Online dating is the way to meet someone during lockdown. People have much more time on their hands and many are using it to navigate their way around dating apps. Firstly, choose a dating site, then complete an online profile and include some photographs. Talk to your matches and set up some virtual dates. Video calls are particularly popular with some sites offering them as an inbuilt feature. Depending on where you live, and the level of lockdown you are currently in, it may also be possible to go on some socially distant dates.
You may think the global pandemic is bad for your love life, but it could actually be great for dating! There are so many people out there who have more time on their hands to get to grips with online dating, meaning more possible matches for you. Online dating sites have reported an increase in traffic and time spent on their sites. So, social distancing could be the answer to finding the right person for you!
Dating during lockdown provides a great opportunity for those who tend to rush relationships to slow things down and get to know their date better before jumping in with both feet! Although meeting in person during lockdown is not allowed, or perhaps you can have a socially distanced meeting depending on where in the world you live, getting to know someone more slowly has some real benefits. You are much more likely to develop some meaningful connections. There is reduced risk of becoming too serious with someone you do not know well enough. Equally, you are less likely to end things too soon by overlooking your dates’ great qualities.
Which dating app do I pick?
There are more than a thousand dating apps so try to pick one which has a good reputation and a big user base. Make sure you fill in a detailed profile to increase your chances of finding a match and to show that you are serious about meeting somebody. Also, do not forget to put on at least three good photographs which show you in your true light, don’t go catfishing as it will only lead to disappointment!
Regardless of which app you decide to use it is important that you stay active on the site and don’t be afraid to message first.
Complete your online dating Bio
Nothing says ‘I’m not taking this seriously at all’ than a two-sentence online bio. I automatically assume that this person is not really wanting to find someone, or if they are just looking for some ‘no strings attached fun’. If they are wanting to meet someone then I think it is lazy, there is no follow through, and they cannot complete tasks they have started. So, I would not give this person a single second more of my time!
A completed bio indicates a genuine individual and provides good conversation starters as you can also identify areas you have in common. Avoid coming across as flippant or aggressive; lines like “don’t speak to me unless you want a serious and committed relationship” will not do you any favours! Also, do not complain about previous dates – it will make you look like a bitter and not light-hearted and fun! You could also add in a sentence or two about the kind of person you are looking for, so you get better suited matches approaching you.
How to speak to someone online
So, once you have got your bio on point, the next step is to speak to someone whose profile has caught your eye. Use that as your starting point. For example, you could say “hey I have seen from your pics that you like rock climbing, so do I! where was that photo taken? It looks awesome!” This way it’s something specific to the person you are talking to and you are showing a genuine interest in something they are also interested in, so you are demonstrated that you have common ground and could be a match.
You need to avoid a generic message that is too brief or one that is too long. For example, do not write “cute smile” and leave it there. Equally, do not write three paragraphs about why you wanted to say introduce yourself! Messages that are too brief look like no effort has gone into them and it also looks as though you are sending them to everyone! No-one likes the thought that they are not being specially selected out of the pile even if they are not! We also do not want to feel as though we are being stalked; messages that are too long look overpowering and too eager which is never attractive. Find the middle ground and drop a short message with a few sentences relating to their bio. If you can, try to inject some humour and show your fun personality.
Depending on what level of lockdown you are in will depend on what you can do. Some people won’t be able to meet at all and it will all need to be done over technology. In this case, video dates are the way forwards. EHarmony has its own video chat function, so you don’t need to give out your personal telephone number to chat. There is also Zoom, FaceTime and HouseParty apps which can be utilised. Video calls are a great way to get to know someone without actually being together and they are much less pressured from the comfort of your own house.
This is how I had my first two dates with my husband and the pandemic wasn’t here yet! There were absolutely no restrictions, but I wanted to make sure I was going to like him before I met him. I had an awful date the week before, when the guy turned up he looked nothing like his photos and he was extremely angry and I was actually scared of him! So, video dating is much safer, there are no outfit dilemmas and you can sus them out before taking hours with your hair and makeup!
Video calling isn’t the only option, you could always have telephone chats if you don’t want to be on camera. This way you really can be wearing your scruffs and no make-up! There are also voice notes, I send these to my friends all the time, this way they can pick them up whenever they are free.
For some people, the added distance will provide more excitement and suspense and for others it will mean the initial attractions fades quicker. If it fades that fast though I think it would have been inevitable that it always would have, so personally I’d rather know sooner than later as it saves wasting any time.
Everyone dates at their own pace, and anyone you are dating should be respectful of this. Embrace getting to know each other at a distance before getting mind fogged by becoming physically intimate. When you still haven’t kissed or slept together you can think much more objectively about the relationship.
Socially distanced dates
Before the pandemic, our go-to dates were probably going out to the pub for a drink, a meal in a restaurant or the cinema. Now the lockdown restrictions have relaxed we can have dates outdoors which are socially distanced. In many places masks still need to be worn, for example in shops and on public transport. Girls I don’t know about you but there is no way I would want to wear a mask on a date, it would pull my make up off so I would definitely be choosing to do activities that don’t require a mask! I personally would steer clear of the cinema because wearing a mask for too long is also ruining my complexion.
Lockdown date ideas
- Picnic in the park
- Bike ride
- A city walk
- Day at the beach
- Climb a mountain
- Outdoor swimming
- A game of tennis
Socially distanced dating is strange to us and is bound to bring with it some anxieties around the awkwardness of it all. If this is the way you’re feeling, then don’t be afraid to confess to your date because it will relieve some pressure and anxiety. We can create intimacy by lowering our guard, being open and revealing our vulnerabilities. Laughter and eye contact also help us connect without the use of touch.
Lockdown solo time
Don’t pressurise yourself to date if you are not in the right frame of mind. This time could be spent enjoying your own company and perhaps doing some self-reflection. It might be the perfect opportunity to reassess your life, your job, the people you tend to go for and perhaps you might decide to approach things differently in the future. Or maybe you just like to take up some new hobbies like baking and reading. The best thing you can do is be kind to yourself and keep on top of your mental health during lockdown. After all, we need to love our self before anyone else can.
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