The Realities Of Finding Actual Love On Tinder
The Debrief: We've seen the gross/lol messages, but what's it like to genuinely fall in love with a Tinder date?
Photographed by Marjorie Lacombe
We've all seen gross lines on Tinder, hilarious putdowns on Tinder, hilarious pictures on Tinder, but what about genuinely meeting the love of your life? You can sometimes sort of forget that love is often the point of dating apps, because you're so busy talking about how shit the last Tinder date you went on was and how awkward the sex was the time before.
But what is it actually like to find The One (if you believe in that sort of thing - at the very least, A One) via Tinder? We spoke to two girls who'd done it - Lynsay, 26, from Boston and Kerry 29, from the UK who went over to Paris before meeting the LOHL (both an acronym for Love Of Her Life and droll way to say the word 'lol') - to find out.
NB: this post is not sponsored by Tinder. We were just curious.
You won't expect it
Yawn, yawn, yawn-di-yawn, just as your nan tells you that you're most likely to fall in love 'when you're not looking', a bonafide Tinder date will creep up on you when you least expect it. 'I didn't plan on finding a boyfriend on Tinder,' says Lynsay. 'I never took it seriously. The first night I used it, I spent an hour lying on a friend's bed giggling as we looked at profiles. I was and am still shocked that I found someone... I had been on Tinder about a month and had honestly lost track of the number of dates I went on. Some weekends I was doing two dates a day. I don't know whether to be proud or ashamed of myself.' Proud. Always proud. But still, it was the same for Kerry, who found her boyfriend in Paris after moving there from London, so there must be something in it. 'I never expected to meet anyone to be honest, but can attest to the fact that there are diamonds among the rough! It's so worth a few extra swipes,' she says. 'There is no way we would have met any other way, so I have a lot to thank Tinder for!'
Guys may be weirder about it than girls
Oddly, Lynsay found that her new boyfriend's male friends were more likely to make remarks than her female friends. 'It has been a little awkward telling some of his guy friends - I think men more often than not perceive Tinder as a way to get laid and, while women do too, they also want to date rather than just use it to have sex. As one male friend of his tactfully put it: "So, this relationship was a bit of a surprise for both of you".' Interesting.
Telling the older generations is a bit tricky
Gone are the days when people met at ice cream parlours on a Saturday night. Now, you're more like to meet on a Tinder date at a pub round the corner from work on a Wednesday, having had no idea what he looks like aside from carefully selected Facebook photos. 'It is tricky, but with much older generations you can just use the old 'we met online - everybody is meeting online nowadays!' spiel. They will then probably move on to the million other questions they have lined up for such interrogations.' You maybe don't want to mention Tinder to your Daily Mail reading gran, so keeping it vague is a good idea in case she has a Google and sees all sorts of media horror stories.
You'll get judgement, but (quite frankly) fuck it
The odd bit of smirking and raised eyebrows is one thing, but if people genuinely make negative judgements about how you found your partner, then they're not worth worrying about. 'Some people will always be judgemental unless you met at a family wedding or during a romantic hike up Mount Kilimanjaro,' says Kerry. 'But they can keep their Jane Austin novels, 'cause some of us live in the real world and aren't sat around waiting for our Darcy to finally show up. As long as you are careful, then meeting new people is a good thing and who knows where it could go?'
You'll 'know' when it's happening
'It' being 'actual love'. Not in a romantic Disney way, but in a general 'Oh this isn't quite the same as the other dates' way. 'Adam's sense of humor and conversational style made me feel respected. He knew that I was smart and didn't try to win me over with bullshit compliments and typical first date one-liners,' says Lynsay. 'The other Tinder dates just really felt like dates with the same conversations over and over - but my first date with Adam just felt like meeting a new friend... a hot friend, that I was really into. Ha.' You'll know if it clicked, so don't spend ages trying to make it work with people who don't feel like new friends #toptip.
You will become a walking advert for Tinder...
Any single friends you have will cling on to your story for hope as they swipe through a fresh selection of twats each day, searching for the one guy who can make normal conversation and doesn't smell like hamsters, but you've got to help them maintain perspective. 'I'm a total Tinder evangelist for my single friends who want to date and have fun,' says Lynsay. 'But if you approach any dating situation with the intention of finding a life partner, you will fail because meeting someone and trying to size them up as a potential partner/spouse on the first few dates makes you manic. Tinder is for fun.' And the more fun you find it, the better vibes you'll give off, the better people you attract, yada yada yada. But seriously, it's true.
You're part of the new romantic movement, in a way.
Of course people may lament the end of old-fashioned romance - but Tinder is only as romantic or as unromantic as you make it. And you can't deny that it's definitely becoming A Thing to marry someone you met on Tinder. 'I have quite a few friends who met through various online means aka OKCupid. It's pretty standard now, a ways and means for busy people to find other busy people. Plus it allows you cast a much wider net than your usual social group group,' says Kerry. 'If you find something good then it doesn't really matter how you found it.' Well said. And it's not like we're only ever meeting people on Tinder these days - it's just one method amid a million other chance methods of finding someone. Unless of course you spend your whole life locked away on it. In which case, probably go outside mate.
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Photographed by Marjorie Lacombe
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