The night of March 18th, 2017, I was mad at a boy. Because I was mad, I had a little bit more prosecco than normal. The last glass didn’t hit me until I was at the bottom of my stairs, but when it finally did, it hit with a vengeance.
There are two things you should know about Tipsy Kelsey: One, she’s a shameless cookie thief (sorry, Lorenzo). Two, she thinks Tinder at one o’clock in the morning is an excellent idea.
There I was, laying in bed and muttering to myself (and the boy), “I don’t need you, look at all these matches. This guy likes me, and this guy likes me.” This went on for close to half an hour before I finally called it a night. The next morning I had a message from one of those matches, telling me that I had a lovely smile and he hoped I had a good Sunday. A week later we went on a first date, and eight months later he’s one of the best people in my life.
I’ve tried a few different forms of online dating in the last eight years or so, and I understand the skepticism. There are a lot of choices out there, and a lot of disparity between platforms; for example, I had better results after a single free trial weekend with eHarmony than I did with three months of Match.com. I’ve also perused Happn and Coffee Meets Bagel at different times, but there aren’t many members over here in Italy so I doubt my experiences were the norm. Another thing you have to consider is the benefits of platforms that require payment but offer matching services, versus free apps like Tinder and Bumble that leave you to sort through the options yourself.
All of this hoopla is adding an entirely new dimension to your dating life. There have also been countless articles written about how online dating and hookup culture are ganging up to kill romance and dating life in general. And I 100% agree that our current dating culture is far too focused on playing games and pretending not to care about each other, both of which, as a grown-ass woman, I ain’t got time for.
If it weren’t for an extra glass of prosecco and Tinder, I would never have met my current partner. He lives more than an hour and a half outside of the city I live in, and he rarely comes in to visit. Without Tinder, the chances of our spheres overlapping would be miniscule, and I truly believe that my life would be smaller without him in it.
Let’s set up a hypothetical situation. You see a person you find attractive and you approach them. You strike up a conversation, you get to know them a bit, and maybe you set up a date. Maybe you go your separate ways. Or maybe you just slip them your phone number along with a cheesy pick-up line.
Pop quiz: Was I talking about real life, or a dating app?
The way I see it, there’s no real difference between the way we meet people at bars and the way we match with them online. People have been hooking up for pretty much all of human existence; don’t blame online dating because certain individuals use it in certain ways. That’s the fault of hook-up culture, which we buy into when we agree to play “the game.” Tinder is just another tool, like alcohol and singles’ events. In fact, I’d argue that sometimes it’s possible to make more informed decisions with apps like Tinder because of the profile questions. When I was using it, I refused to swipe right on guys with blank profiles specifically because I wasn’t looking for a casual thing.
Online dating used to be for the weird and the wounded, the socially awkward and the metaphorical (or literal) crazy cat ladies. Even today, a lot of people construct elaborate meet-cute stories rather than admit that they swiped right on their current partners. But with the rise of smartphone technology, the stigma is slowly falling away one new match at a time. So if you’re hesitant, think about giving it a (second) chance. You never know what kind of spark you may be about to ignite.
Swipe responsibly, darlings.