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This Is Why Generation Y Fucking Hates Online Dating

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I am Generation Y. Do not millennial me unless youd like a kick in the teeth. I get that were ambiguous. Too young to be Gen X, too old to be Millennials.One article found on can even be quoted as saying, Generation Y is a fake, made-up thing. Do not worry about it.

I am generation Y. I was born in the very early 80s and if you need a unifying identifier that gathers us in unbreakable, non-millennial stature, here it is: We remember being teenagers without the internet, and we remember being teenagers, with it. Were it, the cusp. The crest of the wave. The forgotten, early 80s-born, un-entitled children of technologys greatest crossover.

We remember when MTVs had purpose, when it respected itself. To us, is more movie than SNL sketch. We recorded Pearl Jam onto cassette tapes when they came on the radio. We listened to the radio.

But we were not single in the 90s.

We were just kids. Most of our sexually formative years involved in-person activity, but dont think we werent on the front lines of the first chatrooms in existence dabbling in what you now call sexting, apparently an entirely normal part of the current dating process even though you conveniently leave it out when you tell stories about the new guy youre seeing to your companions at brunch.

There was no Tinder in the 90s. No smartphones, no face swiping apps allowing us to thumb through pictures of human beings like shirts on a clothing rack at Marshalls. If you were old enough to be dating in the 90s, there were phone calls and answering machine messages and blind dates and a sense that if you met someone, you should ask them out, rather than settling into some sense of creepy comfort that you could stalk them on Instagram later.

Thats what we were watching. Those were the items written into television and movies being played out by older siblings and cousins. We figured wed just meet someone the way they met people, because why in the hell would that ever change? It hadnt changed before. At least not since the heyday of the matchmaking yenta.

I pity my generation. We learned about life in one way, and then had to go and live it in another.

Todays teens, those just tiptoeing into the shallow end of attraction and romance, they know what a dating app is. They know that thats how you meet someone to date. It will have never felt weird to them. Quite the opposite, thats what will feel normal to them. A phone call from an admirer would make them soil their underwear from Target. I still remember getting looks of horror the first time I told someone I was trying online dating. They just assumed theyd read about me dead in a newspaper within the month.

It was gross back then. It was weird. It was desperate. Why cant you just meet someone the normal way? Now, when someone finds out Im single its always why dont you try online dating? And isnt that just the tits?

I am a living, breathing tipping point that was both shamed for online dating and encouraged to do it, all within the timespan of my singledom. Is this a joke?

Shani, why do you save all this stuff?

This is why.

I was forbidden to call boys. When I lived under my mothers roof, I could not call a person with a penis. If one called me, fine. But I was not allowed. Boys were for older girls. They were not for me. They were a distraction. When of course they were all I thought about. Dating was always the thing you did after youve got your career. And this wasnt a mild suggestion, it was a command. My mother was raised that girls get married, and she was determined not to raise her daughter the same way. I was raised knowing that girls get jobs. Naturally, a man youd want to date doesnt magically appear once youve got your career, he isnt issued to you like a Christmas bonus, theres no more likelihood youll find him then than you would have at 16, but Mom meant well.

The way I learned about boys was in what I would call the normal way. They way it has existed for all time until now. As children, teasing. As teens, awkward flirting usually preceded by friendship. In college, alcohol-fueled sex that gave us some illusion we knew what we were doing. All the ways I interacted with the opposite sex were in person. They were real. And then when I got my career, when it was time to go out and really use the wealth of knowledge Id built up, the game changed entirely.

People stopped meeting in person. Suddenly we were all too busy to meet someone during the natural course of life that literally every couple since the dawn of time had used to meet their partners before us. Not us, no. Were too busy. Were special.

The internet is nothing if not a business opportunity, and someone decided to monetize love.

I signed up for my first online dating app in law school, in 2005. Ive always been an early adopter of technology (late bloomer in literally every other way), but in reality online dating had existed for 10years by then. Match.com was created in 1995. Sounds strange, doesnt it? To think of online dating in the 90s. Thats how long it took for people to be okay with it. To not be horrified by it, for it to become the norm. I was still weird for setting up an online dating profile 10years after the invention of online dating, but I was horribly late to the party when I waited two weeks to download Pokemon Go. That tells me a lot, the slowness of humanity to warm to online dating. It speaks to the unnatural nature of it. To its oddity.

