Is Online Dating Truly Worth it?

Is online dating really worth it? Will you really find your match? Many people think so. Others, not so much .

So many people believe in online dating, but personally I do not. Before conducting research on this topic, I decided to interview one female and one male. We will call the female Rachel and the male Patrick. Rachel has never used a dating application while Patrick has. I wanted to get some information out of them to see what we’re dealing with.

            I wanted to get a brief idea of whether dating applications were a viable source or not. Rachel said to me, “I have always been scared of using a dating application. Seeing all of those thirsty men is sort of frightening to me. I want a man who is sensitive and caring and I just don’t think my dream man would put himself out there in that way.” Hearing this made me stand by my beliefs even more. After asking Patrick his thoughts on the concept, his response was very intriguing. He said to me, “Well, I had found my ex girlfriend of five years on Tinder.” This made me pause and think maybe it is worth something. He went on to say,”But, I wish I had never started a relationship through that. It immediately created a jealous dynamic and after nearly a year of talking over the internet, I finally met her in person. After that, things went downhill. She wasn’t the person I thought she was.”

            After these conversations, I began my research. According to Adams (2016) of the Huffington Post, “online dating is not a sure-fire way to get actual dates.” (7 Drawbacks of Online Dating, According to Science). A graph is provided by Pew Research Center to demonstrate some online dating findings.

Although there are an infinite amount of dating websites out there, it is still incredibly difficult to find someone who is willing to commit. Adams goes on to say that “having an unlimited pool of potential dates can only make people feel less satisfied with their ultimate decision, but it can also lead them to freeze up and not make a choice at all” (7 Drawbacks of Online Dating, According to Science). This can be extremely exhausting for those who are online dating for more than just a fun fling.

I wanted to see if online dating sites acknowledged cons like these ones mentioned so far so I went to eharmony. Thottam mentions that your best chance of meeting someone is still by connection through a friend. She says, “despite online dating being useful and convenient, statistics currently say you’re more likely to meet “the one” by being introduced through a mutual friend. In fact, that’s how 63% of married couples met their spouse.” (The Pros and Cons of Online Dating). So, if eharmony can attest to that as well, then that’s that. Pew Research Center provides an image to help see the statistics of different people’s satisfaction.

As you can tell, even throughout this large selection pool, people still find it incredibly difficult to find a committed relationship.

Another reason online dating may not be the most full-proof way to find a life-long partner is because people lie. Simple as that! And the internet allows us to do that in a much easier way. Without face-to-face interaction it is much easier to hide the nonverbal cues that come with lying. Eharmony admits to this being an issue as well as Pew Research Center.

This is where things can get unsafe and scary.

This is where things can get unsafe and scary. After living through the #MeToo movement, being a woman is both empowering and terrifying. Sexual harassment and abuse is a constant fear and it can definitely be magnified in an environment like a dating application. I am personally not comfortable with thousands of men being able to know so much about me, and make judgements on that information, all from a quick tap of the finger. You never know who is watching you and what they are thinking so it’s important to be safe. When on a dating application, safety is definitely not guaranteed and that can be extremely frightening.

According to Markowitz (2018) from Business Insider, there are two main types of lies that online daters use. He says, “after studying over 200 messages, researches have come up with two types of lies…the first kind are lies related to self-presentation, like wanted to appear more attractive by lying about how often you go to the gym – and the second kind are relatively polite lies to avoid communication without completely closing the door on the connection.” (There are two main lies people use on dating apps – and here’s why).

It is of course not frowned upon to use websites like these ones, but all I ask is for everyone to stay safe and be respectable. You never know what the person on the other side of the screen is going through.

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