Confession: I was on Tinder last night. I had it on my phone for approximately 12 hours (most of which I spent sleeping) before I deleted it for good this morning, without even really talking to anyone.
Why was I even on it?
I’ve been having trouble sleeping the past few days. I just have a lot going through my mind- a combination of renewed goals, renewed energy and consequent excitement. Whenever it’s late and I’m restless, I find myself messaging my friend in Hong Kong (because it’s day time at that point). We met on Tinder out of all places, (ironically), years ago when I was living in New York. He was the first person I ever met on the app and we actually became really good friends though we never ever dated (an unusual but unforgettable instance).
Talking to him last night, I found myself wondering how the online dating scene is lately and how much it’s changed. I’ve heard such ridiculous things but the last time I used it, Tinder was never a danger to me and I thought it would be amusing to just check out the scene.
So I did.
And I can tell you without a doubt that you will never see me on a dating app again.
1) I still believe in serendipitous, random in-person encounters that happen when you least expect it. Call me old fashioned, but I personally have had enough “too good to be true” first encounters for me not to settle for an app that takes away the fun out of meeting a person, in-person. After having “wow” meetings, it’s hard to go to an app and get the same effect. The most impactful relationships and lasting impressions I have in my memory have only resulted from in-person experiences. Those I’ve connected with via apps have been nothing but forgettable (sorry). Though the probability of an interesting/romantic encounter seems more and more of an impossibility with how tech-heavy our lives are these days, I genuinely believe that the possibility still exists and I am positive it will happen again and again for me, and those who believe in it, now and in the future.
2) Dating apps might be “efficient” by letting you pick and choose at your leisure and for your convenience, but I think it just goes against the laws of love and attraction. Firstly, looking for something will make it that much more difficult for you to find it (you usually come across the best things when you least expect it). From my experience, you find the right people and the people you want to invest the long term with, when you are living your life, are being yourself and you happen to meet them pursuing your goals and passions. Instead of trying to match what you see on the screen and what sounds good on paper with what you think you need in your life, I find it better/more natural to find out for yourself instead of making assumptions. Remember when you didn’t look up people before meeting them and all you had was your gut feeling to judgment to rely on?
3) I hate that on dating apps, Tinder especially, you are forced to judge based solely on looks/what the person portrays. I don’t know about you but I value personality and presence far more than physical appearance. Sure, there needs to be attraction but looking at a photo is not a replacement for sharing the same room as someone, feeling the chemistry, having a physical attraction and hearing their voice. Being on these types of apps forces you to analyze photos and make judgments based on your perception of a photo, not giving someone a fair chance based on their approach, the conversation, or their vibes.
4) There are better uses of my time. If this is true, I should be using a dating app because it’s efficient right? Wrong. I should be spending my time working on myself and on the things I care most about because the significant other I want to meet is doing the same. He’s not swiping while he’s on the toilet nor is going on dates where he knows he might be catfished or disappointed by. He’s working on becoming his best self and being social at events/out and about. It’s just a matter of time until I meet him by being my best and as socially active.
5) I worked very hard to become the kind of woman that I am today, and the truth is a lot of my best attributes don’t translate well on paper. I am NOT my fashion school degree. I am NOT defined by my age. You CAN’T sum me up in just a few lines. I am 1000% better in person.
Though I do admit being on a dating app exposes you to a range of people that you otherwise might not meet and there is nothing wrong with meeting your significant other through an app, these are the reasons why you won’t see me, AndreaM, on a dating app again. It’s just not for me.
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