Why would people do this? Why indeed.

But boys didnt like me. They never really did. I spent the whole of the 90s watching girls in high school have boyfriends they dated for two weeks and then broke up with in some very intense way. But it never happened to me, I wasnt a girl boys paid attention to, and it never bothered me because I was scared shitless of them anyway. This has been the general rule my entire life, the un-appeal of me. I just took this as truth, until law school, when I suddenly realized I was kind of a grown up, and this shit wasnt going to fly anymore.

I didnt know anyone else who was dating online. It felt icky. It felt like there was something wrong with me because I had to resort to online dating. This was still the general opinion of online dating at the time. No one in law school was truly interested in me (of course they werent), and I was watching other people connect with their future spouses left and right. And that isnt an estimation. These people are married with kids now. Theyre very happy, I know. I have Facebook.

Overall, I have spent a total of nine years online dating. Nine years trying every app, website, and method imaginable. I have never once, not once had a relationship result from this practice. Countless first dates. Fewer than 50 second dates, maybe a handful third dates, and plenty of one night stands as consolation prizes. But not one boyfriend. That is the fucking truth.

Poor suckers.

Odds alone, I should have had a boyfriend this way. Ive been out in the ether for so many years how is it not possible that one man who wants me around for longer than a Tic Tac has found and pursued me? Ive pursued plenty by the way, to absolutely no avail.

I do not suffer from self pity or doubt, I know Im a love-worthy person. I am not terrible looking, Im smart, moderately funny, and I know Im kind. I try very hard at that. I can imagine that eventually someone might like to spend some time with me, I can see that as a realistic outcome. Conversely, my ego is not inflated. I know I have a lot to work on. Confidence-wise I hover somewhere in the middle to keep myself at a good pH balance.

So why then, no boyfriend? The confusion you might be feeling, the confusion I now have as a building block of my psyche, has been this cloud of mystery hanging over my late twenties and early thirties that exists, almost like a living, breathing thing in my day to day life, that no one can explain. That everyone thinks requires explanation, because Im alone. Because nobody likes fruitless effort without some kind of cause or lesson learned. Were programmed to get something for our money.

How is this not working? What does working even mean? I think it means meeting at least one person via online dating in nine years who wants to hold your hand. But I havent. Im not entirely sure Ive met that many hands I want to hold, either. But by now, by this time, shouldnt I have had a little success, even by accident at this point? Why is this so hard for me?

You know the answer, just as I do.

Im not good at this. This isnt for me. This isnt how Im going to meet someone. Its not the way.

And why is that surprising? The world groomed me, my entire youth, to meet a man as humans do. In life. Among friends. Comfortably. Genuinely. I learned that people enter circles of other peoples lives naturally, perhaps with Fates help, with the tides of life bring people together. Its all I ever knew, because it was literally all that had ever happened before.

And then I started dating, and dating changed.

Everything changed. But everything I wanted stayed the same. I wanted to develop a friendship with someone before I dated them. I wanted to marry a best friend. I wanted to look back at how we met with fondness.

I like meeting people in person, but not just in person, over time. I like repeated exposure. I think its what allows attraction between two people to steep. Of all the lessons online dating has taught me, the most unignorable truth is that I dont make a very good impression in two hours. I think you have to spend more time with me. You need to see how I am, see how I interact with people other than you. And youre never going to get that if we meet for coffee or drinks or some other safe first meeting activity.

And thats another thing. Theyre not dates. First dates, if they result from online dating, are not dates. Im a linguistics fan so lets please call them what they are. Theyre Theyre two strangers saying hello for the first time. There is no romance there, there are no butterflies. Hes a total stranger Ive texted with for 15minutes. We do not know each other, and yet the premise of online dating is that in that first meeting were supposed to develop enough attraction to each other to want to see each other again. To want to make the effort to see each other again.

