Our Anxiety With Dating Apps

There’s no getting around the fact that how human beings interact on a romantic/sexual/emotional basis has changed remarkably in the last decade. While dating has always undoubtedly been a complex and annoyingly stressful phenomenon, now it’s becoming very differently layered. The old rules are still there, but they’re changing. Fast. And we’re all just trying to keep up.

I love technology, and dating is a thing I’ve been known to dabble in, but I honestly think I might just be way too fucking anxious for dating apps. I’m completely aware that a good majority of young people find staring at a stranger’s carefully chosen selfie to be a fun pastime and not at all anxiety-inducing, but I just can’t do it. It’s so much work. There are an insane amount of lonely (or narcissistic) people out there, and after a while they all start to run together in a witty-message-shaped-blur. It loses novelty value very fast.

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But I know that instant gratification can be a rush, too. Tinder is narcissistic validation in the palm of your hand. I have, however, used them for long enough to know that messages on dating apps inevitably fall into a few easily definable categories.

The genuine attempt at connection.

This person read your profile top to bottom sent you off something that addresses as many in-common things as possible. They are almost definitely new to the game. These are the ones I usually respond to before freaking out and app-deleting.

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The self-aware and burned out shout into the void

This person has hit the point of copy-and-paste, and whether or not they’re trying to conceal that, it’s painfully obvious. They have stared into the romantic internet void and it has stared back into them and left them like this.

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The “let’s meet up without ever talking!” message

This person doesn’t care that you (a complete stranger) might chop them up and deposit them in trash bags on the side of the highway. They do not care. They don’t know anything about you, but they do want to know if next Thursday is a good day for grabbing coffee or getting murdered or whatever.

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The boring and forgettable pick up lines.

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The horny serial killer approach

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The Point

But it wasn’t just the messages that made me anxious. It was also the discomfort brought on by a growing awareness of a weird contradiction between intimacy and personal detachment that I couldn’t shake even after seeing a 98% compatibility score. None of it felt real or meaningful in any way. It kinda felt made up, overly common, and bullshitty.  

And it’s all this effort expended for….what? To put a rush order on sexual/emotional/romantic gratification? That didn’t seem worth it. I wondered if I was alone in thinking that it was a lot of work for very little reward, so I decided to do research.

In place of conducting a legit scientific study on my too-much-effort-sucks theory, I surveyed a sample size of a whopping two guys at work how they felt about dating apps. They both agreed that while it was fun at first, it soon began to feel predictable and like a chore. It was, they admitted, a lot of effort for little reward. Relief trickled in. It was nice to know that I wasn’t completely alone in my laziness.

They didn’t 100% share my sense of existential anxiety about the detached nature of dating apps, but they did both admit that using the app didn’t feel super intimate, and neither of them indicated that they got particularly attached to anyone they connected with.

Also, I was the only one worried about serial killers.

Potential Ted Bundys aside, I can see why people using dating apps. Technology is great, and apps like Tinder serve a purpose (whatever that may be) for a lot of people my age. But I think there is an anxiety that comes from using these apps that reflects how we’re struggling to keep up with today’s ever-changing technology while still figuring out how to do the oldest thing on the planet – sleep with attractive people.

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As for me, I’ll just be over here, waiting for people to find my social anxiety endearing. Without swiping right. 

Just, No: Most horrifying Tinder Profiles Part 1

It’s really not that hard. Tinder rates people on a scale of 0-1 so if your first impression is somewhat OK, then you probably have a good chance of matching. But in my 2 years of Tindering, people are still having trouble grasping that concept. Here is what NOT to do.

Don’t confuse Craigslist and Tinder

Not sure what a money slave is? What does simple in this context mean? Hoping to match for more informations.

Being too honest

The LOL really helps.

Having the wrong hobbies

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Being annoyingly artsy

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J. Crew over here isn’t aware that picnics with bunnies aren’t the best ways to pick up a girl in NY city.

Wearing sequin dresses
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Being naked and hairy
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Nobody wants to see your headshot for the role of Adam in Genesis Book 1. Jesus Christ, kid.

Try not to be naked while straddling your dog who looks like he just enjoyed the sex

Keeping it in Your Pants: How Not to Blow it too Quickly

There’s nothing that kills a mood, a night, an ego, and a reputation more than when you blow your load too quickly.

Men want nothing more than to perform exceedingly well for their partner because 1) the girl is happy and is more likely to want to sleep with you again, 2) she’s more likely to tell her friends and in turn boost your reputation, and 3) you get a lot of satisfaction from doing something well.

But sometimes the sex isn’t HD Brazzers.  Either from excitement, inexperience, or hiatus it’s too easy to lose our sh*t. It sucks and it’s embarrassing but it happens to the best of us.

So after much research and experimentation, the cadre of men here at The Daily Twenties have found some solutions. Some you may know others you may not, but I assure you, you’ll be amused. 

First and foremost: sex is 90% mental 10% physical. It might be counterintuitive but for men who have this problem, you need to get your head out of the bedroom, far from it. And let your primal physical instincts do the doing.

Start before you go out

When you’re in the shower and getting ready to go out, give it a tug. Don’t go out fully cocked and loaded. Curb the excitement so sex isn’t the only thing on your mind the entire night. Just make sure you dispose of it and its not in your ear. We learn from the best (see below)

Drink

But in moderation. If you’re too drunk, it won’t work. Get enough in you to loosen yourself up and take your mind off it.

