Tinder Is Not a Place to Make a Love Connection…Or Is It?

Everyone knows Tinder is only good for one thing: shirtless selfies.

A friend recently asked me which dating apps I was on. I listed three: Hinge, Bumble, Tinder. That’s down from the eight apps I was on at peak desperation.

She then asked which ones I was serious about. That knocked my preferred apps down to two: Hinge and Bumble.

She was appalled. How could I possibly not consider Tinder a primary app for finding love? She knew “many” people who had found love on one of the oldest dating apps in the App Store. I should reconsider!

My experience with Tinder has not been great.

Almost every match starts with banal chatter and ends with a man I’ve never met telling me about his sexual fetish.

There was one guy who seemed normal enough to go on a date with. However, when I arrived for said date, I discovered he had T-Rex arms (a visual refresher), spoke with a lisp, and used “like” after every, like, other, like, word. He also picked an upscale restaurant for our date and then showed up in a wrinkled t-shirt and jeans. Check, please!

That was my first and last Tinder date…until last weekend.

After my friend gently berated me about giving up on Tinder, I decided to give it a try with true intentionality.

I swiped right on the first guy with a nice smile, shirtless photo, and zero information in his profile other than his name (we’ll call him Gus), age (36) and employer (self-employed).

BOOM! It’s a match! (Tinder lingo, not mine.)

He messaged me first.

“Hi Erin. I’m glad we matched. You are stunning!”

Gus was off to a great start.

After the standard exchange of locations, he announced he was going to bed and that I could text him the next day.

🤔

Um, okay. Text, sir? I don’t even know your occupation. Or your favorite football team. Or what you do for fun?! There is no way I’m going to text you…on your actual cellphone. Who do you think I am?

So I sent him my number instead and told him he could text me. 🤦🏾‍♀️

Well, he did. And we hit it off right away.

I found out that he’s an electrical contractor, never married, with a 9-year-old son. He prefers football over baseball. He practices jiu jitsu and has for ten years. He’s looking for a relationship because hooking up with random women doesn’t set a good example for his son.

Had I struck Tinder Gold (if you are active on Tinder, you see the joke there)?

We made plans to meet for lunch on Saturday at a local spot near the beach.

I arrived first to grab a good spot at the bar and a drink. He arrived right on time looking twice as handsome as he did in his pics. (And, trust me, he looked very good in his photos.)

The conversation was good. His smile was fantastic, but I could not get a read on him. Was I smiling too much? Laughing too hard? Out of his fucking league? In the moment, I decided I could only be me and continued to do so for the next two and a half hours.

When we finally parted for the day, he leaned in for a kiss. It was very reminiscent of being kissed on the playground in third grade by the kid who just threw dirt in your face (but he likes you!), but it was sweet.

I expected never to hear from him again.

But I did! He texted me not long after I drove away from the restaurant.

“I had a wonderful time with you. I hope I wasn’t too awkward. You’re beautiful.”

Apparently, my “Like” meter was way off.

Date #2 is scheduled for this weekend. Maybe Tinder isn’t so bad after all.

(But given the name of this blog, let’s assume it will be all down hill from here.)

Am I Asking For Too Much?

Bumble is trolling me.

I’m just a girl, looking for a boy…and Bumble is trolling me!

I received the message above after swiping (all to the left) through about 20 prospects. Are my filters so limiting that I have filtered myself out of potential matches?

For the uninitiated, Bumble Boost allows you to filter your potential matches by a variety of criteria. Some are dumb (What is their star sign?) and others are more important (Do they have or want children?). In order to apply a filter, you must have answered the question yourself.

One might wonder why apply filters at all. Isn’t the fun of dating learning about the other person as you go? The answer is “yes” if we’re talking about dating in the 1990s before the dawn of the internet and social media. But with everyone posting everything about their lives on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc., why shouldn’t I be able to specify that the next guy I go on a date with isn’t a smoker.

So what are the filters I’ve applied?

Interested in Men.

Age: Between 34 and 45

Distance: Up to 24 miles away (Unless you live in Brooklyn, Queens or Manhattan, because I’m not crossing the Hudson River to get to you.)

Height: Between 5’9″ and 6’2″

Education: Undergraduate degree; In grad school; Graduate degree

Smoke: Never

What do you want from your Bumble date? Relationship; Marriage
*Note: The other options are “something casual” and “don’t know yet.”

Do they have or want children? Don’t want; Have & don’t want more

Maybe it’s that last one that’s limiting my prospects, but meeting a partner who doesn’t want kids — or more kids if he already has them — is very important to me, because I don’t want to have children. Having that understanding upfront helps avoid an uncomfortable conversation when you’re on the road to a serious relationship and your partner is all goo goo gaga over babies and your uterus has a “do not disturb” sign.

Other filters I have not turned on:

Do they exercise?

What is their star sign?

Do they drink?

Do they have pets?

What is their religion?

What are their politics like?

It’s not that I don’t care about those things, but they’re not dealbreakers for me.

In trying to get over Anthony, finding a limited number of potential matches really has me wondering: should I drop my filters and open up my dating pool to the masses?

Let me know what you think in the comments.

