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Sex + Relationships

10 Millennials On How They Met Their SO Without a Dating App

This article has been syndicated from Daily Cup of JOJO, an InfluenceHer Collective Member. Read the full post here

Can we all agree that the search for finding “the one” is exhausting? From Tinder dates that turn into horror stories, to blind dates that just don’t work out, it’s hard to trust the dating process. Meeting potential partners in itself can be so difficult. As much as Iove a good Bumble swipe sesh, how do people actually meet IRL?

I think when we go on these dating app cleanses we hope to find what we were looking for online, in real life. Well, I want you to know that finding someone during this online dating pause, love is a real possibility. Here are my favorite stories from millennials that found their S.O. without the use of a dating app. If you’ve had no luck online, hopefully, these will give you some inspo. 


Igor was my cousin’s best friend in high school. I was a junior in high school and I was at my cousin’s house when Igor and his friend knocked on my her door, as they usually did almost every day to see if she wanted to hang out. That particular time my cousin and I were alone in her house so she had me go check the door with her. When she realized it was Igor and another mutual friend she opened the door and I walked back to the kitchen unbothered. Then Igor and his friend asked who I was and so my cousin introduced us. From then we kept all hanging out as a big group and Igor and I got to know each other.


We were at a super bowl party 3 years ago at our mutual friend’s house. I was actually rude to him in the beginning but after tequila, he and I had a strip off (he won) a couple of weeks later I invited him to come downtown with us and the rest is history. 


On July 2, 2015, an old friend of mine asked if I wanted to go out with her to a local karaoke bar. She also texted “there’s also a guy that we want you to meet… not trying to NOT set you up, but you know…  (winky face).” So I went. My friend and I got to the karaoke bar and it took about 20 min before me and Josh (my friendly set up) warmed up to each other, but the conversation was easy and the dude had some killer freaking vocals. We flirted a lot and its cliché but the sparks were flying. I’d never been set-up before, this wasn’t a Tinder thing, we didn’t meet because we asked for it. We just had mutual friends who knew us well and figured we’d be a great match.

Two days later, on the 4th of July, Josh texted me and asked if I wanted to go on a zip-lining adventure, so I said absolutely. The day was so much fun and we had a blast. I stayed the night and we saw each other almost every day.April marks two years of happily living in the Chicago suburbs together. This July we’ll celebrate 4 years together and exactly 3 months after that, October 11, 2019, I’ll get to call him my husband.


I went to a local concert art festival that my friend was playing and only knew my friend John. John was standing with a guy and I approached them both. I ended up spending more time with John’s friend than John, and he ended up asking to add me on Facebook, and eventually out on a first date, and then we dated for about a year and a half!


I met Brian while working at a local coffee shop. He was one of our regulars, and I knew his order like the back of my hand. Each time he came in our manager would always make small talk with him and I would try to join in but I was low key always nervous. I would also always make sure his drink was ready by the time he walked in.


Then one day I was on Instagram scrolling through the people who followed me. I saw a name I really didn’t recognize but the only mutual was the coffee shop Instagram. So I requested to follow back, soon to find out it was Brian. After that he would slide in the DMs anytime I posted a selfie to my story. That led to flirting back and forth. At this point, I was only working a couple days a week because of graduation so the next time I saw him was right around Christmas. He brought in a gift for me while I was working and it was this little Star Wars painting he made. I just about died that someone who hardly knew me painted me something so beautiful.

Christie and Catie

We were working in food safety at a chocolate factory, and Christie was Catie’s boss. We ended up having to work through a huge audit together where we had to stay at work really late every night for months. Eventually, we started talking about our lives and then fell in love. We’ve been together for 3.5 years.


When I met my boyfriend, I wasn’t actively looking to date anyone. I had a run around with dating apps the year prior and decided that whatever will be will be. My boyfriend and I had the same group of friends and would constantly be hanging out with these people but never really having one on one conversations. After about a month I started developing feelings which I was like “Woah! No, stop, don’t ruin the friend group.” I decided to make the first move in flirting and would text him random things that fell in line with what he liked. Slowly but surely we started hanging out one on one, flirting more, and getting to know each other. We went on our first official date about a month and a half after meeting each other & immediately started dating and apparently that worked because it’s now 3 years strong.

Malia and Jeff

I was working as a cocktail waitress in downtown Las Vegas at the time while in College. I wouldn’t get off until 2 or 3 am and being the night owl I was, I would have to wind down before returning home for bed. I am also a singer and recently started performing small shows in the downtown Las Vegas arts community at that time. I found a bar on my walk to my car one night called Don’t Tell Mama, I immediately noticed the live pianist with the opportunity to sing live. I went in and there was this cute blonde guy bartending. Immediately, we became best friends. We bonded over our love to sing.

By the end of the night, he gave me his number. I, unfortunately, lost it so I went back two days later to get it again. We would spend 3-4 times a week going to get food once we both got off at 3 downtown. This led to him asking me on a date and on the second date, I never returned back to the place I was renting from. By the end of the month, I had moved into his apartment then a week later we got our first house together. We would create our little family of two doggies and us. 7 months later, he proposed. Now a year and a half later, we will be getting married in 2 months outside the city he grew up in California! 


A friend (Mario) invited my friend (Zach) out to Mexican restaurant and party lounge, to which Zach let me know he was headed there for the evening. I was so single, so obviously I just wanted to have fun. It’s Latin night, so I’m dancing with these guys to which I had no clue Zach and Mario were friends and ended up making out with one of them.
I saw Alan while I was out dancing with other guys on the dance floor. After I saw Alan, I couldn’t stop thinking about him. I looked for him but I never saw him again that night. 
Two weeks later, Zach invites me to another bar where Alan & Mario show up. We are all sitting at a booth and Alan is very quiet so I asked him if he wanted to get a drink, to which he agreed. While at the bar, a song I like came on so naturally I had to go dancing to it and I made him go with me. The rest is history: here we are, engaged and living together.



I met my partner of almost five years at university. I went to a taster session for Drama Society, and there he was! I should say that it very much was not “love at first sight” – I frequently actually forget about this very first meeting, and even when I remember, I have to really strain to remember him being there. The first meeting that I properly remember was a few weeks in when we were cast in an audio drama together. He says he thought I was cute at the time, but he, again, didn’t make a huge impression, and I actually dated another cast member for six months.
Anyway, after I had broken up with that first uni boyfriend, I started to notice him a bit more — and friends started saying that they thought we would be cute together. This all came together when some friends were throwing a house party. He and I spent all day helping out and flirting (including a very cute light-fixing incident where I stood on a chair and he ‘helped’ me by holding me by the waist), and midway through the party, we ended up making out in the garden. And that’s it – we’ve been together ever since.
Do these stories prove that meet-cutes happen beyond swiping right? I sure hope so. Whether you meet your SO at a bar, in a class, or on Hinge, it’s always an exciting feeling to see how your new flame will flourish.

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