Okay, you’ve successfully made it into the bedroom but the hardest part isn’t over (pun intended). 

Now for some mental discipline. You need to alter your mindset for the next 30-45 minutes.

Sports

What sport are you good at? Now close your eyes and imagine yourself on the field or the court. Put the ball in your hand and start shooting baskets, or dribbling the puck, or running for the goal. You are not getting your brains fu*ked out, you are Lebron euro stepping passed Kobe. Play the game baby and it’ll be over before you know it.

Teachers

I had a teacher in high school that I absolutely detested. She was fat, mean, obnoxious and abrasive. She was the worst and I wouldn’t dare dream to have sex with her in real life. Your mental block, however, can allow this. I know, it’s totally fu*ked up but if you imagine doing it with a gross teacher you hated, I guarantee you will be able to last as long as you want.

Family relatives

K…I’m done.

 

You get the point. Get your mind out of the bedroom and into the gutter.

Anybody else have some tips?

 

How Not to Tinder

Making a dating profile is a lot like a first date. You want to showcase your best, most adventurous, funniest, most charming self as quickly and directly as possible.

As someone who is a self-proclaimed tinder addict, I have, for lack of a better word, harassed several of my recently single / permanently single friends to get on tinder and “get on out there.” My sales pitch normally goes something like “you don’t have to meet anyone, you don’t even have to talk to anyone, just swipe, it’s fun and a good self-esteem booster.” I recently learned, through reading a Vanity Fair article and through talking to some douchey boys, that a lot of guys just swipe right to everyone and then filter through their matches instead of actually taking the time to swipe based on profile. I doubt that girls operate in this way, because, as far as I can tell, most guys absolutely, positively suck at tinder.

These tips apply to everyone, but guys, I’m mostly looking at you.

Don’t have your main picture with a bunch of other people

Right off the bat we want to know which one you are, and if you’re hiding amongst a “where’s-waldo-esque” crowd, 9/10 times I’ll swipe left.

Don’t have all of your pictures with one of your friends (especially if they look EXACTLY LIKE YOU)

Unless you explicitly state that you two are swiping together and you want to engage in a threesome or some sort of polygamous relationship – just don’t. It confuses your potential matches, and will likely deter them

Don’t use a snapchat photo in your pics

Emojis and geotags are cool and all, but it sends the message that you don’t have enough of a social life to have real pictures

Don’t use a bunch of pictures where we can’t see your face

watersports are dope, sunsets are lovely, I get it. I’m in this for your face / bod (I’m shallow, sue me) not your shredding / love of landscapes

Please, please, please don’t post shirtless pics where I can’t see your face

A shirtless pic is welcome, I’d love to see what you’re working with, but if you don’t show your face in the picture, I think you’re creepy.

NO MIRROR SELFIES

I refuse to explain this any further.

Don’t have less than 5 pictures

I understand that 6 is a tall order, especially for boys, who for whatever reason are generally photographed less often than their female counterparts, but if you have less than 5, I’ll automatically assume that you’re either a catfish or you’re deeply insecure and thus not someone I want to match with

Tinder Plus = “Swiping in ______”

Don’t buy tinder plus. Do less.

Now that I’ve given you some pointers for your picture choices, on to the bio:

Keep it short and sweet, please don’t tell me your life story, or that you’re not looking for a hookup, keep the mystery alive – at least until we match

Please, for the love of god, don’t write “eat clean, train dirty,” or “slayer of negativity.” Ain’t nobody got time for that. I have to believe there are some people out in this crazy world who get turned on by that, but it makes me want to match with you just so I can tell you how much you fucking suck.

Last but not least, please don’t talk about how good you are at making breakfast, or how you’ll rock my world.

Why You Should Never Buy a Girl a Drink

“Hey, can I buy you a drink?”

99% of men lead with this as their go-to pick up line. Unless you’re T-Pain or trying to be ironic, or both at the same time, it shows you have nothing else to offer her other than a feeble attempt at a conversation. She just won, not you.

I’m not saying don’t buy her a drink at all, but she needs to deserve that free drink. That drink costs an hour’s worth of latte art, make it count.

Chances are the girl already has a drink, in that case, don’t ask to buy her another drink. If she doesn’t have one and you want to talk to her, resist the urge. Chat her up; see if you have a shot before you bust out the plastic.

I’m not saying don’t buy her a drink at all, but she needs to deserve that free drink.

Think of talking to girls at a bar like you’re talking to them in line at the post office or a restaurant (I know it sounds weird but it’s a mindset; change the way you think and you can change the way you act). Keep it simple, unthreatening and like you’re actually interested in what she has to say.

“I see you’re here with a bunch of your girlfriends, what are you celebrating?”

“Oh, we’re not.”

“Oh no? it looks like it, you’re all dressed up looking good tonight, thought there was an occasion.”

If all she’s looking for is a drink, you’ll know in a minute if she starts to slip away into the bar crowd. In that case, she’s not worth it. Keep moving and stick to your guns.

Sometimes girls will actually ask you, “So are you going to buy me a drink?”

And just like I taught you, “Why? Do you think you deserve one? Tell me why I should buy you a drink, sell me on it.”

Of course deliver this with a touch of sarcasm and charm but girls love that stuff. They like to be played with, but don’t be a dick. If you can show some confidence, and a twinge of cockiness, you might be looking at a real conversation…and maybe some chicken and sex.

Some girl in there definitely deserves a drink from you. Be the 1% and go find her.