Austin Matchmaker

friend zone

When Did Dating Become Data?

Dating became data with the onset of social media. As I work with my clients building successful relationships iI am struck by the changes they are encountering in a dating world.

No one even makes eye contact anymore much less strike up a conversation with an attractive stranger. Is it fear?  Is it just being too self absorbed?

Some of those changes offer a funny, if sometimes sad, commentary on the relationship and dating world we live in today.

1. First dates are boring now because you already know everything about them from their Facebook profile or the Google search you did on them before you went out.  No surprises, no mystery. This is one way dating became data.

2. People think you’re weird if you call now, since everyone else emails, texts or tweets.  It’s like “only call if it’s some kind of emergency.”  Deciphering some people’s abbreviated  texts is worse than trying to understand why the world is flat and not round.

3.  When dating became data, there is now a sense that you should constantly monitor your phone in case someone sends you a text.  When you don’t get a text returned right away, you might as well be at the dentist getting a root canal, it’s that painful.

4. Online dating is like an MLS for people’s romantic lives, and there are a lot of similarities to the one for houses. And now you can even hire people to write your profile for you.  It was only a matter of time before this MLS attracted realtors.

5. Dating is the only time where you are both the buyer and the seller.

Therefore you think you are perfect and want to get the most bang for your buck.

6. Making your relationship official by changing your status on Facebook is the kiss of death.  If you have any sort of jealous streak, count on it rearing its ugly head as soon as you see a photo of him at happy hour with those co-workers he’s just “friends” with.

7. When you are not interested in someone you can just block their call, or send the short “nice knowing you” text or email.  No need for that awkward breakup conversation. You don’t even have to answer those hard questions like “why?” or “what happened?”.

8. When dating became data,  the new way to end things is to make it easy for them,  All you have to do is let him/her go through your phone, or post a too-cozy picture on your Facebook page.

They are sure to find something suspicious that makes them mad enough to send you that break up text.

9. Last but not least, all this technology leaves us feeling like the dating world is something like a massive eBay auction.  While the person we are with is pretty good, certainly we can do better because we have so many options.

I bet, if we dig through enough profiles, we can find the bigger, better thing.

Well, the reality of all of this technological innovation is that, while communication styles may have changed, dating and relationships are still built and nurtured the same old-fashioned way.

Frankly, while my client’s weddings are getting more and more connected to social media, nobody texts “I do.”

Some things only work when you actually talk to one another.

Human beings are at our core extremely social animals, and we crave the physical and emotional interaction that we can only get while in the presence of other humans.

We need more than just their electronic words, and need to engage all of our senses. Spending time liking friending, linking, tweeting, and messaging may feel like you are connecting to others.

However  it may actually make your life even more isolated. An “LYL” text just can’t compare to someone who looks in your eyes, touches your hand and says, “I love you”.

So get off the computer and get out there in the real world . Trust me.  There is a huge universe of people just like you who are looking for the same thing.  #offlineworks.