Sure, we might dream of being swept off our feet one day by Mr. Right, but how willing are we to actually go out there and get him ourselves? Women are more comfortable making the first move in the dating scene these days — as well we should be — but it seems fair to say that most of us would still prefer for guys to make the first move. Unfortunately, that mentality might be sabotaging our chances of finding love.
According to data published earlier this month by OG hipster dating site OKCupid, the majority of those boring conversation starters and (occasionally not-so-) subtle flirty messages are sent by men — in fact, straight women are 3.5x less likely to reach out first. Why is that? Is it because we know guys will reach out first, whether with genuine messages or sexual innuendos, or are we just clinging to an outdated tradition? We may never know, but what we do know is that women who do take the bull by the horn and message guys they like are way more successful in actually finding a match.
OKCupid’s study surveyed over 70,000 users who logged in at least three times a week — a pretty substantial test group, and one that’s given them some pretty eye-opening results. For one thing, women who reached out first were 2.5x more likely to get a response than men who do it. And while only 12 percent of first messages sent by guys turn into a first date, women fare way better, with 30 percent of their efforts rewarded with an actual, IRL meet-up. Pretty impressive, right?
You’d think with those odds, women would be more likely to make the first move, but that’s not the case at all. Men still send 3.5x as many first messages than women do, despite the fact that it pays off way less than it does for women. So what are we waiting for, exactly? If getting out there and being more in charge of our own love lives pays off on OKCupid, it’s likely the same can be said for Tinder, Bumble, or whatever other site/app you’re using. It’s worth a try, anyway, right?