I Stopped Using Dating Apps For A Year. This Is What I Learned.

I am not ashamed of meeting someone through a dating app.

In fact, I fell head over heels and had an ‘almost relationship’ with the first guy I talked to on Tinder. We had a tumultuous and toxic relationship and I have no regrets. I still find a way to sneak his name into conversations he has no business being in and if I had a chance to do it all over again, I would. So, yeah. I’ve made my point – I’m all for dating apps.

But after being on it for as long as I have, you tend to miss the traditional way of being courted or starting a conversation with someone. There’s nothing charming about ‘Yeah, I swiped right and we hung out’ after several tries.

There are pros and cons, obviously. I mean it’s nice to meet men you would never end up meeting in “real life”. But it’s not really nice to feel like you’re really having a good time with someone only to see a new Tinder notification message pop up on his phone.

F***k it, I thought. I uninstalled the app and made a deal with myself that I will not resort to it no matter how lonely I get.

So, if you’re looking for a Cinderella-esque happy ending where I meet someone across the room and he walks up to me and asks me out and we have an amazing first night together and now I am picking out wedding invitation designs, you are wrong. Here’s the brutal truth:

#1 Guys on dating apps and real life are pretty much the same
If you think good, respectful and worthy men live on a magical island only accessible by a boat that you’d have to sell your leg and arm to get on then you must be outta yo’ mind. Get real, people. We are all swimming in the same pool. That guy you’re eyeing from across the bar probably has Tinder, Bumble, OK Cupid and Christian Mingle on his phone. And based on an experience I can’t seem to erase, a guy you met by chance is capable of doing the same douchey things as the guy you met on a dating app. Nobody is safe.

#2 It’s not the same out there anymore
This goes for girls and guys. Nobody approaches anybody anymore. We all hide behind our screens. We all would rather swipe or double tap on a photo than walk up to a stranger we are attracted to. I get it, real life rejection is tough. But you know what’s also tough? Ghosting. Waiting for a text that’s never going to come. But that’s the easier and less painful option so we do it. It sucks, but it’s true.

#3 You might relapse and that’s ok
Sometimes you prefer to stay in your nasty a** jammies and binge watch Netflix all night until a Meg Ryan movie inspires you to find true love but you can’t be bothered to get out of bed so you pull out your phone and start swiping. The struggle to be dating-app free is real. It’s just so much easier to meet people without having to look like a reasonable human being. I think it’s ok to relapse. Delete and re-download as much as you’d like, I say.

#4 You deal with a lot less bulls**t from men
All those nights you spent waiting for them to text back, arguing with them about things you didn’t know you could argue about, and wondering when you will see them are all going to vanish. You’ll have so much free time from all the dating drama you’ve escaped that you’ll pick up a new hobby you never thought you’d be interested in. Now doesn’t that sound nice?

#5 You might or might not fall in love
I suppose this article would be more inspiring if I had found someone to call my own without technology’s help. I’m sorry to disappoint but I didn’t. I did not get into a relationship. I did not fall in love with someone. I did not meet Prince Charming. But, I did worry less, I travelled more, I met interesting people along the way, I was 101% focused on my work, and I can confidently say I was really happy with myself. That’s what I learned and that was OK.

 

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