Guess What...Millennials Don't Really Like Dating Apps; It's Just All We Have

Let me repeat that for anyone who may have missed the headline…millennials do not like dating apps; it’s just, genuinely, all we have when it comes to the world of online dating. Also, this bares repeating, millennials are NOT 21 years old; the youngest millennial is 24 at this point and the oldest is 36. Millennials are now adults and what do adults begin to do when they start their journey of “adulting”? They look for a mate. And how do we look for a mate in the year of our Lord, 2018? We either go out, happen to see a random person and take a chance, hop in someone’s DMs on our favorite social media site, or…a dating app.

Here’s the thing though…I don’t know one person in my age group who truly LOVES dating apps. Not. One. However, they’re used every day by millennials all over the world. “If we don’t like them, why do we continue to use them, Christen?” That’s a great question invisible person who didn’t really ask this question! We continue to use them because they continue to be more convenient than leaving your house, getting dressed up, and going to a loud space to try and spark up a random connection. On top of that, millennials are too busy trying to keep their head above water when it comes to everything else outside of relationships.

We now refuse to work for the same employer for 20 years, so we’re starting our own ideas/companies/etc., while still holding down menial work to pay basic bills and keep whatever dreams we have alive. While we’re attempting to keep our heads above water, the idea of making time to get dressed up and MAYBE meet a great match at a bar or lounge is just…tiresome. Also, the thought of using E-Harmony, BlackPeopleMeet, or FarmersOnly, the way the generation before us did, isn’t appealing.

So what happened?

Basically, some white guy noticed all of this and created what we now call “dating apps”. The idea makes sense, but even WE know the chance of building a genuine connection with someone based off of a picture and two sentences is slim-to-none. With that being said, we then began to associate dating apps with finding someone who you want to “hook up” with.

Don’t get me wrong though, people have started committed relationships from dating apps like Tinder, Bumble, and PlentyOfFish but, for the most part, they don’t usually last. It’s really just luck of the draw at this point on how to meet someone. We’ve seen people get married from meeting each other on Twitter and we’ve also read horror stories about people who met on Twitter. Again…it’s all the luck of the draw. Now how do we counter this harsh reality? We do what people have been doing since the beginning of time…go up to a complete stranger and hope for the best.

I mean…in the dating app world, every now and then you’ll find a diamond amongst the cubic zirconia, but you have to be willing to sift through a lot of fake to find the real. In thinking about it, isn’t that dating, period? We date the wrong people all of the time until we find the one that’s “right”, so what’s different about dating apps then? The difference is dating apps make you focus on looks, when we as adults understand that looks are great, but substance is even better and when you meet someone in person, you aim to find the substance. Even when adults were using traditional online dating in the 2000s, the dating portals never took away substance. Hell, you had to do a three page dating profile before you were even allowed to look at who else was available in your area.

Now when you meet someone off of a dating app…you’re just trying to make sure this person is who they said they were in the picture. To be even more honest, of all of the married millennial couples I know…none of them met on a dating app. They either met in college, at work, or when they were out on the town having some fun. Maybe if the stigma of dating apps change we’d take them more seriously, but for now we mostly use them to find someone who can help you scratch an itch (whatever that “itch” may be for you).

At the same time, who knows? E-Harmony and other dating sites could completely revamp their model to attract the millennial generation and all of our online dating troubles would be solved. (Wishful thinking, of course.) All I know is until the online dating realm tunes into what millennials really want, we’ll continue to use them as back scratchers while we hope and pray that we’ll randomly run into the Michael B. Jordan of our dreams at our favorite bar.

I mean…a girl can dream, can’t she?

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