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Even those who don’t use dating apps report feeling like the seemingly endless stream of potential partners on their Instagram feeds makes committing to a relationship much more daunting.Instead of building longer-term connections with romantic partners, Gen Zers build hundreds of surface-level connections with their numerous followers, creating relationships that are empirically less fulfilling than the more serious relationships undertaken by older generations.When asked whether she thought going on bad dates was a waste of time, she responded, “I have made a lot of mistakes falling in love, and regretted most of them, but never the potatoes that went with them.” With only confidence, human connection, and new perspectives to gain from going on dates, it’s time for Gen Zers to delete Bumble and start connecting with their peers face-to-face, even if not every dinner results in an undeniable love connection.Per Nora’s adage, if your dinner date with the intern in the neighboring cubicle is truly unsalvageable, the roasted potatoes you’ll consume during dinner and the confidence you’ll gain along the way will serve as unparalleled consolation prizes.
The first lesson: We should be open to meeting people even if they don’t check all our boxes.
Surprisingly, the students gave glowing reviews of the dating assignment, writing that while they were initially afraid, they learned a lot about themselves, gained social confidence, and felt less depressed, sluggish, and isolated.
What’s more, Cronin’s students learned powerful lessons in self-actualization, one commenting that “going on a date helps us get over our fear of failure,” and another reporting that “it makes us feel more vulnerable and that vulnerability helps us learn more about ourselves.” The meaning these students found from engaging in old-fashioned dating is significant.
Instead of going on dates, romantic interaction among Gen Zers takes the form of instantaneous online communication: swiping through Tinder, exchanging Snapchats, and sending direct messages on Instagram.
In fact, the average American adult swipes through dating apps for an average of 77 minutes each day. Dating apps give the impression of an infinite supply of potential partners, making it difficult for Gen Zers to remain content with a single romantic prospect.
What’s more, many of these people are looking for love online: e Harmony projects that 40% of Americans use online dating, with men making up 52.4% of online dating users.