Lost in Love: the Ups and Downs of Dating Apps
As a semi-permanent single lady, I have used my fair share of dating resources such as smartphone applications. These apps include Tinder, Bumble, Plenty of Fish, and (sadly, one time) Seeking Arrangements. Almost all of these apps are “swipe left, swipe right” apps where you judge people based on their physical appearance and brief bios. Though I use these apps for dating/relationship purposes (unsuccessfully), most people use them for hookups and flings. So I’ve piled together a list of pros and cons and ways to properly navigate through these hard times in technology.
Become a Pro-Dater
Something I’ve noticed with my few years of dating app failures is that I’ve actually become really great at going on dates. I’ve given myself the title, “Queen of First Dates,” because of how good I am at them. I know how to keep a conversation going when it falls, what questions to ask, and how to escape when a date goes south. Sadly, I’ve become so good at first, second and third dates that they’ve become monotonous to me. Each date seems like the last but I guess that’s another perk; I know how to sort through the bad apples.
Discover New Friendships
Something most people hate about dating is being put in the dreaded “friendzone,” but sometimes that’s a good thing because a romantic relationship wouldn’t work out! Some of my good friends have come out of tried relationships that never worked and that’s OK. Just because something romantic never came out of that guy you had a massive crush on doesn’t mean you two can’t have a good time playing video games or going to your favorite brewery. Additionally, Bumble has this really great aspect of their app called Bumble BFF’s that allows you to match up with people who share similar interests without any romantic strings attached.
Everyone knows that I can tell a good story. I’m an animated speaker that is only fueled by my flare for dramatics. So when I have a bad date or receive some crazy messages, I tell all of my friends. These crazy instances range from nasty messages, sexualizing my body to having an entire group of guys block me on all social media facets because I hooked up with a man who’s friend had a crush on me (a friend with whom I had NEVER met). Someday I might document these stories. I truly believe they provide a lot of comedy and humor to my close circle of friends.
The Failed Beginnings
Something I really hate is when you meet a great guy who you have a lot in common with; you share stories, joke around, and have insane chemistry. When the date ends, he kisses you and tells you that he can’t wait to see you again… he asks you to text him when you’re safe at home because he’s “concerned for your safety” and “cares about you.” BUT when it comes down to it, he never arranges a second date because either he’s just too lazy, he was only looking for a hookup (that never happened), or he was just faking the whole four hours you spent together. You kick yourself for falling for him because you convince yourself it’s you and not him. But it’s not you. There’s nothing wrong with you. He’s just scared and intimidated by how AWESOME you are.
The Lack of Human Connection
Dating apps circle around the user-friendly model of “swipe left, swipe right.” This means you essentially are judging the book by its cover. Once you match with someone, a conversation could potentially start, but how do you know if there’s chemistry or a real connection? You can never know until you meet that person. But when you meet that person, there’s the likelihood that they will remain on their phone during the date and the connection won’t EVER have a chance at developing because this is the society we live in. We are humans who worship the God of technology. Dating apps are superficial and unrealistic. In reality, most of the guys I swipe left on through dating apps, I’d swipe right on through real life.
Being Treated like an Object
Sadly, there are times when I have fallen down the Tinder trap. I’ve matched with a cute guy, met up for drinks, and have ended up back at his place. One of the worst things about modern dating is the celebration men receive for their sexual escapades and the slut-shaming women receive. This is something that is being commonly discussed amongst my peers and I, something we’re trying to change, but that never gets rid of the shame, guilt, and sadness that follows me the morning after a one night stand. In my experiences, I’ve been rushed out of houses the next morning, hidden from parents, and asked to “forget it ever happened.” In these common cases, I feel dehumanized, sexualized and used. This is the worst of modern dating and apps like Tinder and Bumble.
While I have never had a successful relationship from Tinder or Bumble, I have friends who are happy in love with their significant others. I’m currently not on any dating apps due to frustration and impatience. SO if you wanna hook a sista up with some lovely, wonderful single men… throw them my way. I’m looking to create honest, meaningful connections and I don’t think I can find that through the means of modern-day technology.