Life Lifestyle & Travel

What Online Dating Has Taught Me

*just one of the few ‘charming’ messages I get online

Happy Tinder-versary to me! It’s been just about a year since one fateful night when my housemates forced me to download the app. I’ve had a mix of good, bad and just plain embarrassing experiences thanks to it and, yes, to be clear, I am still unfortunately single as an outcome. But for all the ridiculousness of it I’ve definitely learnt a lot about myself, what I want/like out of a guy and how to navigate the Millennial online dating minefield.

So as we’re on the run up to Valentine’s Day (shudders) here’s a few amusing, harmless tidbits I thought I’d share both from my own experiences and stories from friends who’ve also waded into online dating.

You may find a few familiar faces:

From old friends (who I always screenshot for blackmail reasons), to classmates from school, college and Uni and old flames/crushes *shudders*, Tinder can be awash with hilarious and bad memories. It’s also amusing to swipe past minor celebs (i.e. indie musicians and YouTubers) and equally good for the ego when you actually match with one of them (Claim to fame. Totally still matched with Noah Robbins on Tinder. Hit me up bro!).

People are super un-original:

You like to travel and meet new people? Wow. You’re with your ‘lads’ in your profile picture? Or on your ‘gap yah’? Or you’re skiing? You said ‘hi’ or ‘hey’. *snooooooze* C’mon! Put a little effort into this.

Men DO NOT know how to take good selfies:

Where are your angles at bro? Why do guys stand two feet away from a camera and use it as their ONLY profile picture? Or why on Earth would you just have a photo of your car on your profile. Are you an inanimate object? Compensating for something?

You shouldn’t feel guilty about talking to more than one guy at a time:

Learnt this one hard way, potentially missed out on meeting some great guys because I was hung up on being a monogamous dater. If that’s your vibe, that’s cool, but I think just talking to more than one person in the early stages is totally fine. I know friends who’ve ended up being good mates with guys from online dating simply because of this. Also – not to knock your self esteem down a notch – do you think you’re the only person they’re talking to right there and then? I know people who’ve matched with the same person and have received exactly the same message within 2 minutes.

Most people on ‘certain apps’ are after one thing:

But let’s be real don’t tell me you aren’t on Tinder for wholly innocent reasons either. As long as you’re all consensual, safe and comfortable then there shouldn’t be any shame in this. Go forth and multiply (if you want)

The weirder, witter and straight to the point the better:

A generic ‘Hi’ or ‘Hey Ria’ ain’t gonna cut it bro, unless you literally look like Chris Hemsworth or Darren Criss. I like a good opener, or something that indicates you’ve read something in my bio. Also a sucker for a good gif usage – in any context tbh. ‘DTF’ ain’t gonna cut it either, sorry lads.

I totally have a type…:

To the point where my housemate has swiped left and right for me, cause apparently my tastes are that frigging obtuse. If you follow who my fave celeb men are you can probably guess what that type is.

Ghosting / Benching / Breadcrumbing* are so very real:

And I haven’t quite worked out which one is worse in my head. Not to mention the fact I’ve totally done all of the above to guys myself (my bad). In some ways tech has made dating even tougher for us. Read receipts, those little ‘writing’ dots on messenger, and just plain social media is in itself the modern day equivalent of waiting by the phone or changing your MSN status to something they like. *I’ve linked all of those words if you have no idea what I’m on about.

At the end of the day it’s just a bit of fun:

As far as matters of the heart are concerned, getting in too deep with Tinder matches is probably not the road to true love. It can be and I’ve seen plenty of friends triumph into relationships off the back of Tinder dates, but for the most part I’m trying to not get too serious about it, after all dating should be silly, a bit ridic and give you plenty of stories to tell over a couple of glasses of wine until you find ‘the one’, right?

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Tell me your online or offline dating woes (or triumphs) in the comments below!

Ria Xx