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I’ve never been one to use online-dating apps or websites. In the past, I wasn’t a supporter of talking to someone I’d never met in hopes of cultivating some type of feelings for them — in fact, I used to shun my friends who did. It seemed robotic, shallow, and a little scary if I’m being completely honest.
As I’ve gotten older, a large number of my friends have started to gravitate toward the online-dating trend because apparently it takes away the stress of dating — you don’t really feel bad if things go amiss with someone you don’t even know.
I’ve lectured and preached about the dangers of dating apps like these, but I’ve now found myself here, about to embark on a month-long online-dating frenzy. My goal? To find the love of my life, duh — ok let’s be honest, I’m about to go to college, I just want to have some fun and get to know at least ONE worthy guy.
Tricks of the Tinder Trade
1. ALWAYS click on their profile and look at their other pictures. Sadly, more than likely the dreamy hunk you pick out of the sea of guys in a profile picture is probably not the one who made the account.
2. Read every prospective match’s bio. It’s a good indication of 1) how seriously they take the app — I’m a personal fan of the sarcastic, witty guy — and 2) political and religious views, accomplishments they deem impressive, how many push-ups they can do in a minute, etc.
3. If it seems too good to be true, it probably is. He might seem devilishly handsome until he cracks a smile and reveals the crooked mess that are his teeth — not saying anything’s wrong with that, but if your biggest requirement for a partner is perfect chompers then you’re going to run into some trouble.
4. Remember that in the end, the majority of the people on Tinder are just looking for the hookup. I made this mistake one too many times, especially since I wasn’t approaching this from the mindset of actually falling for any of the people I talked to. Just to give you a little taste of what’s to come, here are a few pick-up lines I received:
“Roses are red violets are blue but like the Titanic I’ll go down on you.”
“Dang girl are you my appendix because I don’t understand how you work but this feeling in my stomach makes me want to take you out.”
“Hey my teddy bear just died…so could I sleep with you tonight?”
5. You will be unmatched just as much as you unmatch, and that’s perfectly fine. I came into this with an inflated ego and a rock-solid idea of what I thought this month was going to be like — I was totally wrong. Guys are going to be just as picky as you are and if you don’t try to make conversation or seem interesting, chances are they’ll move on to someone else.
6. Do unto others as you would have done unto you — aka fill out your profile with a sensible bio and accurate pictures. There’s nothing worse than clicking on a single half faced, duck lip selfie that tells you absolutely nothing about what someone actually looks or acts like.
7. Do not send nudes, I repeat do not send nudes (but if that’s your thing, no judgment here.) I’ve learned that it’s a popular thing on this app and have even gotten a message saying “Based on the theory of infinite probability, there exists a world where you send me nudes. Is this that world?” No buddy, it’s not.
8. Believe it or not, guys don’t always flock to you on this app. Don’t think girls are the only ones lying back waiting for the messages to roll in. If you’re genuinely interested in a guy and he doesn’t message you — I’d give it two days — then start with a simple “hey” or “what’s up.” What’s the worst that could happen?
Mistakes Were Made
My first hiccup on this journey was getting a big head by all the compliments. I learned quickly that just because a hottie says “hey beautiful” one message doesn’t mean the next won’t go a little something like “do you send nudes?”.
Second bad decision, giving out my phone number — I wouldn’t recommend this, period. One guy in particular texted me non-stop for a whole week — even after I stopped replying. He sent weird messages late at night and I ended up having to block him because he gave me the heebie-jeebies.
My biggest mistake, however, was agreeing to have coffee with one of the guys. When we met he seemed to be a nice, funny, rugged, young man with a smile that leaves you weak in the knees. We made intelligent conversation over the course of the mini-date and I left feeling accomplished, because I had actually found one great — you heard right, not just good but GREAT — guy. I was in a state of euphoria the whole way home, but of course it was too good to be true.
When I got home and checked my phone there was a message from my Ken doll: “So glad that’s over with. Now when are we going to make this thing physical?” After calmly telling him to go f*** himself, I got perhaps the most endearing message of them all, “I mean, I bought you coffee. You kind of owe me.”
And with that, my heart sank and my innocent image of men was flushed down the toilet.
Hearts Were Broken
And I’m not talking about mine. I never realized just how emotional men can be! I’ve dated my fair share (okay, maybe a little more than my fair share) of guys in recent years, but none like this bunch. I’ve never met any guys as needy and relentless as the ones on Tinder.
I think there are two types of Tinder guys: the heartbreakers and the broken-hearted. The broken-hearted are quite possibly worse than the heartbreakers. The longest conversations I had with a guy on Tinder was talking about how much he hated his ex… which isn’t a great way to cultivate a new relationship on any dating platform.
Conclusions Were Drawn
Four weeks, 107 matches, and countless left swipes later, and I’m actually not sorry I did it. I came to one definite conclusion: dating apps aren’t for everyone. If you’re looking for quick and light-hearted conversation that’ll only last a few days, Tinder is the place for you. If you’re looking to link up for casual flings with beautiful men, Tinder is the place for you. But, if you’re looking for a meaningful relationship filled with philosophical conversation, you’re more than likely not going to find your prince charming.