*photo by Adrianna Calvo
The app dating world is a very strange place.
Recently on the app Happn, I was “charmed” by a fit and attractive gentleman. He was a little bit older than me, and stated early on in our conversation that he was looking for “love”, on the app and in life. When he asked me what my reasons for being on the app were, I responded with “I’m not quite sure”, followed up with “to meet new people I guess, and see what happens.” And while my answers may have been a bit on the vague side, they were honest in their uncertainty.
To put it simply, I don’t really like dating apps, at least not for their conventional purpose. I’ve had great luck using Tinder to recruit men for my business HiM promotions. I’ve met fellow music lovers and aspiring entrepreneurs through Happn. I even managed to score an intern for both my businesses through one or the other (they all kind of blur into one after a while). But since my one new year’s aspiration (I hate the R word) is to be more open to the idea of that other R word I hate, or at least the idea of expanding the range of love in my life, I decided to add these apps to my arsenal of meeting new people in a light, fun and pressure-free way. The results as you can imagine, have been less than stellar. When the straightforward business aspect of my original usage is removed, the multiple layers of the insanity of dating in 2016 were revealed. Which leads me to this week’s misconceptions – app dating edition.
Vague intentions are not an invitation for sex.
Circling back to my introduction, the aforementioned fit, handsome man that I was chatting with turned out to be less than impressed with my vague purpose for being on Happn. But rather than bidding me adieux with a simple “I’m actually looking for something serious, best of luck!” he decided that I was now a target for his secondary Happn mission, a get laid quick scheme. What would start as interesting conversations would quickly and sometimes very disrespectfully be turned to the sexual, time and again. While I’m no prude, I will take offense to someone telling me that I must be sleeping with my employees (…) or that I must be some sort of pimp mistress. One look at my bank account would belie the latter, and a modicum of respect would prevent the former from ever being said. When I called this Casanova out for his antics, he told me that my lack of “real” (i.e. purely romantic) intentions on the app clearly meant that I was only looking for something casual, which he took as an invitation to speak to me in that manner. Rape-culture attitude aside, getting “I AM ONLY LOOKING FOR SEX SO PLEASE SPEAK TO ME THAY WAY” from “looking to meet new people and go from there” was quite the leap.
A sexy picture is not an invitation for sex.
I had to remove this picture from my profile because of the extremely strange, overtly sexual and sometimes blatantly offensive response it would receive from men, on multiple apps. No, I am not a dominatrix. No, I am not going to spank you. No, I’m not coming over to have sex with you just because my cleavage is on display. It’s just a picture of me in my favorite spikey bra, an article of clothing that is shamefully too challenging to integrate in my daily wardrobe. It was part of a Halloween costume. Yes, actually. And now thanks to the ever confusing and increasingly annoying power of the male psyche, a picture of a fun night in a fun outfit has been turned into a battleground for my sanity. Sorry normal dudes on dating apps, your crazy bros ruined it for you..
This isn’t the “vagina delivery app”(AKA being on a dating app is not an invitation for sex)
I sometimes legitimately wonder if men confuse Tinder, Happn or the like for a freakish hybrid of pornhub and the Pizza Pizza app. Stop asking me if I want to come over for sex right after we match, especially if you’re too lazy to use full sentences to do so. I thought we were done with the letters DTF as a legitimate form of speech after Snookie was blighted by pregnancy a second time. Craigslist has an app now, and I’m sure some horny programmer out there is creating the hooker extension so his horny and less tech savvy breathren can swipe for sex to their hearts desire. Start saving your pennies boys.
A lack of immediate response is not a reason to rage.
I have a feeling Tinder removed their “last online” feature because of the stalker and subsequent ragey behavior it seemed to incite in seemingly well adjusted young men. The amount of times I had men flip out at me on Tinder because I didn’t immediately respond to them but appear to have logged back on was staggering. Hell, poor Emy had to report one guy for that same behaviour. It’s frighteningly easy for a man to go from cool to crazy if Tinder behaviour is to be believed. Chill the fuck out dudes, if we actually want to talk to you, we’ll get back to you. A tirade of abusive language followed by a barrage of insults and threats isn’t going to make us hop to it any faster.
An open mind is not the enemy.
I’ve met a multitude of people that have served a multitude of purposes in my life thanks to Tinder, Happn and the like. At their core these apps are just other means social networking through technology – a tool to connect people that may not normally connect in real life. While I haven’t gone on many dates, and while I certainly haven’t found love, I’ve met some awesome people and hope to continue to do so. There’s no need to malign me for that, or feel personally insulted that I may not be on this app for the sole purpose of providing emotional and physical comfort to every man I happen to swipe right on (yes, that has happened). So next time you find yourself chatting with someone who’s not just on a mission for love, sex or whatever comes in between, keep an open mind, as he or she clearly has.
It’s a brave new world, we’re all just trying to figure it out. Let’s try to be a little kinder to each other while we do it.