Are all the good FOF men abroad? Rochelle Peachey, an FOF from the U.K., can’t say for sure–but what she does know is that there is an undeniable appeal to having a partner with an accent. Her transatlantic dating site, iloveyouraccent.com, connects potential mates in the U.S. and U.K. Since launching three years ago on Valentine’s Day, Rochelle’s site has resulted in 14 marriages and three babies. Read on to find out how she got started, why she thinks her site has been so successful, and the success story of one FOF who used the dating site.
Rochelle admits that her own story about how she met her husband, Phil, lacks intrigue. “It’s very boring,” she says. “We were both at a bar in London and we just got to talking. I should make something wonderful and exciting up, but the truth is we just met and took it from there.”
The couple got married on Easter Sunday in 2001 and moved to Florida, where Rochelle’s husband sold property. “It was such a great job,” Rochelle says. “I would work alongside him, wining and dining prospective customers and clients–telling them how wonderful it was to live here, all the best places to shop and eat. We were a great team.”
When the economy started to dip in 2005, Rochelle noticed an alarming trend among her group of friends. “The worse the economy got, the more couples were breaking up,” says Rochelle, “Relationships around us were falling apart–money can do terrible things to marriages and relationships.”
Many of her friends got divorced and some of the ex-pats moved back to England. Rochelle’s girlfriends confided in her. “They’d tell me, ‘I’m so sick of Americans, I want a British man,'” Rochelle says. “Then I’d be back in England and my male friends would say, ‘I can’t stand the women here–find me a gorgeous American!’ It got me thinking that maybe I could do something.”
Rochelle decided she wanted to start a dating website and asked Phil if he thought there was a niche for her idea. He didn’t at first, but when Rochelle couldn’t get the idea out of her mind, Phil set up an appointment between her and a web expert that he had worked with. Rochelle’s website, iloveyouraccent.com was born.
Today, Rochelle’s website creates the opportunity for American men and women to socialize with British men and women “across the pond.” The site has over 20,000 members looking for their dream match abroad. Rochelle attributes the success of the site to people’s desire to make major life changes, especially many that are living through a tumultuous economy. “They’re fed up with what they’re doing, and where they’re living. They think the grass is greener on the other side of the pond,” says Rochelle.
“One of the funniest things is that I’ll hear an American woman say they really want to meet a British guy because all American guys do is drink beer and watch football,” says Rochelle. “Then you’ll have a British woman say, ‘I really want to meet an American guy, because all British guys do is drink beer and watch football.’ So maybe they don’t mind that their man is watching football and drinking beer because he has a great accent. Maybe it’s as simple as that.”
Heather and Paul found each other through iloveyouraccent.com
FOF Heather Whitmore was working at her hair salon in London, when a commercial for iloveyouraccent.com caught her eye. “One of my staff members said, ‘Heather, you need to get on there–you’re always talking about America!”
Heather went home that same night, logged on, and created a profile. “I felt like a little school girl again,” Heather says. “It was really fun.”
Heather made the first move when she saw the profile of her now husband, Paul. “I was a bit cheeky,” she says. “I messaged him, and I was flirting away like I’ve never flirted before! I actually had three or four gentleman that I was very interested in, but he was the one who really shined through.”
Paul and Heather spoke for eight weeks before they met up. “I told him I was flying to Florida, and he said–I’ll meet you there! We met for lunch at a lovely place and I was smitten.”
Three months later, Heather and Paul tied the knot. They’ve been married for six months, and split their time between Paul’s house in Georgia, and Heather’s home in London.
“I always thought dating sites weren’t me,” Heather says. “Now I think it’s a fantastic way to meet someone. If I hadn’t been on there I would have never met Paul. I feel so blessed to have him, and he says the same thing. I tell everyone how we met, even if they don’t ask for it! I don’t feel ashamed at all.”