The last month of 2019, and thus of the decade, is barreling to a close, and thus it is time to reflect not only the year but the decade in dating.
Romance in the 2010s will go down in history for a myriad of reasons, not least of them the rise of dating apps. Match and eHarmony had already existed for awhile, but in 2012 Tinder came into the the world and ushered in nearly a full decade of “swiping” and all the consequences that came along with it.
The dating landscape in 2019 is much different than it was in 2009 (incidentally, the year Grindr launched — but that is an entirely different story). Many hand-wringing articles blame Tinder and similar apps for the dating apocalypse and for changing the very concept of dating as we know it. This is not necessarily wrong, but in a world where people watch movies and read articles and take photos and check email and live on their phones, what did we expect?
It’s not just the abstract nature of dating that has changed; it’s the minutiae, the details, the small things. The idea that someone’s photo on your phone can turn into a real-life person that you connect to in some way — maybe even marry — has taken hold. But, of course, just as often the photo on your phone turns out to be a person who is a some combination or rude and idiotic or just plain creepy.
Yes, I’m linking to my own article — but I’m getting it over with quickly! What drew me to write about orbiting (the concept of not answering someone’s texts/other modes of desired communication but looking at their Instagram/Snapchat stories) is the fact that it could only occur in the 2010s. “Ghosting,” even though it was first coined on Urban Dictionary in 2009, existed as a concept for eons. You got stood up, you didn’t get a call/carrier pigeon/scroll back, what have you.
But orbiting? It could only exist in a time where Instagram and Snapchat do. Let’s put it to rest, please.
A bit distinct from ghosting, cloaking if when a potential suitor dons an invisibility cloak after setting up a date — meaning, they block you on the app you matched on and whatever communication app (WhatsApp, iMessage, etc.) so you can’t keep in contact. It’s like standing someone up, yet somehow worse.
Submarining is the term for when someone has not made contact with you for awhile, then all of a sudden comes up to the surface with a “What’s up?” text. It’s occurrences like this that make me wish it were the Little Womendays and if you wanted to reach me, you had to write a letter by candlelight.
Enough. No one wants to date a moron. Next.
It’s almost 2020, people. Dating apps are here to stay, and it’s becoming more and more likely that you will meet your partner on one. I understand the hesitation to be vulnerable on dating apps, but if you actually want to meet people you are compatible with, it’s the only way. In 2020 I propose out with the nonsensical, slightly insulting bios that include one bad photo of you from 5 years ago and an Office quote at the bottom, and in with profiles that actually help you shine.