I know, you thought dating after 25 in 2020 is hard enough already, right? Well buckle up buttercup, it’s corona time! Here we are stuck at home, overwhelmed by 2 months’ worth of loneliness, boredom, desperation, fear, and whatever other feelings this virus brought to the table. But more than ever, everyone is also vaguely aware that they want or need a relationship.
I had a lot (I mean, like a looooot) of time to think about this whole situation. Dating in itself, which has already changed so much in the last decade, has morphed yet again. Suddenly, there are more risks to consider, but also the thrill of potential reward. It’s the constant battle between keeping a safe distance vs craving human connection in a time of unavoidable loneliness.
Will the relationships that start during these uncertain times last? What is the effect of isolation on singles who haven’t yet found their partners, much less start families? And most importantly, President Cyril, is hugging and kissing really a thing of the past?
Who said online dating is dead?
In 2020, it’s not exactly rare for romance to blossom from behind a screen. But during lockdown, dating apps have reported an overflow of users from all over the world. Now, I could bore you with the stats, but I’d much rather discuss what happens when you swipe right.
First thing’s first, you now need to re-consider the area you swipe in. 30 km? Nooo my sister, you’ll need a permit for that. And I’m pretty sure everyone’s stalking game has also stepped-up by a 100% in this time. If he says he doesn’t have plans for the weekend, is it because he’s in self-quarantine, or is this just how he spends his weekends? Who knows! One thing that won’t change is that dating apps will have its typical hits, some misses, and a whole lot of gross messages. What better time to embrace it, than now.
For the guys reading this, here’s something to remember:
Yes, we keep up with the news. No, we don’t want to talk about Rona.
If you use any Covid-related pick-up lines like “If Corona doesn’t take you out, can I?”, we’re 100% going to “end meeting”.
The dreaded (and now longed-for) first-date
Has anyone ever thought about where the first date will take place going forward? We’ll no longer be able to wait in a restaurant saying “I’m the one in the red dress” (I know this only happens in movies, but a girl can only dream). Chances are that you’ll now have your first date combined with an essentials-shopping spree. (Top tip: make sure you shop at the same Spar). I’m not sure if the isles are even 1.5 meters apart, but if you start at the fruit and veg section and work your way through to the cleaning supplies, you should know enough about each other to call the second date.
Gone are the days of first dates IRL. Who knows how long until we will hold another person’s hand without fighting the urge to soak it in sanitiser first? On the bright side, the awkward first hug is now a thing of the past. Absolutely no one looks sexy while doing the elbow-touch, so you’re not alone.
How did the type of relationship we are looking for change?
After two months of solitude, a lot of us are craving adventure and excitement, but our need for other people has become a higher priority. Previously it was almost too easy to use the excuse that you’re busy at work, you’ve got family to attend to, or that you have your weekend plans with your friends. Now, there’s no room for bullshit. You know that “perfect” list you had since primary school? Toss it out. It’s all about the personality now (finally). Have a real conversation for a change, the person might really surprise you.
(Insert motivational quote here)
This might be the longest time you had to spend with yourself, ever. And it might seem difficult. I mean, nobody knows how long this will go on for, and with many of us now living in confined conditions, who knows what the long-lasting implications will be for our relationships. But, since everything is upside down anyway, here’s a bit of advice: don’t wait for someone to text you first. Dating is like sharing a plate of nachos, if you see a chip you want, take it. Or somebody else will.