Take it from someone who met their partner on Tinder
Nowadays, so many people I talk to have stories about hookups or one-time dates they met on Tinder. The app has become synonymous with casual sex and dating, not relationships.
Ironically, according to statistics released by eHarmony in 2021, 60 per cent of female Tinder users are actually looking for a relationship, not just a hookup.
So what’s causing this disparity between what people want from dating apps and what they’re actually getting from them?
Dating apps like Tinder are based on the idea of swiping through potential partners by making a quick judgement about whether or not the person on your screen is a good match for you. This means that photos are the biggest factor that lead to swiping right. Swiping based on pure lust and attraction works for a hookup, but developing a relationship requires a deeper connection that goes beyond superficial conversations.
Physical attraction to one another can lead to a quick and easy hookup with little to no talking. However, for an actual date, whether it’s for coffee, dinner, or drinks, conversation is a crucial requirement. If you are unable to talk to your date, how could you end up in a relationship with them?
This is why so many people struggle to develop long-term relationships on dating apps. The inherent structure of these apps places the focus on appearances, not personalities, and they are not built to find deeper connections. Because of this, it takes a lot more effort to meet a long-term partner this way, but it is possible.
When I tell people I met my boyfriend on a dating app, not many people even blink at the mention of Tinder. Its use for casual sex and dating is socially acceptable and talked about often. However, when I say that we are in a long-term relationship that didn’t start as a casual hookup, people are thrown off.
I know of many relationships that began on Tinder that have only lasted a short period of time. Though my boyfriend and I aren’t the only couple to come from online dating and last longer than a few months, it feels like we’re in the minority.
Relationships from dating apps typically start off as casual hook ups, and for some, the natural next step is to start exclusively seeing each other. In some cases, those couples never really thought about whether they could communicate or if they were just physically attracted to each other. As long as you’re attracted to them, the relationship could last, right?
Apps like Tinder are inherently not built to find those kinds of connections. After all, Tinder’s logo is a flame and tinder is what’s used to start a fire that will burn bright but ultimately be put out.
However, if a relationship is what you’re looking for, it is possible. Long-term relationships mean putting in the effort to both find and foster a deeper connection.