Dating apps like Tinder have changed the game. On one hand, you both swipe right and it’s a match. On the other… unsolicited d—k pics.
Sure, it’s convenient. No need to get out of the house to meet people. And no more painfully awkward rejections: just swipe right for yes, swipe left for no, and if you both swipe right, it’s a match made in cyberheaven.
But with the good comes the terrible — unsolicited photos of private parts, catfishing, and the disappointment of divergent dating expectations. (You want commitment; he just wants a good time.)
Tinder horror stories might support the notion that nothing still beats traditional romance. If you’d have to swipe and sift through dozens of disasters to find love, then it isn’t that much better than the old-school method… isn’t it?
So what about Tinder success stories? Out of 50 million users, a billion swipes and 20 million matches a day, how many eventually find their way to a lasting relationship?
Vince, 28, is an engineer from Makati. His girlfriend Em, 24, is a physical therapist from Pampanga. They matched on Tinder in February 2016 and have been dating since.
Archie, 31, is a nurse from Manila currently based in Suffolk, England. Her boyfriend Adam, 28, is a gardener from Cambridge. They’ve been together since December 2015.
Kai, 29, is a fashion designer and nurse based in New York. Her boyfriend Pierre, 37, is a broker from Paris. They matched in December 2015 and quit Tinder by January 2016.
Em: I’d been planning to stay single until I was 27. But one night, I was stressing out, and I was bummed that I couldn’t make it to my mom’s birthday. I decided to download Tinder.
Archie: I just got out of a horrible five-year LDR [long-distance relationship]. My cousin introduced me to Tinder to distract me. At first, I was skeptical because guys can be jerks.
Kai: I was dating a doctor who was really flaky. We work in the same building, but I would only hear from him maybe once a week. I had bad anxiety, so not knowing where we stood was tough.
Em: I told Vince I wouldn’t stay long on the app and gave him my Facebook. I deleted Tinder as soon as I saw his friend request.
Adam: Archie didn’t write anything on her bio, but I had a feeling about her from her pictures. I couldn’t risk not getting matched with her. We were both only in Cambridge that day, by chance, and she wouldn’t have appeared within my distance parameter otherwise.
Kai: I flew to Paris on my first solo travel ever. My friends pushed me to go out and have fun as I was “in the greatest city on Earth.” So I opened a Tinder account. I told myself I’d go home with the first guy I talk to. The first guy was too sarcastic; the second guy (Pierre) was frank and wasted no time, which I liked.
Vince: It was a late Saturday night and I was out with friends in Clark. Em was still up, preparing for a report. She mentioned that she was getting hungry, so I offered to bring her a meal. We ended up talking until dawn.
Archie: Adam was the only guy who sent a message that wasn’t textspeak or “Hi babe!” I felt comfortable chatting as if I’ve known him for a long time. Three weeks in, we met for lunch and ice skating. I offered to pay for food, and apparently I was the only girl he ever dated who did that.
Pierre: We simply met at the Opéra, went to a bar, and lost track of time together. I knew right away [that I wanted to be with her]. When she left for the US, it took me a couple of weeks to realize, no way, I’m not letting her go.
Vince: Em and I compete on who loves whom more on a daily basis. We share the same values in life, and we handle our differences very well.
Adam: Archie and I continued dating for another month, and by that time I knew I loved her. We have three anniversaries: the day we matched on Tinder, the day we first met, and the day we said we love each other.
Pierre: Our relationship is basically about learning to be patient until we finally end up together for good. It’s hard, but it’s part of the experience. We probably learn much more from each other being apart, than some couples who have been living together for years.
Vince: Meeting face-to-face with a stranger is no easy feat for torpe guys like me. And Em and I are both busy with our goals and too lazy to socialize. Without Tinder, there would be no us.
Adam: I don’t think I could’ve found someone like Archie if it wasn’t for Tinder. I have never been the best at approaching strangers, [or keeping] them interested. If I met Archie on a night out, she would’ve moved me swiftly along.
Pierre: [Our story] would have been different. Globalization has shortened the distance between countries and cultures. The Internet allows us to meet people we would have never met otherwise.
Em: Don’t get into online dating with a love story plotted in your mind. I wasn’t invested in Tinder, and I didn’t expect a relationship out of it. It was just a great dating warm-up.
Archie: Respect begets respect. On my end, Adam was the only guy I entertained because the rest just sent, “Hey sexy!”
Kai: I’ve met the love of my life because I was brave enough to go past my comfort zone. If you go beyond the boundaries you created for yourself, you might just end up in a rom-com set in Paris.