For those who are single and searching, the global pandemic dealt a huge blow to our chances of finding potential partners by socializing in-person. However, it turns out COVID-19 isn’t enough to completely shut down the desires of the heart, it just changed the way we played the game.
People are choosing potential dates based on qualities that actually matter.
With the threat of death looming over us, most people aren’t focusing on superficial qualities like “hotness,” “flashy cars,” or “they smiled back at me so they must be nice.” We’re being more intentional about finding mates who are kind, smart, and have great personalities. There’s no alcohol or restaurant ambiance to fool us into thinking we like someone when we don’t.
We’re being clearer about what we’re looking for.
Since everyone has been worried about dying, losing their jobs, or people close to them, we’ve had less time to play silly dating games. The pandemic has taken months of my life and I’m not about to waste anymore entertaining someone who isn’t right for me. I’m more direct about what I want from a relationship and I won’t hesitate to stop interacting with a potential partner if they don’t meet those standards.
There’s a greater emphasis on safety.
Before COVID, I use to be a “jump their bones first and save the questions for later” kind of person, but the pandemic has made me more worried and conscious about my health and safety than ever. I’ve only gone out on three socially distanced dates since the outbreak began and we went over a lot of checklists and ground rules before they happened. If my date and I can’t see eye to eye about basic precautions, how are we going to navigate the bigger issues down the road?
We’re having deeper conversations.
Thanks to lockdowns, self-quarantines, and remote work, many of us have a bit more time on our hands. We have more time to sit and talk, but small talk has taken the backseat. We’re more likely to discuss bigger issues like our fears, hopes, aspirations for the future. We want to talk about how the events going on in the world have affected us. In the process of sharing these discussions, we’re building intimacy and stronger commitments.
Slow love is taking over.
Gone are the days when we swiped through hundreds of faces in a day and hooked up with the first person that replied decently bare minutes after meeting them. We’re not going on dates just to keep our dating lives busy. Sex is off the table so we’re being forced to spend time getting to know potential partners. We’re taking things slow, trying to enjoy each other’s company, and just waiting to see where things lead.
We’re getting to really know the people we’re involved with.
Rather than starting and burning out quickly, you can let the relationship simmer slowly. Instead of dismissing people based on their music taste or dress sense, we can learn about things that make them who they are. Since studies show that couples who take the time to get to know each other before having sex enjoy happier relationships later on, this is a welcome change.
Virtual dates are the new norm.
Since we couldn’t gather for a long time, virtual dates replaced physical dates. Being stuck at home shouldn’t prevent you from bonding with your partners. You can watch movies on Netflix together and chat about it just like you would in a cinema. You can video call, play online games, paint and sip, make pottery, take fitness classes, prepare meals together and eat them in your respective houses over Zoom.
We’re being more honest with our dates.
With bigger issues to care about and the struggles we have to go through to navigate life in our current reality, more people are realizing that being coy or dishonest serves no one. If you don’t want to be monogamous, just say so. If having kids or getting married is important to you, come out and say it. Either they respect your needs and want the same things or they don’t.
People are getting more creative with romance.
If you can’t go out and do all the usual things you do to get someone’s attention and make them feel loved, you have to improvise. You can go order takeout and eat it out in your respective cars. Meet for walks, hikes, or bike rides instead of going to a bar or restaurant. Write love notes.
We’re more interested in forming meaningful connections.
Instead of jumping around from date to date, you can focus on building a deeper connection with one or two potential partners. So by the time you’re ready to meet and get physical, you’ll have more to rely on than just physical attraction and passion.
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