When It Comes to Describing One’s Self Online, Should Anyone Really Be Good At It?

Houston, we have a profile problem.

I have a hard time talking about myself in a positive way. This doesn’t mean that I’m not a confident, intelligent woman who knows she has a lot going for her. (Not so humble brag.) But how does one convey all of that in a succinct way in a forum where good looks are a dime a dozen and, according to reports from several men I’ve dated, crazy lurks behind every 😉 emoji.

For me, the struggle begins with the profile pics, because let’s be real: if you’re “dating” in 2019 and it’s not on a dating app, you somehow exist in a parallel universe only a select few have ever seen.

As soon as that “upload photos” screen appears I start to sweat. Are my selected pics too filtered? (They never are.) Do I look like I’m trying too hard to be cute? Fun? Sexy? (Nope. Probably. Absolutely.) Will all of the white men be really confused as to why my hair is different in every photo? (Is the sky blue???)

Ugh.

But, of course, that’s not the end of it. Now you have to write something interesting about yourself.

5’2”
Looking for a good guy, not a good time!

No, that’s not it.

Single and ready to mingle!

Zzzzz

I’m not your average damsel in distress. I enjoy sports! I’m smart AND funny. Swipe right on me!

Next.

In reality, my actual profile description goes a little something like this:

Funny. Direct. Smart.

If all of your pics are selfies and sexy faces, we’re probably not going to get along. Smile!

I spend a lot of time playing 🏐 , 🏌️‍♀️ and 🎾 , but you don’t have to.

No filters on any of my pics (no makeup either).

Bonus points for messaging me first.

Not the best, but certainly not the worst.

See, I’ve swiped past enough profiles to know what guys say they want. My profile delivers on that: witty, ball-busting, naturally attractive. My matches prove my point — although, my overall relationship success rate says I’m doing something horribly wrong.

Anyhoo…

The real problem is that most men have shitty online dating profiles. The photos are horrendous (Enough with the car selfies!); the descriptions have grammatical errors (It’s “too,” not “to.”); and they are generally boring AF or stupid AF — the profiles, not the men.

I know this is a generalization, but take the following profiles as examples.

EXHIBIT A:

Jeff is bilingual, y’all. He speaks the Español and he’s not afraid to “hola” at you.

Here’s a gem: “You don’t have to be classy, just be cool.” What the fuck does that even mean, Jeff?

EXHIBIT B:

“Modern (yet believes in old school chivalry)” So you’ll let me work outside of the home, but won’t let me pay for dinner? On second thought…that’s not so bad.

Also, chill out on the LOLs and JKs, Jeffrey. We get it: you think you’re funny.

EXHIBIT C:

 

Presented without commentary. (Although, you can find commentary in a previous post.)

My advice to men who are in the process of creating or updating their online dating profile: consult your best female friend. Heck, consult the barista at Starbucks. I can pretty much guarantee your matches will go up exponentially. Or at the very least, you won’t be featured on a single woman’s blog about her travails in dating.

Don’t have any female friends? That’s a problem, but not for this blog. Follow these DOs.

DO post solo pics. No one wants to figure out who you are in a group shot. And if all of your pics are group photos, women will just assume you’re the least attractive one.

DO show your full body. So you put on a few pounds over the summer, better to show them off now then on your first date.

DO check your spelling. I feel triggered, so I will not elaborate any further.

DO be honest. If you’re an Uber driver, don’t say you’re a self-employed entrepreneur. Wave that five-star rating in her face!

DO not use too many emojis or exclamation points unless you want to attract someone with half a brain and low standards. (Yup, I’m judgmental. Nope, not adding that to my profile.)

DO not show your dick.

DO fill in the About Me. Sometimes if a woman is on the fence about your looks, a good bio will make or break the match.

DO NOT listen to the advice of a woman who can’t keep a man’s attention for more than a few weeks.

At the end of the day, you pretty much have to DO you.

What are your Dos and Don’ts for online dating profiles? Leave them in the comments.

App Lingo 101: Modern Dating Terms You Should Know

Here’s a handy tip sheet if you, like me, grew up in a/s/l era of the internet.

While scrolling through the various apps I’m on (read: all of them), I’ve come across acronyms and other terms I’ve never heard before. Am I really that old?

This being the age of Siri, Alexa and Google, I’ve been able to step up my game and learn the new language of love.

Here’s a handy tip sheet if you, like me, grew up in a/s/l era of the internet.

Catfishing: The act of pretending to be someone you are not in order to attract a love interest

Demisexual: A person who find someone’s personality more attractive than his/her physical appearance

DTR: Define the relationship

Ethically non-monogamous: A new term for being in an open relationship

Ghosting: The act of cutting off all forms of communication without warning

IRL: In real life

Kittenfishing: When your dating profile is trying a little too hard to make you look good. (Is that photo from this decade?)

LTR: Long term relationship

Meetcute: The funny, adorable or unexpected story of how a couple first met

Sapiosexual: A person who finds intelligence sexually attractive or arousing

Situationship: Are you just friends? Are you in a relationship? It’s a little bit of both.

Zombie-ing: When the person who ghosted you returns from the dead, likely via text

Is there a term I didn’t cover? Drop a comment below.