Smart Flirting: Is Your Next Date Just an App Away?
Forget online dating, the future of dating is right on most people’s smartphones. Who has time to hunker over a PC after a long day of work or, worse, get caught browsing Plenty of Fish at the office? As more people depend on their phones for everyday needs like email, document sharing and surfing, dating has also moved to smartphones. But at what cost?
There are a number of apps available to help people hook up, look for relationships or simply pass the time with flirting. It makes sense–people want to feel desired and adored. However, people are also short on time so it’s best to get in that self-esteem boost as quickly as possible. How have dating apps changed the world of dating in general?
Remember to Stay Safe
Even with reputable sites and apps like Match and a growing cadre of new apps, there’s no telling a person’s real reason for being on the site. They might be looking for an affair, looking to hook up with as many people as possible, or even have more sinister intentions in mind. It’s impossible to actually vet out people on any site–and there are only so much safety measures from the site’s end can take.
There are surely a lot of people on there who simply want to pass the time and flirt a little to boot. There’s no guarantee that one site has more marriage-minded people than the other. If a person is simply looking for a distraction, that’s great news. If they want something more, it might be a big waste of time.
The Next Best Thing
Back in the day, people took dates seriously and it was a big deal–as it should be. However, with nearly endless options right on smartphones, it’s more tempting for people to keep looking for the next best thing. Some people want to fulfill that dream list of what they want in a mate, but that’s unrealistic. When filtering by height, income, race, religion and everything else is so easy, that makes people have absurd expectations.
A safer bet is to consider why a person is using a dating app. What’s the ultimate end goal? If marriage or a serious relationship is wanted, keep that in mind when chatting with new people. Is this person really long-term material, or are they a distraction? It’s easy to confuse the two.
Always remember that when it comes down to it, every person on these sites is a stranger. Don’t share personal information like last names, addresses or places of work. Always meet in a public place, and share the date’s name and number with a friend just in case. Ideally, check in with that friend after the date to bring the safety loop full circle.
And be sure to work with well-known apps, dating services like Swoon for Android users or Tinder for those with an iOS phone allow you to take things slowly and let you keep an eye on people who get creepy. It is also anonymous, which allows you to skip through people you don’t think will work without them knowing and potentially getting upset.
Dating can be dangerous–and apps make work for predators a little easier. Tread carefully, have fun, and always keep safety in mind.