Why I’m Breaking Up With Dating Apps

Delete Dating Apps

Albert Einstein famously said, “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, but expecting different results.” And, for that reason, I’ve decided to take a step back from dating apps. At least for the time being.

You see, I’ve been using Tinder, Bumble, Happn and Hinge on-and-off for the best part of three years. During this time I mastered the art of crafting a successful dating profile, and I became a pro at steering message exchanges towards a first date. And in doing so I met some great (and sometimes not so great) guys. But nothing really stuck.

I found myself repeating the same cycle again and again; like I was acting out a scene in a movie – just with a different leading man every 4-6 weeks. Either I’d meet someone really lovely, who liked me a lot, but I couldn’t muster much enthusiasm for the match. Or I’d meet someone I was really excited about, but somewhere down the line they’d end up ghosting me.

Why I Chose to Delete Dating Apps

Now, I’m mature enough to accept the blame for some of this. And I’m sure a therapist could find lots to discuss within this repeat narrative. But, at the end of 2018 I took some time to reflect on the traps I continuously find myself falling into when dating, and I realised a lot of the fault lies with the platforms I’m using to meet potential romantic partners.

As Keely Geist brilliantly summarised on The Every Girl, last month:

“Online dating is like throwing a fishing net out there and seeing what you catch. Most of the time it’s garbage, a lone struggling fish, and a whole lot of nothing — not a realistic picture of the whole dating pool. When we solely rely on a dating app to meet someone, we are leaving it up to chance that we’ll catch a good one instead of being an active participant in finding our match.”

Dating Offline

What Comes Next?

So, what comes next, you might be wondering… Well, I deleted my profiles on Bumble and Hinge (I stopped using Tinder and Happn long ago). And instead I’m going to work on being “an active participant” in finding a match.

Meeting someone IRL now seems so much more appealing. And I’m following the advice of dating coach Clara Artschwager by focusing on meeting people in person.

Clara recently shared her 4-step approach to meeting people in real life on The Stripe. “Despite all the claims of impossibility, I was determined to meet people in person. And not in a way that required going to bars (that would disturb my 9:30 pm bedtime) or being “on” all the time,” Clara confessed. “I was determined to weave the effort to meet my future partner or simply someone great to date into my everyday.”

Spoiler alert: Clara is now in a relationship with a man she met in a yoga class.

So for the next few months I plan to experiment with Clara’s approach to dating. Maybe I’ll use dating apps again in the future, but for now I’m enjoying taking a break. And, naturally, I’ll be keeping my eyes peeled for any hotties who happen to walk into my yoga studio…


Style Notes: Knit by Joules (past season) | Jeans by ASOS | Belt by John Lewis (past season – similar here) | Bag, just seen, by Jigsaw (gift) | Signet ring by Astley Clarke (gift) | Long pendant necklace by Monica Vinader


Have Your Say: Did you meet your partner online or in real life? And if you’re single how are you finding the whole swipe-app situation right now? Leave your thoughts in the comments section below, and let me know if you plan to delete dating apps this year too.

P.S. The best things about being single and 3 first date outfit ideas judged by a man I used to date

Photos by Kylie Eyra

HAVE YOUR SAY

  1. Noemi says:

    I’m single and it’s so distressing that most of people only rely on dating apps to meet people. I read an article on Who What Wear (I think), where a girl told how surprising it was that a guy asked her out. IRL, after meeting her in a store.
    I know many women got engaged after dating via Tinder, but after going out with lots of guys, like 40/50! I find it insane and I totally agree with what Clara Artschwager told about throwing a fishing net out there.
    Things were much easier before dating apps, in my opinion.
    I also read how dangerous they can be because they stole your personal data and sometimes they shared it on other platforms/socials. Creepy.

    • Ella Gregory says:

      YES! The sharing of information by the apps is SUPER creepy. I remember years ago when I was still using Tinder all of my “suggested friends” on Facebook where men that I’d matched with. It was so unnerving, because if I could see them on Facebook they could probably see me too, and I didn’t necessarily want some of them to know my full name etc.

  2. Grace Atwood says:

    I love this (and that you are taking Clara’s advice – she is so amazing!) Thanks for linking to her posts on The Stripe.

  3. Karly says:

    Great post! I remember having a love hate relationship with Tinder and would obsessively use it one week and then delete it completely the next! I finally gave up and decided to concentrate on just being happy and the next day I met my partner (at Glastonbury of all places!) x

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