Are they for hooking up? Can you really find love? Are they a breeding ground for predators (dark I know but it’s happens)? I think you have to be living under a rock if you haven’t heard of people dating online. Even if you’re not familiar with dating apps or websites first hand….chances are you know someone in real life who has met someone online.
In this post I will discuss online dating based on my experiences on them and give tips to those that want to dip in the modern online dating pond….well ocean I guess would be more fitting. ~
When I first looked into online dating I was coming out of a almost four year long relationship. At that point in my life I had never really dated around because my late high school years and early college years were spent in a relationship. I never really had that “game” some people naturally have with the opposite sex because I never had to flirt with other men (if that makes sense). I originally started looking on Tinder just to kill the time (the profiles on there are funny and the messages wow) and see what was out there. I made a few friends on there but I never met anyone in person, though they would ask. I still was feeling awkward about meeting someone I knew just online. I guess it was that sense of embarrassment. That stigma of finding someone online rather than naturally in my every day life. It felt more like an science experiment than actual “serious” dating.
After about 8 months or so of being on Tinder and just looking casually….I went on my first date. The person I met up with was someone I talked to for a month or so before. We talked literally every day, throughout the day. When we finally agreed to meet in person it was awkward at first. It was the first time him or I had ever met someone online. Though the date started off kinda awkward at first the longer it went the more it felt natural. After that date…rest was history…just kidding! It was until we broke up a year and half later. At this point I had only dated two guys. The ‘type of guy‘ was also the somewhat similar. The relationship also ended badly and I started thinking was I settling for what was the norm for me? Why was I doing this? This prompted me to spend a year or so soul searching and discovering my sense of self love (story for another time).
I eventually felt ready to meet new guys. This time around I wasn’t weirded out or intimidated to meet someone I had talked to online. I wanted to actually ‘see what was out there’. Maybe at times my curiously got the best of me LOl but I didn’t want to look back and say to myself I settled for less than I deserved because of fear. Online gave me that option to explore more than offline. I didn’t have much time meeting people in real life if I’m being honest. I was either at work or at school because I did both full time. The people I saw throughout the day also didn’t peak my interest. The dates I went on some were horrible. Once went on a 2 hour date with a guy who interrogated me like a police officer. *Note: he was really great through text I thought we connected but totally different in person, extra disappointing for me. Another one a guy was super weird. He was obsessed with wanting to put soap up my butt because I was……he put it “dirty from other men”…uhhhh WTF . There were others though that were super nice but just didn’t workout. A guy drove 2 hours just to spend like 30 mins with me. Another one drove back and forth to Greensboro just to spend time with me so I wouldn’t have to drive about 2 hours there then 2 hours back. I felt like that was unnecessary but he insisted. Just like anything it really just depends, you don’t know until you actually go out with them. I definitely learned A LOT about what I wanted and what I didn’t want in a guy during this time period of my life. I don’t regret anything even the bad experiences.
Apps I’ve Used
Tinder- This app is 60/100. This was the first app I ever used for online dating. There are sooooo many people on this app. You will get a little bit of everything with types of people you will see. This website is the one where you will tend to get more straight up ‘hook up’ requests. I saw a lot of swingers (couples), those in open relationships, and people “just here for the weekend or night”. From my experience this app is great if you just wanna meet new people and aren’t really looking for anything. It’s easier to dip your toes without getting too invested (don’t have to really put anything just a bio if you want). This app is definitely more of a quick swiping type of deal. I honestly felt like I was playing a game at times using this app. I have known people who go on many dates on here but I don’t know anyone in real life that has met and stayed with the person they met on there (well I have a cousin who reconnected with her now husband on there-but they met in person prior so not sure if that would count).
Bumble- This app is 50/100 for me. I definitely saw more “good looking” people on this app than Tinder. It seem like a lot of people had professional head shots? LOL From my experience people like to match you and then they might send a message once or twice than stop. I viewed Bumble as more of the ‘business’ app. People are more likely to give you resume-ish type of bios with their job, education and etc. If you been on it you might know what I mean. There are definitely more professional looking people on here. It might be the area that I live in (Charlotte, NC) lots of banking/cooperate jobs but that’s my experience. There are a lot more of them on here than on Tinder. I will say the one thing that left a bad taste in my mouth about Bumble was the fact that I saw a lot of guys secretly in relationships on this app. Well Angel people go on here to cheat what do you expect (I image you would say that LOL)? Unlike Tinder, which tended to be more “honest” about what they wanted, on Bumble, they would try and hide it. You usually can find out on your own though if they are seeing someone through scooping (us girls call it research LOL).
PlentyofFish- This app was a 30/100 for me. It was over stimulation for me and the app it’s self just seemed very pre-myspaceish. If that makes sense? Unlike Tinder or Bumble, where you and the person has to ‘match’ to connect with you…this app lets ANYONE message you. There are ways to lessen the amount of messages though. If you put the minimum number of characters before you can receive a message that usually takes a good bit off because a lot of messages will say ‘hey’ ‘what’s up’ and etc. I still found the amount of messages annoying even after this tweak. I deleted the app but for those of you who want to try this app feel free to try it. I will say though, unlike Tinder and Bumble it does go in further details asking you about yourself. Everyone has actual page profiles with things such as how many kids do you have, do you have a car, do you smoke, etc. the mundane questions people usually ask on the first few dates. I actually have an old room mate who met her current boyfriend on POF. She’s had good experiences on POF according to her.