It wont happen naturally, were not in friend circles where wed see each other at a BBQ by accident a week later, as a pleasant surprise. No, we have to meet, spend a brief time conversing, and in that time develop enough interest on both sides of the table the one of us is going to make effort to ask the other out again, and that person is going to say yes.

Am I the only person who thinks online dating is illogically setting us up to fail? I mean am I?

Whats going to happen is that its going to fizzle out. Neither will put forth any effort toward a second meeting. Yeah, he/she was nice I guess, but they didnt wow me, you know? Were all waiting to be wowed. Wowed! No pressure or anything, youve got two hours and two glasses of Sauvignon Blanc: Go!

What we ignore is that wow is an accumulation of moments over time. They dont all hit at once. The internet has made everything instant, even our assumptions of how quickly we should be attracted to people. Wed take a slow-cooked boeuf bourguignon at a French restaurant over a microwaved burrito any day but the person were going to spend the rest of our lives with better convince us of their worth, instantly.

Can you imagine the strength of the lightning strike youd need to meet a stranger for the very first time and actually begin to develop real feelings for them? Online dating is a giant pool of people, there are literally millions of individuals involved. Millions! Do we really think that matching with one of them carries any real potential for attraction? What does matching even mean? He looked good in his groomsman suit and I wore a very low cut dress in two of my pictures. There. You matched. Good luck you two, off you go.

And yes, we all know someone, or several someones, who met their spouses via online dating. Mazel tov to them and their families. But assuming that is the rule, rather than the exception, is ignorant. Yes, every now and then a couple will meet, fall in love, and marry as a result of online dating. But youre not looking at the success rate. Millions of online daters and you know two couples. Two couples who got married that way. I know three. Your neighbors old roommate. A former colleague. Your cousins best friend. Good. Good for them. What about the millions of the rest of us?

The only real boyfriends Ive ever had, and there arent many, Ive met in person. Not only have I met them in person, but I havent lifted a finger. “He saw her from across the room that old chestnut, has proven true for me, every time. If a man is interested in me, he will make it clear, and if I am interested back, there will be a wonderful connection, a new person in my life. But these people are rare, few and light years between and I have to be patient. You could write date me in the dust of my patience right now.

I dont think this works, online dating. Not for my generation. Not the generation that learned how to date in one way, and actually had to date in another.

Its the cruelest bait and switch. And were the only generation it has happened to. We are Generation Y, the generation the world jilted.

Todays teens will find it odd to meet their spouse at a birthday party at a friends apartment. The question wont be how did you meet, but instead, which app did you use? And I dont scoff at that, I dont see anything wrong with that. Its what theyve got. Its what theyre learning. Its what theyll use. I dont really foresee the internet ceasing to exist when the graduating class of 2026 begins to couple.

They might actually find it more comfortable to stalk someones Instagram from across the room at a party or event before they speak to them face-to-face. Because were comfortable doing what weve always done, what weve learned. We wouldnt dare take away the phones of Generation Z just as they start to date, the poor things would be terrified. Yet there was no problem at all tossing Generation Y into the deep end of app dating without swimming lessons.

Ive been robbed. Ive been robbed of the dating future I was groomed to have. I thought dating was just that, dating. I thought thats what people did, what I would do. I looked to the future and and journeyed in that general direction and then arrived someplace completely different. A Willy Wonka rowboat ride. And Im angry. I didnt learn this, I didnt prepare for it, Im learning as I go. And a 19-year-old learning these things and making her mistakes has a lot more time to make mistakes than someone who is 34.

On behalf of my generations single women, on this page, and on many others, allow me to say what were all thinking, what were all sick of participating in, failing at, slogging through. Allow me to clarify for anyone who doesnt understand why some people dont have success at online dating, as if thats even something numbers and logic suggest we should have. Let me tell you why the people of the forgotten Generation Y arent natural, easy, thrilled participants in online dating.

This isnt how we we were raised. This isnt right for us.

This is bullshit.

Read more: http://thoughtcatalog.com/shani-silver/2016/10/why-online-dating-for-generation-y-is-complete-bullshit/