The New Normal

When dating/hookup apps first became popular, I was in a nicely committed relationship. My first thought about them was one of disinterest and pity, wondering who would download them just to find a boyfriend, even though they are mostly used to find hookup buddies. Fast forward to a year and a half later, and I kind of get it. It’s hard finding people who will actually stick around. These days, when something breaks, get a better model. We don’t try to fix anything anymore. We trade things in; get the better phone, the better job, the better significant other. It’s something we’ve been told by the masses for a while: there is always something better out there.

These apps focus on finding a person for the night, maybe a month tops. They’re not for a real connection, just a fling. As someone who is a not-so-closeted hopeless romantic, the idea of apps dedicated just for hookups both intrigued and disturbed me. Is this what our generation is becoming? Instead of wanting something solid and lasting, do we only want a just-for-tonight type of connection? Are we too busy in our own lives, our own careers, our own hobbies, that we don’t have time to just sit down for a simple coffee and get to know somebody?

I decided to find out. Over my better judgement, and the not so subtle shattering realization that hopeless romantics are a dying breed, I downloaded three of them. This blog is dedicated to finding out what exactly happens when a decently attractive 20-something joins Tinder, Bumble, and OkCupid, in an attempt at figuring out what they are, and what I can get out of them. Each blog post will focus on a certain app, and what happened when I joined it.

Let me be clear about something though: this is not just a way to meet people. I will not be meeting anyone in person. I’m simply figuring out what kind of people use these apps, what they’re looking for, and if there is someone who actually wants more than just a temporary indulgence. I’m looking into the new wave of dating, the new thought of “There is always something better out there,” the new hookup dating craze that our culture has accepted with open arms, and if there’s even a place for the hopeless romantics anymore.

I hope so.

Kelly Spence

A 20-something who reads too many romance novels, has a soft spot for wine and anything comfortable, and has decided to blog about her experiences with creepy people on the internet. Hopefully, nothing too traumatizing will happen.

Facebook - OkCupid Profile (created for the experiment)