to be around each other in person, that is the true test. We had some bumps in the road but once we really got to know each other, it blossomed into a true, loving relationship! One thing I can say is that sometimes you have to give a relationship time. One other thing I did not get from her profile is how spiritual she is. That sealed the deal.”

We asked Lisa if Joe fit what she considered her “type,” before meeting him. “He looked the part, but ended up being what I needed, not what I wanted,” reveals Lisa. For Joe, Lisa WAS his type — she fit to a “T,” in fact. “She is exactly what I wanted the whole time,” he says. “God sent her to me.”

In some ways it’s surprising that they navigated this long road to living together, with a year between dates one and two. “Considering we were in two states and hearing about other people we had met [with similar stories], it would bother us,” admits Lisa. Joe backs up his lady on that point. “Living in two states was challenging,” he agrees. “But it worked out for the best. She is the love of my life!”

Lisa will never forget the moment she realized this was special. “I was feeling bad, and homesick,” she remembers. “He insisted on seeing me; I rolled my eyes and went to his apartment. He just sat with me in loving silence until I felt better. I was hooked.”

For Joe, it was a simple realization: “I started thinking about her more and more every day!”

Knowing they were ready to commit on a deeper level, Joe and Lisa started getting serious. “Well, we adopted a cat named Sheba,” begins Joe. “I had talked to her [the cat] for weeks about how she was going to have the ring around her neck when she presented it to Lisa. I bought her a pink collar with a bell around it. Mistake! When the time came and Sheba had to wear the collar and the ring around her neck, the bell on the collar freaked her out and she wouldn’t move… so I had to improvise and carry Sheba to Lisa, where she said YES!”

Lisa tells singles not to overthink it. “Don’t try to be strategic,” she suggests. “Just put things out there, how you feel, what you want. Because the one for you will accept it. And try to have a long courtship. It is worth the investment. We had no expectation going into this — maybe just a little fun. Once I realized I had something special, I knew I had to adjust to make it happen.” Joe adds, “Be honest about what your intentions are.”

For Lisa, this love affair stands alone in her life experience. “It’s been a wild ride,” she says. “I’ve never felt like this with anyone.” Joe has no regrets. “True love keeps getting better and better,” he says. “To me, she’s perfect.”

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