Advice, Lifestyle, Relationships, Tough Love

It’s time to ditch the dating apps in 2023

It’s a new year, and it’s time to rid ourselves of dating apps.

I know. Dating apps make casual encounters easy, and some people have met the love of their life through a dating app. But for the rest of us who struggle with dating apps, it’s time to delete them.

My biggest issue with these apps is that there’s no way to create a true human connection. You can do everything in your power to humanize yourself with a photo of yourself hiking or with your dog, but you’re just another digital icon on someone’s phone. I am, regrettably, very quick to ghost someone on Tinder because it doesn’t feel like they exist.

Despite being raised in the digital age, I’m bad at digital communication, especially with strangers. Which is fair considering it’s completely unnatural. When you combine the lack of humanity on dating apps with introductions that rely solely on your ability to text, you wind up with a match made in the gutter. 

Haley Alvarez-Lauzo | Senior Graphic Artist

On the surface, dating apps are easier, safer and more convenient. But we’ve allowed this notion to exist as a scapegoat for the reality, which is that dating takes courage. Dating apps give us the security to take that step and go on a first date. But if they don’t work for you, what’s the alternative?

It’s time to trust yourself again. If you have the courage to set up a date through an app, then you have the courage to go up to a stranger in class or a random restaurant and introduce yourself.

Talking with a stranger proves your humanity to a stranger and allows them to exist in your life as more than just a person on your phone. You’re able to screen them better and faster than you would on a dating app. 

Instead of going through the motions of texting and an awkward first date, you can usually figure out within the first conversation if a stranger seems like the person for you. If you’re meeting them in class or on a night out, you’re seeing them in a more natural state. 

Catching someone off guard can be a good thing. They won’t have as much time to prepare themselves for you, and you can get a more organic perception of who they are. 

Asking someone out in real life takes guts and can be nerve-wracking, but practice makes perfect. Start out small with someone you know in class. It doesn’t have to be for a date. Ask a person you want to get to know better for a coffee. As you get more comfortable with yourself, be bolder. Ask out your class crush and see where it takes you. 

I find it easier to approach strangers when they have no clue who I am and have no connection to my life. If you’re out for the night, strike up a conversation with someone. Even if it’s just the person next to you and all you’re talking about is the weather. Get used to the feeling of conversation and who you are to other people when you’re not protected by a phone screen. 

It’s easy to say, harder to do. But it gets easier each time you do it. 

I have no real problem with dating apps and know a number of people who find success on them. For me, they don’t work, and it might be the same for you. Try ditching them and see where it takes you. If you still have no luck, you have my permission to redownload them in 2024.

 

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