Lifestyle

"Tinder Made Me Depressed": Why The Dating App Is Bad For Your Feelings

Yeah, the dating app itself might have been upgraded, adding in a few more features like a “Super Like” (self explanatory) and a “Rewind” option (because sometimes our thumbs think quicker than our brains) for budding lovers and daters in the digital world of romance, but is it really effective?

According to the Internet, yes it might. A quick search could show you a handful of Tinder success stories that will make you believe in love and tales of people getting married after meeting on Tinder. Aww, cute but not really. You’d have to tell people in the future that you picked your spouse from a sushi belt of girls and guys — how romantic is that? (Answer: no)

But scepticism aside, while Tinder might work for some people, it might not be for everyone.

Image Credit: Christina Lu via Buzzfeed

Is It Real Life Or Is It Just Fantasy

“I started Tinder as a social experiment” is what a lot of people tell you when they download the app. And like everyone, social media manager Darren got on the Tinder bandwagon to meet people and potential dates with similar music tastes. Hopeful and excited, he frequently logged on the app whenever he could to swipe around, reading other people’s bios intently and going through their photos before deciding if he was going left or right.

He’d look forward to waking up the next day with a list of matches and deliberate a little before initiating conversation, mostly asking about their music tastes. He did it for about a week before he felt that the routine was beginning to bite hard.

“Most of the time I start out asking them what they’re listening to, or an album they like and their replies — usually one liners — make it difficult to continue the conversation. It always feels like a one-sided conversation,” Darren says, “It feels like a very prolonged session of small talk which I hate.”

What was most disappointing, he said, was that the failed conversations from his matches just spurred him to do more swiping, this time without going through the bios but just by judging the photos to widen his pool. There was just no sense of progress being on Tinder.

Image Credit: recode.net
Image Credit: recode.net

After weeks of this routine, Darren slowly began to lose interest in the following up and swiping — and began to grow resigned and detached. His hopes of finding true romance on the platform backfired and he was back to what he did on Tinder B.C. — single without any dating prospects, and a touch of sadness. “I got quite disheartened, considering that I started out on Tinder to meet like-minded musicheads, got sucked in with the dating and romance angle Tinder was selling and then now Tinder made me depressed,” he admitted.

Wrong Channel

For copywriter Marianne, however, Tinder did not leave a huge impact on her life. “I think people get it wrong. People get on Tinder to date, to meet their future girlfriend, or wife. They want to settle down with the first person they hit the right chord with. And that’s how people use Tinder wrong,” she says confidently.

For Marianne, she was unfazed when all her friends got on the dating app preoccupied with the notion of finding love. She readily joined the app but set herself a few rules. “I only swipe right for DJs, club owners and bartenders,” she said. Why? The perks, she explains, from getting a free pass to a show, free entry at clubs, to free drinks at the bar. “Sometimes they know also lah that I’m sort of using them but nothing bad has ever happened actually,” she reveals.

“I refuse to let an app dictate my love life. If I wanted a boyfriend, I’d go out and meet people in real life, not through a phone screen,” Marianne states.

Bad Advertising

“Another problem I have [with] Tinder is how badly people ‘advertise’ themselves there,” Darren says, showing me some of the profiles he came across. Grainy selfies were the norm, and so was bad lighting, bios that were jibberish, distasteful photos and bland bios — there were pages and pages of these. “How do you expect me to keep positive going through so many profiles like this? I would think they’d at least put an effort in the writing part,” he adds.

While it’s easy to go on record and say that Tinder sucks, and didn’t work for you, let’s just take a step back. In the age of advanced technology, we’ve become so good at looking for relationships through apps like Tinder and its kind, but so bad at being in relationships. There’re new age couple problems like FOMO (Fear Of Missing Out), trust issues, vicious mind games, manipulative behaviour and more.

Image Credit: Twitter
Image Credit: Twitter

Perhaps it’s time to focus less on deceptive pictures and one-line bios, and commit to finding someone based on shared interests. Go to the gym, go to after work mixers, talk to people at the supermarket and cafés, meet friends of friends, go to gallery openings, get rejected in real life, go out there and fail — practice patience, understanding, listening, and relationship skills. Then maybe you’ll find something good.

Or you know, be pro at Tinder and never have your heart broken by silly boys and girls who never reply you.

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