Am I The Only Woman Who Doesn’t Hate Modern Dating?

Everyone complains about how much dating sucks, and while I totally get it, I also kinda don’t. I think this is one of the best times to be a single woman in the dating scene and I’m having a blast.

  1. Finding a guy can happen literally whenever I want. Laying in bed? Waiting in line at the DMV? Taking a quick coffee break at work? Swipe it, baby. I can test the man waters whenever and wherever I want thanks to online dating. Sometimes I want to get dressed up and go out and find someone the old-fashioned way, but sometimes I’m feeling flirty after a long horrible day that has left my body unable to leave my couch. These days, I can do it both ways.
  2. Meeting people IRL hasn’t gone anywhere. Technology makes it possible for us to be in a thousand places at once. This virtual interconnectivity is an awesome testament of modern life, which some argue comes at the sacrifice of organic conversation. People seem to think that because we can talk on our phones that we only talk on our phones, as though an exciting conversation with someone new isn’t right outside their doorstep.
  3. There’s finally a place for the introverts. “No one just goes out and meets people anymore!” What this complaint fails to take into account is the socially awkward, who are just as deserving of love and flirtations as the rest of us. There are people with social anxiety so extreme that the idea of making a phone call gives them hives. Now they can download an app and ease into socializing at their own pace. Extroverts will forever go out and meet people regardless of technology. Modern dating is more welcoming than ever before.
  4. The stakes have never been lower. While the state of modern womanhood has extreme lengths to go before it reaches total equality, we find ourselves, seemingly for the first time, encouraged to seek out interests and hobbies outside of romance. If I go on a date that ends poorly or lacks any spark, I don’t have to worry because I have cultivated a rich life outside of the dating world that will always have room for exploration. Modern womanhood no longer revolves around the men in our lives, so the romantic stakes are thankfully low.
  5. There’s little to no pressure. Because almost everything is online, it isn’t taken as seriously. Some women view this as a downside but I love it. So many people in this generation don’t view marriage as the be-all-end-all of life, and that means I can relax knowing that this doesn’t necessarily have to go well. It’s perfectly acceptable to tell someone that you enjoy their company but you don’t want anything too serious. There’s no pressure; the hard stuff can wait.
  6. In some ways, it’s safer. Before going out on my last Tinder date, I took a screenshot of the guy’s profile pic and sent it to a handful of friends. I told them where he worked, linked them to his FB profile, sent the website of the bar we were meeting at. Should something happen, the police would have a damn good start as to what and who they’re looking for. Before everyone compulsively vomited their entire lives online, women had to rely on an observant passerby to hopefully give a detailed enough account to save them from a stranger’s DIY sex dungeon.
  7. It’s easier to weed out the losers. Women are expected to be polite and docile in the face of discomfort, but the incoming generations are discovering that this expectation is BS and aren’t putting up with it. This unapologetically independent mindset is making it easier for all women to tell a creepy guy to eff off. If a guy introduces himself to me with an eggplant emoji, I can unleash a vicious and cathartic rant against him detailing all the ways in which he is a dirtbag… or just unmatch.
  8. Low expectations can yield big results. Romantic movies always push the idea of finding love in the least expected places. Once I started keeping my expectations low and my standards high, I was able to find my Tinderella. Swiping past the disgusting messages and blowing off the bar creeps might get annoying, sure, but that guy who introduced himself with an eggplant emoji is going to find some girl who only wants an eggplant. Finding a guy who understands this, and expects as little as you do, can result in something bigger.
  9. Modern life is busy. If my life gets suddenly busy and I forget to respond to some messages on dating apps, or I need to delete an app or two to free up phone storage space, no one gets butthurt—and if they do, a quick unmatch and we can all move on. Modern dating is the most realistic dating has ever been: sometimes you have to prioritize work or family or self-care over some guy you met in line at the coffee shop, and he’ll do the same to you. What about this is so hard for us to understand?
  10. Dating in the past was garbage. What is this imagined history of dating that everyone keeps alluding to? Do we think that there were fewer creeps or struggles or awkward situations to deal with ten years ago? I think anyone who says that “modern dating” is terrible doesn’t understand the one key fact of life: dating is, and always will be, an awkward, uncomfortable, exhausting mess. No woman in history has ever had an easy time dating. We just have to adjust. It just so happens that this current state of shittiness agrees with me more than any before.
Johanna is a proud longtime resident of the Finger Lakes in Western New York and a gaudy jewelry enthusiast. This ambitious early-thirty-something can often be found declining event invites on Facebook and looking at pictures of her niece while she drinks wine on her couch, accompanied by her beloved dog, Dorothy Barker.