Dating for connections, not marriage

Neha Seenarine, Staff Writer

The dating world is just as tough as the job market.

Illustration by Michael Clement

Single people have limited outlets to meet others in a pandemic. They are stuck with their own social bubbles and the dating apps on their phone.

Dating apps were created to help people find love, but it has adapted to hookup culture. Of course, people have different motives on dating apps. Some can be looking for something casual and others may be looking for their soulmate. I know I am not looking for a husband at 19.

The dating app environment is not welcoming. It seems as if you can only acknowledge someone based on their looks. It can be flattering when strangers compliment you, but this can also shatter someone’s confidence if they are not getting the number of matches they want.

When you match with someone, conversations are surface level. There is no personality or true value if you are looking to be committed. It can be scary to meet others because anyone can be behind the screen. Many people choose to trust strangers even though they can be a different person than what they say on their profile.

Pop culture gave us a weird idea that single people need to tie their attention to only one person. It is OK to see multiple people if you are single. However, that comes with strategy. You do not want to be stuck in a situation in which you are talking to two people that are roommates or friends. That could lead to consequences unless you like to start drama. You want to be honest and considerate toward other people’s feelings. It is one thing to mingle with people, but it is another to intentionally lead on others.

It is always good to keep your options open. You never know what the other person is thinking behind their phone screen. You cannot force people to like you over Snapchat. The other person can date as many people as they want. I remember a guy told me I was in the “top five” of the girls he talked to. You’d think you would have the other person’s full attention, but you never know what goes on behind the scenes.

When you meet someone new and start mingling, it seems to last for about two weeks. You get to know them a bit and then the conversation starts to fizzle out. The next thing you know, that person silently watches your Instagram stories for the rest of your life. Some people come back wanting to give the talking stage another round. Their intentions could be hoping to get to know you better or maybe they just want to fool around.

Online dating can be used to your advantage to grow your network. College students are in the same boat of wanting success after graduation. It is easy to make a connection that is not emotional. You can connect with them on LinkedIn or follow them on Instagram. The chances of someone ghosting you on Snapchat after four days are high, but the chances of them removing you on LinkedIn is low.

It is important to do what you think is best for yourself. You should never let someone change your motives. There are plenty of people to meet, so if you think one person is not good for you, let them go.