Like many singletons, I have spent a disproportionate amount of time during the pandemic on Tinder. I’m not going to pretend I’m proud of that fact, but it’s my reality. I’m not unsatisfied with my dating life, I was simply bored. Day in, day out of only getting up off the sofa to walk the dog or a quasi-clandestine trip to Tesco Express got old after the first week. At the time, I was a supply teacher’s assistant, so I was immediately furloughed and my teeny tiny social life disappeared overnight.
So I loaded up Tinder. As did so many others; Mid-March 2020 saw usage in Spain and Italy (then in Covid crisis) increasing by up to 25%. After all, what better way to combat boredom than to talk to someone in the same boat?
At first, messages seemed to flood in. I matched with far more people than I did pre-pandemic, and surprisingly kept talking for days at a time. It really felt like I was making connections better over a dating app than in real life.
But all good things come to an end, right? UK lockdown dragged on, and suddenly this routine of opening Tinder every day got stale. Most of my matches, discouraged by the fact that due to my medium-to-high risk status, did not want to wait any longer to meet outside of an instant messenger bubble and moved on. New matches never replied, and the ones that did ghosted me. Tinder just wasn’t enough any more.
I don’t blame them though. Why would I? 2020 was an utterly horrendous year, traumatic and harrowing for the vast majority. Tinder wasn’t real life. It was an escape; somewhere to forget that COVID-19 ever existed, and to lose yourself in banalities and that ubiquitous fire logo. Things that wear thin after a while.
But am I still using Tinder? Absolutely.