I often chat with my male friends about their online dating experiences. Each one prying, in search of how the opposite side of the screen is perceived. The truth is, women are equally lost when it comes to the world of digital relationships. After a couple of these conversations, I realized that this disconnect circled back to most digi-dates having a flawed foundation — their platform.
So, first things first, rewind your romance and consider your choice of platform to build solid ground. Each site or app attracts a unique type of person, making it vital that you choose the right one for your interests.
Consider this: Tinder has a reputation for being quick and effortless (you’re literally swiping based on a few photos), whereas eHarmony promotes countless success stories of steadfast romance. Pick your poison. You wouldn’t walk into Harry Rosen looking for a pair of chucks to grease up, so apply that logic to your love life too. I’m guilty of grazing over this step and jumping onto Tinder to find me a suitable man… so naïve, I know.
Though that’s not to say that Tinder doesn’t have its time and place. I’m sure you’ve been there. When the drought that has been your dating life is deepening (coupled with all your pals already being cuffed), fearlessly jumping to Tinder for comfort seems brilliant.
It costs nothing, swiping between countless options is amusing, and there’s no long-term commitment. Seems swell, right? The truth is, she’s mirroring these thoughts – she’s not investing in the app, nor is she investing in you. And if you’re only there to be comforted, these temporary twirls are only going to do your psyche more damage.
If a quick fling is really all your looking for, then download that app and get swipin’! But, if you’re searching for real love *cue Mary J. Blige’s Real Love*, then turn to eHarmony or Elite Singles. They’ve got the goods to prove they’re worth your time and money – much like the women you’ll meet. Even the Wall Street Journal (WSJ) has weighed in on their business of love, confirming that some 15 million matches are made on eHarmony every day.
Essentially, it boils down to paid platforms being better bets for finding a genuine connection. If you invest, you’ll see the return you want. You know, basic ROI (Return On Investment) rules. When breaking down the science behind the emotions, a study at an American university suggests that the more you are financially invested in searching for romance, the more emotionally invested you’ll find your suitors. When asked to choose between the perfect blind date and a less-than-perfect eHarmony date, participants took into account their sunk cost of being a paying eHarmony member, and opted for an eHarmony love story.
Again, that’s not to say that meeting your princess (or duchess, hey Meghan) on a free dating app is unheard of, but you’re more likely to find a heated summer fling on there, and we’re not sure the Queen would approve of that. My ultimate advice? Set criteria for the kind of partner you’re in search of and then research the dating platforms that reflect similar factors. Don’t invest time or money where you won’t find what you’re looking for either. If you’re aware of the depth of the water before you dive in, surely you won’t drown in the pool of love!