How to Stop Speeding and Re-Start Romance
Among the recommended sites, one suggested was Grey and Farrar. For a mere £15,000 (or ‘more’ for the Bespoke service), they allege to be able to pin down your soulmate without you having to so much as lift a finger; except to enter your PIN code.
After seeing this, I found myself thanking the internet gods for the likes of uncomplicated free downloads like Tinder, Happn et. al. Then I checked myself. Should we really be thanking anyone for these apps?
I have used both the aforementioned apps. Back at Leeds University, Tinder was a bit of a laugh. I didn’t go on a single date, but I did get a pleasant ego massage when I received the affirmation of a match screen, even if it was from my housemate. But on moving to London, something in my attitude towards these apps imperceptibly changed. I found myself actually going on dates –with strangers too. And what’s more, I enjoyed it. I enjoyed meeting people with question marks hovering over their heads rather than exclamation marks (translated as ‘THAT GIRL ON YOUR HOCKEY TEAM HAS SLEPT WITH HIM, HE’S OUT OF BOUNDS!’). People who were concerned with what I was doing, my family, my hobbies and interests too.
However, I have since fallen back out of love with Tinder and its ilk. In my opinion, the millennial attitude towards dating is down to online dating: that is, relationships as being disposable, replaceable, a temporary distraction. I’ve heard a number of troubling stories. One of a man who discovered his live-in girlfriend of three years was active on Tinder, exposed when she was seen straying into the postcode of the boyfriend’s single mate. Worse still; two individuals arranged to meet, only for the bloke to bolt whilst the girl was buying a round at the bar. Or the most humiliating of all, the pair who went on a number of dates, including the obligatory ‘meet the family’ date (her meeting his), only for the man to sever communication completely once she had stayed the night.
This last story is what I find most disturbing about these apps – that there can be a played-out agenda, a deception that ends with one of the pair disappearing into the vortex of the internet without so much as a ‘thanks for the memories’. It is very difficult to gauge in the preliminary few dates whether both parties are there for the same reason. It is also worryingly easy to be duped.
Due to their ease of use, Tinder and Happn have paradoxically made it more difficult than ever to enter into a committed relationship. If on first meeting there is just one element of the person that is not to their fancy, the other will likely jump straight back on Tinder to search for the next candidate. Similarly, if a couple have been together for a short while but have yet to define the terms of the relationship, one small bump in the road could result in the immediate breakdown. It is simply too easy to get back on your phone and meet someone with a different opinion on politics, religion, or TOWIE.
My mother spoke to me about my grandparents’ marriage of 50+ years. She made the point that when my grandparents married in 1954,