OkCupid- This app was a 80/100 for me. It was by far my favorite free app to use for online dating. For anyone actually looking for a relationship or deeper connection this would be my recommendation. This app goes into the most details about different topics so you get a better feel of the person you’re talking too. You can click on someone’s bio and see if you would be a good fit from their responses. Things such as “Trump Supporter/Not Trump Supporter” or “Wants Kids/Doesn’t Want Kids” or “Very Religious/Atheist” are some examples. Those can definitely deal breakers for people. Well Angel people lie all the time…how do you know its real? They could be a *grasp* lie online! I know, but hate to break it to you …anyone can lie about themselves…even the guy you meet at the store or church LOL. I rather know what I can know before I waste my time meeting talking to you. Just my opinion but I don’t think most people would volunteer this type of information to lie. On this app I saw more people being genuinely honest (even about stuff that doesn’t make them look so great). This app also has a neat feature called compatibly. It puts a % of how compatible you would be with the other person based on both your answers. People can message you before you match with them like on POF but it’s just on their profile. You can either deny or confirm. You don’t have to go through the whole delete message and block like POF to get someone to leave you alone. If you swipe no then they disappear. That was actually how I got in contact with my boyfriend, he messaged me on the app and I found his answer hilarious so I accepted his match.
Tips For Online Dating
- BE SAFE– Regardless of if you have been talking to someone for a day or few months you should always meet them in a public, lit, well traffic place. I recommend a restaurant or an activity like mini golf. Many people will meet the person at a bar but I wouldn’t recommend this for your first date unless you are sure you aren’t going to be drinking a lot. Drinking a lot = bad choices. Also, let a good friend know where you are going. If you have an iPhone (or another location sharing application) sharing your location is also a good precaution. Another great thing with safety is to trust your gut, if something doesn’t feel right, it probably isn’t right. You might call me dramatic but its better safe than sorry! There have been stories of people being raped, robbed, and/or murdered from people they have met online. If you want more details on how to be smart and safe read this article by Tinder, it’s detailed and gives great advice on the topic.
- 2. RELAX- Don’t expect to meet the love your life. This goes for dating online and off line. It is especially true I feel when you put way too high expectations on the person you’re about to meet. When you do this a lot of times you end up putting the other person on a higher pedestal. What’s the issue with that Angel you say (in my head this is what you would say LOL)? This tends to put an unbalance in your dynamic before you even find out who they really are! The results could be you end up getting hurt when the person isn’t what you thought they were and/or you end up settling for someone who is really shitty because you saw ‘potential’.
- 3. EXPECT THE UNEXPECTED– Yes, people sometimes aren’t exactly how you thought they would look online. This has only happened to me once though (guy used older photos and was at least 50+ lbs heavier) but my guy friends tell me it happens to them a lot. I even had guys on dates thank me for looking exactly like my pictures or better. I assume that girls are better at camera angles then guys that’s why they tend to get more ‘catfish’. From my experience though most guys look better in person than in their pictures. If the guy is at least ‘kinda cute’ on his picture 80% sure he’s gonna be at least cute when you meet him. Most guys just aren’t that great at taking pictures. I’ve never been stood up on an actual date (where I showed up at the spot and he wasn’t there) before but I’ve heard of people being stood up. You should definitely confirm your plans before you head out. If I don’t hear from someone all day about the date, I will not go to the date. From my experience, people online can be flaky-as in make plans with you and then disappear or ‘forgot day of’. Just confirm, confirm, so you have a lower chance of wasting your time.
- 4. BE PATIENT- There are shitty people out there but there are also good people. Don’t let a few bad experiences make you feel like it isn’t worth it to put yourself out there on or offline. Of course being that it’s online there is a higher chance of shitty people (larger number of people=larger amount of crap) but it also gives you a larger pool to find someone really suited for you. Back in the day people were only confined to date those that live by them or that they might have bumped into at Walmart. Modern day technology we are able to meet people from all over the world with a few clicks (I sound so cheesy but whatever).
I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t have met my boyfriend in real life even though we both lived in the same city. We don’t hang around the same spots and he isn’t outgoing. I remember bringing it up to him one day and he stated he probably would have been too shy to speak to me. He told me doesn’t usually approach random girls in public. He said that ‘just wasn’t his style’. That statement really got me thinking. Online dating definitely gives people more options and makes rejection less painful. I feel like that might be a reason also why more people are going online now a days. I definitely noticed the decrease in getting hit on in public and an increase in online interactions of being hit on (my friends have also confirmed this with their own experiences). Think about it would you be more likely to hit up a girl or guy who you know (based off a mutual match) is attracted to you or one who you have no clue?
I do believe that because there is less of a stigma now to meet someone online driving this increase. It’s becoming more of the ‘modern way’ of dating. Even if it wasn’t from an actual dating app-one person might have direct messaged the other on a social media such as Instagram, Facebook, or SnapChat. With that being said I’m thankful I’m done navigating through dating. Writing this definitely reminds me how lucky I am to have my boyfriend. Putting yourself out there to date around is definitely a roller coaster. I applaud who are still on that journey. ~
Memes are life. The End.