Have dating apps created a hook-up culture? Wellness expert and lifestyle coach ANDI LEW looks at the behaviours in apps for matching with potential love interests…
When did “get in, get on, get off, get out” behaviour become so common? “Hit it and quit it” is hardly Tinder’s fault, but the dating apps’ mechanisms for matching vary and some create a psychological response for zero care factor, while others create care culture. The answer is in your swipe.
When you swipe you’re saying that “left” is “next!” and “right” is a match — if the other party is also “swiping right.” The mere swift swipe action can conjure up feelings of “I don’t have time.” What don’t we have time for? Pretty much everything, right? These days we have busier schedules and shorter attention spans and our dating needs to be quick, too. It’s the speed dating movement on “speed!”
With haste like this, your rejected candidates are not even considered for more than aesthetics but your matches make you feel like you won the jackpot. Some graphics can even appear that confirm these feelings — like “boom!” pops up on Bumble. Boom in the room? Boom bam, wham? Or is this a feeling of a type of win that you now feel entitlement to? Here lies the problem.
Matching makes you feel entitled to a date or sometimes more and it actually ruins your chances of even connecting properly because all of a sudden you’ve forgotten how to get to know someone, court, flirt respectfully and find yourself cutting to the chase. A 30-something attractive blonde from Melbourne says, “Andi, I have been told a few times, ‘This is Tinder, not eharmony’ when I refused to meet up with guys clearly wanting a quick hook-up — generally after about one or two sentences — said as a greeting! It’s like they think if you’re on there, you’re up for it, with anyone. Of course, it’s not all guys on there, but it’s reasonably common.”
In the light of the #MeToo movement and the age of women empowerment, this type of online communication isn’t going to work anymore, nor will it be tolerated. What worked in 2019 won’t work in 2020. Blonde single girl adds, “I’ve had it to a certain extent on Bumble as well, but not so much, as guys have to wait for girls to message first!” I agree that the swipe factor is making people start to think of matches as items to be discarded, rather than real people with real feelings.”
“Entitled to your match” or just expectations that kill any hot vibe you guys had going on? Mel in her 40s says, “I’ve seen this from both genders. To be fair, I probably consider it ‘over investment’ a lot of the time, rather than entitlement. For me, chatting online is the lowest form of interaction. Just because people chat online doesn’t mean they’re even going to meet. I don’t consider that I owe them anything and any level of over familiarity which includes sex talk, expecting some level of exclusivity or telling me what to wear or say. It’s likely to just make me pull the pin on meeting them. I used to feel bad about it, but now I couldn’t give a f—k”.
It seems women have had enough of this type of DM chat. They’re turning to apps like Hinge which is known as the relationships app and where you get a notification when joining, saying, “Designed to be deleted.” You’re encouraged to put a heart on a photo or make a comment on inspired talking quotes in the bio to get to know someone based on their personality. I’ve always said “how someone thinks makes a person more attractive.”
Keep in mind that if you match, you’ll need to lose the entitlement attitude that is “don’t match if you won’t chat.” You’re still needing to prove yourself worthy of a conversation by how you show up. How you show up is what you’ll attract, so treat your match like a queen so that you can feel like a king. You’re both still auditioning each other and the element of surprise is always the greatest foreplay.
Go into a match chat with no expectations and all the “netiquette” that smacks of respect and it won’t matter which app you’re on — you’re going to feel good about all your interactions. For an opportunity to turn texts into dates, read my latest book (details on this page). ■
As a certified wellness and dating expert, lifestyle coach and bestselling author, Andi Lew appears on several TV shows, both in Australia and in the U.S., helping one and all with her handy relationship and professional advice. Stay connected with Andi via her Instagram @andi.lew
INSTALOVERS – DIGITAL DATING, DM DISASTERS AND LOVE STORIES by Andi Lew is out now, rrp$27.99, in book stores across Australia or 50% off available at andilew.com
For the full article grab the April 2020 issue of MAXIM Australia from newsagents and convenience locations. Subscribe here.