The Stigma With Online Dating and Why It Needs to Go

Let’s just acknowledge what we all know is true - dating in college is hard. More specifically, finding someone you want to date is even harder. For a lot of people, coming to college and finding a decent human being to spend time with is like trying to find the juul your friend dropped in the bar: almost impossible. College is a huge place, and in this time all that we know how to communicate by is social media. So what do we do? We turn to Tinder.

Tinder Horror Stories

Basically, every one of my girl and guy friends has Tinder. And, some of the stories that they have to tell will make you want to unlock your phone and delete the app ASAP.

Trench Coat: One of my friends met a guy who seemed decent looking/nice and decided to invite him over. And I kid you not, this man showed up wearing a trench coat and looked 40 years old. We all looked at each other, like “Oh god this couldn’t go worse.” But then it did when he tried to awkwardly kiss her mid sentence, at which point she faked that her roommate was sick so he’d leave. And that ladies and gentlemen, is why we establish contingency plans before they come over. The Mom: Someone else I know had recently broken up with his girlfriend and was looking for a casual hookup. What he thought was going to be a one and done moment, turned out to be much different. When he picked the girl up she 1) didn’t look anything like her photo 2) brought an entire bag to stay over and 3) casually slipped in that she had to leave in the morning to pick up her son.

Electric Toaster: And then there are the people like my best friend Matt who send girls messages like “Hey baby, are you a toaster because I want to take a bath with you?” If you’re like me and didn’t get the joke, it was morbid and awful and made me not only want to delete my Tinder but my entire life.

Okay, but can you actually find someone decent on there?

After all of these events happened to people I knew, I really didn’t think Tinder was somewhere you could actually meet someone - I even deleted mine after someone said “DTF Rn?” because I wanted something more serious. But, I had matched with a guy who went to a different school than me and had him on Snapchat. We were flirty for about a year, so I felt like I knew him decently well when I finally decided to throw caution to the wind and wanted to meet him.

Trust me, I thought all the same things everyone else did: “He’s probably a psycho, he’s probably just here for a hookup, why would he want to date me - we met on Tinder.”

It literally took me a year -and a couple of shots of tequila- to decide that I would give him a chance to prove me wrong about Tinder. And I had never pegged myself as someone who could meet someone online, but then I did.

Let’s talk about the stigma with online dating

Many months after meeting, who some of my friends still refer to as “Tinder Boy,” we are still together. We met once and never really looked back. Meeting someone on Tinder was the last thing that I expected, but the best thing that ever has happened. Tinder let me cross paths with someone who I may have never gotten the chance to encounter without it.

I think that we all immediately assume that people we meet online have a hidden agenda or something must be wrong with them because they can’t meet someone in person. But then we have to think, we’re on that same app top, doing that same exact thing, so can’t the same thing be said about ourselves.

When people ask us how we met, my first instinct is usually to lie and say the bar, but why? You could just as easily meet the human form of a trash can at the bar, as you could online. I think there is such a stigma behind it because it’s not what people are used to. But it should be, there are billions of people in this world and Tinder has become another way to make the world feel smaller by bringing us one step closer to meeting someone.

I’m proud to say that the absolute best person in my life, is someone who I met on Tinder. Screw the stigma that comes with it, whether it brought you a S.O, a best friend, or even just a funny memory, we all can probably say a big thanks to Tinder for something.

Image Credit: GIF1GIF2