It was about a month ago that I decided it was finally time to kick the bucket and log off. There was such a surge of power—and frankly, relief—when I deleted all of my dating apps. Tinder was the first to go, followed by Hinge and then Bumble.
When I read Vanity Fair’s article, ‘Tinder and the Dawn of the ‘Dating Apocalypse’—I found myself nodding along mindlessly, silently saying ‘Yep, yep, yep.’ I didn’t really need the article to tell me that dating apps had changed relationships, marriages and the process of finding someone that you want to see for longer than it takes to swipe left or right. That, I knew, from four hard years of being single and watching the whole process change and in many ways, worsen. Even my mom taking over my Tinder account for a week confirmed this.
But as the article points out several times, as we all continue to get online to find someone we connect with offline, I had to beg the question to myself: “Why was I investing all this time into something that makes me miserable?”
Like any true addict, it took me a week to wean myself off of my dating IV and to get rid of the shakes that made me anxious: “If I’m not on these apps, how will I meet people?! What will I do?”
The answer, in short, is that I’m not really doing much of anything to meet anyone, and I’m not really going on that many dates, but I’m also much (much!) happier than I was watching notifications of a new match or message pop-up on my homescreen. In more ways than one, being an active participant in the app world did so many damaging things for my self-confidence, my views on love and even how I acted on those dates. Since taking a step back and removing myself from the ferris wheel of swiping for shits and giggles, here’s what I’ve learned:
I Don’t Need The Validation Anymore
In the Vanity Fair article, the author discussed just how easily it is to feel good about yourself. And it’s true—you see an attractive dude that you’d love to meet in real life and chat with, and suddenly, he matches with you—and bam! You think maybe (just maybe!) this will be something more than a split-second attraction. Ten minutes later when he tells you have ‘Nice tits’—and the mystery is gone.
This post was originally published on Bustle. To read the rest, click here.