If you’re like me—and let’s face it, you are—then you are spoiled for choice given the number of dating apps and websites available to you.
For a while, I found myself completely open to the idea of online dating and excited about its potential. Since I don’t work a traditional schedule in a traditional office, it was an original way to meet great people locally. On occasion, maybe I’d even try my hand at a few dates! How exciting!
I was wrong.
One thing I’ve noticed about dating app culture is that everyone seems to swipe more to occupy their hands or feed their cell phone addiction than to pursue a legitimate relationship. Don’t get me wrong, this doesn’t eliminate the ecstatic anxiousness that sweeps over you when you find a match, but it does mean that it will only last a few seconds. Each conversation invariably fizzles out and ends just as soon as it started.
That’s the hard part about dating through text—you can’t pick up on those humanistic subtleties that help you decide where to steer the conversation and make it last longer than three “LOL’s” and a “so what do you do for work?”
I remember watching an episode of “The Bachelor” (don’t judge my guilty pleasure, and if ABC ever decides to cast me as their first “unconventional” bachelor, mind your business) where one of the male models (big surprise from casting there) said he had tens of thousands of matches. I supposed being that popular on Bumble and having a face fit for fashion magazines would make this 20-something-year-old better off. I wanted to be that guy! Yet…there he was on a TV show centered around finding love. Again, I was wrong. It really made me question the effectiveness of the app.
To be fair, I am not a model. My hair follicles have staged a coup and I have a little more love around the waist than I’d like. I’m addressing these things, but I also completely understand the value that I, and many others like me, bring to the table. I’m smart, wickedly good with words, affable, moms love me, employed, cultured, interesting, empathetic, loving, and generous.
Look, I don’t mean to toot my own horn, but listen…no literally, listen. Do you hear that? It’s my horn, b*tch. Toot!
At the end of the day, I realized that none of this is my fault. And none of it was the (now very single) guy’s fault from “The Bachelor” either. As a millennial, there are a few things that seem to plague my community and ergo, complicate our dating lives:
>> We’re financially strapped.
>> We’re riddled with anxiety.
>> We have moved away from tradition (cue Kehlani’s song “Good Thing”).
All of the dysfunctions I’ve written about make dating hard. But here’s the biggest issue I ran into recently: according to Bumble, I wasn’t active enough.
For the first time since using the app, I received a notification that announced my profile would be invisible. Ouch! I guess giving up has consequences. This one, unexpected notification was enough for me to say “I’m out!” It felt like I was being punished…by a bee of all things! If these apps exist to make love easier, why do I get the boot?
Sure, maybe I wasn’t on often enough for Bumble’s liking and maybe I grew jaded. But to just ghost me, Bumble? Oh hell no! This relationship wasn’t really going anywhere anyway. So Bumble, I’m breaking up with you!
That. Felt. Good.
Despite the “convenience” of online dating, I am rooted in the hope that I’ll find someone without the use of a swipe: romantically reaching for the last peach at the grocery store, approached at a bar, through a mutual friend—at a party, fleeing from hotel security after a night of thrill-seeking. Hell, I’ll even settle for the schmuck who got dragged out to a scummy nightclub for a friend’s birthday party on the same night I did.
Until then, my heart and my DMs are open. And Bumble, you’re not welcome.