The Unexpected Benefits of Tinder

by Kathryn Hensch

Many people meet their significant other in college. Those people also probably dorm at their school, giving them more opportunities to meet others. I’m not one of those people. Instead, I spend half of my week commuting to/attending my small school and half working in retail customer service. The only new people I meet are creepy men on the subway and angry customers; both are not potential special someone material. The solution? Tinder… maybe.

At the very least, it’s great for making friends.

I’m only twenty years old so I’m not sweating out the possibility that I may never find someone. I’m okay with being single, but everyone gets a little lonely sometimes.  So when a friend first told me about the app, I downloaded it just to see what the deal was in hopes that, like Britney Spears said, my loneliness wouldn’t be killing me no more. The concept is pretty simple: swipe right on a person’s picture if you like them and left if you don’t. If the person you liked swipes right on your picture as well, you’ll be able to talk to them. I haven’t dated anyone seriously since, like, 2011. Figuring I had nothing to lose, I began swiping. 

I came across a few guys that were up my alley and was pretty happy when they liked me back. Some had no personality (the option to un-like someone when this happens is liberating compared to enduring aimless conversation in real life), while others offered interesting conversations about music and politics. It was like being at what I assume a mixer is like, but in the comfort of my pajamas. Eventually, a few conversations moved from the app into text messages. A slim number of those text message conversations turned into dates.

While Tinder hasn’t gotten me a boyfriend, I have become friends with nearly everyone I’ve been on a date with. It’s a benefit I didn’t expect but certainly appreciate. Though all of the guys were kind, it became clear after five minutes of conversation that talking to some of them virtually was better than doing it in person. With others, I liked them enough to see them multiple times but never got further than that. 

What I’ve found most interesting about my dating app experience is just how many people I know are on there. It’s comforting knowing that I’m not the only one. As the app has blown up, it’s become less of a “looking for a relationship” atmosphere and more of a casual, social media-esque place to tell people you think they’re good looking. It’s fun and cures boredom.

I don’t look for someone to be with anymore, just someone to talk to when it’s three A.M. and I’m the middle of a Netflix binge.

Right now, the closest thing I have to a boyfriend is my dog. I’m okay with it because he’s one handsome devil and he treats me right. Being single is fine because a human who likes me enough to be with me will roll around eventually. It might be the guy who messaged me saying that I could have the whole basket of breadsticks to myself if we went to Olive Garden together. 

Image via: Hello Talalay

Read more on 

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