You know you deserve roses, but somehow here you are. It’s 2:00 in the morning, and just as you’re about to fall asleep alone, that text comes through from him saying, “You up?”
This is college – a place where you no longer get flowers, but rather late-night texts, random Snapchats – and if you’re really lucky – a like from him on your newest Instagram picture. If you’re a hopeless romantic like me, you can’t help but wonder – what went wrong? And more importantly, has technology killed romance? While I can’t say for a fact that chivalry is dead, I can say that technology has made it a whole lot harder to find a knight in shining armor. This is why:
1. Internet Stalking Culture
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You meet a guy in a class, at a party, or at work; and while you two had a great conversation, talking isn’t going to give you what you need. So, you log on. To Instagram, to Facebook, to Snapchat, to Twitter – we can find out a lot. However, the problem is that we find out too much, and it can drive us crazy. Whether it’s seeing him like other girl’s pictures, friend other girls on Facebook, or have a different Snapchat best friend, there are all these new modes of stalking his behavior and judging him for it. Wouldn’t things be so much easier if we just waited to find out who people are based on how they treat you in person?
2. Social Media Games
In the generations before us, dating seemed to be pretty simple. If a guy liked a girl, he would ask her on a date. Easy enough, right? Wrong. Social media etiquette in dating is an entirely new language to learn that leads to unnecessary stress. Before you can even get a date, there needs to be this dance of who should text first, how fast someone should respond, how quickly you should Snapchat, whether or not you can double text, and so on. These little insignificant nuisances have taken over dating and become an essential part of the process.
3. Easy Access to Hookups
Who knew the act of swiping right could unhinge modern-day dating? While these apps are great for people who do want only to hook up, it severely damages the dating pool for those who want a real relationship. All it takes is logging into an account to find a person willing to have sex, and the options are constant, endless, and easy to access. Paying for someone’s dinner on a date has become a chore when all you need is your phone and an app to get precisely what you want without the added expectations.
4. Focus is on Phones, Not People
We’ve all been on that one date where you look across the table, and your date’s eyes aren’t on yours but rather are glued down to his phone. Maybe you’ve even been guilty of this, too. The problem is that focus is lost when we’re so caught up in the distracting technology. Even if you do find a person willing to date seriously, you’ll face those moments where the attention isn’t entirely on you. Building a serious, committed relationship is hard enough as is, but has become even more difficult with this lack of focus.
5. Romance Takes Time… Texting Doesn’t
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The overarching issue with dating in the modern age comes from this new culture in which we can get whatever we want – and fast. We can Google search information, order packages, or reach a person at lightning speed. This fast-paced lifestyle has spilled over and made dating seem outdated. Our generation doesn’t want to go slow, but romance takes time. Will we ever find love? Or will we always see frogs instead of princes? Right now, the outlook seems dim.