I took to Tinder and this is my tale
Let’s face it: I haven’t had the best luck with love. Yes, I’ve dated and I’ve met boys’ parents with a smile on my face and the sarcasm stripped away from my voice. But if we’re talking real relationships and me free falling, head-over-heels with butterflies in my stomach—well, let’s just say Lady Luck hasn’t been a friend. So I decided to try dating apps like millions of other people. Tinder was my poison of choice and this is my tale.
Just like every digital love story, mine started with the first step: Downloading the dating app and setting up my profile. I put very little details (Words. Books. Netflix. Murder mysteries), one photo and went on my way. I swiped right when I liked what I was looking at and left when I didn’t. The first 24 hours were—to put it bluntly—not promising. I got this little notification the morning after I started:
But hey, I was determined. I spent my breaks looking through the images on Tinder, my friend and I even recommending boys that we knew the other would like. There were moments when it seemed hopeless (like when Tinder said I had run out of people in my area), but I got my matches eventually.
I honestly didn’t speak to a lot of boys and didn’t continue the conversation with several, some because they were obviously there to hook up and other times because I just wasn’t interested enough to keep going (or they weren’t).
Someone I talked to offered some #TinderTips when I told him it was my first time on the dating app:
- Add more photos (because anyone can have one good picture)
- When unsure, swipe right (because the chat might be worth it
- Video chat before a meet up (so you know they’re for real) and
- When in doubt, go for a coffee date (you won’t be there long; no one orders two rounds of coffee consecutively)
Interesting stuff, I thought, but why is he telling me this?
So he definitely had some experience and the conversation flowed smoothly maybe because of that. He would ask a question and I’d fire back with one of my own. We found out the basics, shared some stories (PG, people; don’t think dirty) and opened up to each other in a way only strangers can. And honestly, I felt like there could be chemistry there.
But then one night, I was out with my friends and he proposed that we meet up. He was home, had finished his plans, dressed up and offered to get to me. I said no, partly because I was having a good time as things were and partly because I still had my senses intact (aka the possibility of kidnapping/murder/rape kept me away). Besides, I had one real question:
Who the hell offers to meet up at 12 midnight?
It seemed good at the start, but the small spark died out almost as quickly as it began. The end of our talks didn’t have me grabbing a drink and drowning my sorrows—far from it—but it did suck that the one person from this trial I could talk to ended up as nothing more than a Tinder story to tell.
Now, I barely reach out for the dating app and I’m ready to delete it. I still get notifications from Tinder (like an annoying friend that’s sick of you being single), but I just don’t have the care and energy for it anymore.
Ladies and gents, let me say it now: Dating apps are exhausting AF. They speed up the traditional dating process and running a marathon is not the same as running a sprint. Instead of scanning faces in a party, you’re swiping left and right. Instead of making small talk, you get messages. Online dating compresses weeks’ and months’ worth of effort into a day or two—and I just don’t have the lung capacity for it.
Dating apps are exhausting AF.
Did I find love? No. Did I give it a fair shot? I think so. Others will say I gave very little effort or that I should have been more aggressive, but they’re not the one meeting up with some stranger. And you can call me old school, but dating apps just aren’t my thing.
Art Alexandra Lara