Being single on New Year’s Eve has a way of shaping a person’s resolutions. Surrounded by couples when midnight strikes, you embrace your glass of champagne and think, “This year, I’ll find love. Or get laid.” Ideally, both. If you’re tired of waiting for fate to sweep a new partner into your life, you might be tempted to turn to one of the countless dating apps that have been developed over the past few years. Trust me, I’ve been there. Two years ago, in a post-New Year’s Eve hangover haze, curiosity introduced me to Tinder.
We’ve been on and off since we met. We’ve had some good times, some fun, some more serious. Tinder is convenient and familiar. But I can’t get over the nagging feeling that I could do better. Could this lead to something real? It all feels like a game. So every couple of months, I get fed up and I kick Tinder to the curb. I go swipeless for a while, enjoying my freedom. I don’t have to go through what feels like hundreds of profiles to find someone attractive and articulate. I don’t have to deal with messages like, “Hey babe, sit on my face?” But after some time passes, I start getting bored. I remember the good things, like that Tinder date that led to mind-blowing sex, or the match that turned into a really good friend. Tinder’s not so bad, right? At the very least, it’s better than nothing? So I get back together with Tinder, and the cycle begins again.
Thanks mostly to Tinder, dating apps no longer have the stigma that used to come with Match.com or eHarmony subscriptions – if you need a service to help you get a date, you’re probably lonely, pathetic, and over 30. Tinder made looking for a connection a sexy game that everyone should get in on. The attributes that have made Tinder so popular as a dating app, particularly with young people – minimal required effort, emphasis on physical appearance, immediate gratification – also make the app kinda shallow. And yet, Tinder remains the most popular app used by young people to get a date or get laid. But it definitely isn’t the only one out there
So here’s my New Year’s resolution, which I hope will help you achieve yours, if dating-related. I’ve decided to dedicate my next few blog posts to an exploration of popular dating apps. I’ll create my own profile on an app and explore what it has to offer for a week. Then I’ll write a post that breaks down the app’s pros and cons, and whether or not I’d recommend it to friends. I’ll tackle the obvious choice first – stay tuned for a breakdown of my adventures with Tinder, next week.