This is a GUEST post from Mr. Flirt.
Online dating can be great way to meet someone new, there’s no doubt about that. But, what are the psychological effect that goes along with it?
In today’s age, there are a lot of people spend a lot of time on the computer, be it for work or for pleasure; so it would make sense that we use the internet to find companionship — whether it is a casual fling, a lasting friendship, a romance, or try our hand lesbian dating. However, with that convenience, is it all that it’s cracked up to be? Are we putting ourselves through an emotional and mental roller coaster for nothing?
Good-Bye Traditional Dating, Hello Online Dating!
You know that feeling that you get when you’re in high school and you have a crush on someone? You feel all twitter pated and like you’ve got butterflies in your stomach. You go out of your way so that you cross paths with them in the hallways, and when they speak to you… Oh it feels like the angels are signing!
Back in the day, dating was fun. Dating was exciting. Dating was full of promise. Somewhere along the way, the dating seen has lost its appeal and it just feels like one bad experience after another. However, when we are rejected by someone, it still stings. It still makes us second guess ourselves, and it makes us feel like we are unwanted, unlovable, and undesired.
So, when we are done dating the traditional way, many folks will turn to online dating because they are attracted to the idea of being able to meet thousands of single people from all over the world. In an online-dater’s mind, the more choices there are, the better. After all, it seems to make plenty of sense, right? Of course it does!
Online Dating Is A Mainstay, But Are There Too Many Choices?
With online dating, we have choices upon choices. Not only are we presented with countless choices of people to talk to on a dating site, but we have countless dating sites to choose from! We are over-encumbered with choices! Because there are endless possibilities of people you could meet and possibly form a connection with, we have a hard time just choosing one person.
Sometimes online daters will talk to multiple people on multiple sites — for example, maybe you’re interested in hooking up with someone you met on NaughtyDate for a night, but you’re really interested in a few other people on two separate sites. By entertaining multiple people at once, you’re not really giving yourself the chance to form a true connection with anyone. You’re trying to give each person equal attention in the hopes of getting to know them, but that may not be enough and they could just walk away… Then you’re left wondering if that person was the person!
How Does Online Dating Affect Our Mental Health?
So, what if you aren’t interested in talking to multiple people at once. What if you are just holding out for that one person that you really feel drawn to? You scour through the database of potential singles and while there are some interesting people, none of them really call to you (again, there are so many choices, you don’t want to feel like you’re settling, so you either talk to them all or you talk to none and wait for that Holy Grail person). When you do finally find that person that is everything you could want in a partner, you send them a message.
In your message, you play it cool and tell the other person you’d like to get to know them because you think you have a lot in common. Once you hit send, you feel excited and you’re so sure that this other person is going to respond and feel the same way.
When days go by and you don’t get a response from them, you’re a little hurt, but you’re still rational. Maybe they weren’t active on the site anymore and they found someone. You might even think, “Good for them!”
However, when you do get a response and they decline your offer… That’s where the heartbreak and emotional turmoil sets in. You start wondering if you’re good enough. You analyze your message and profile to see if there was something that could raise a red flag for someone. That rejection stays with you and you feel horrible.
After a few weeks of not going on the site, you begin to feel better. You’re going back out with your friends, you’re having fun, and you probably forgot all about your foray into online dating, and you’re over that rejection.
All that changes when you get a random message from someone you don’t know. Then it hits you—your online dating profile was still active. Someone came across your profile and they are interested in getting to know you!
Your stomach does a little dance as you read the message. You click on the person’s profile and you see that they have a few of the qualities that you’re looking for, but not many of the “main” ones. You find them somewhat attractive, but you feel like there is something a bit off about them. However—when you go to respond, you are hesitant, aloof, and you have your reservations. Ultimately, you turn the person down.
Buckle Up for the Emotional Rollercoaster
Online dating can be a roller coaster ride of emotions. That excitement of finding someone you find interesting can come crashing down when you get no response from them, or worse, they reject you. You’ll take some time away from it, until you get a message from someone showing interest. Online dating is an emotional roller coaster, there’s no doubt about that. However, when you do find the one (it has happened to plenty of folk!), it makes it worth every up and every down. You just have to be brave enough to try.