Why Dating Apps Are Bad For Your Love Life

My thoughts about Tinder have been documented.

Tinder – and other dating apps – are exactly what society craves:

Something free, quick, easy, effortless, and frictionless

Something that caters to our shallow impulses, short attention spans, and desire for variety.

Something that would take our need for love, sex, attention, affection and validation and turn it into a dopamine heightening video game that we can play anytime, anywhere, with little to no thought beyond whether someone is hot or not.

As a user, you may prefer Tinder to Match, and if you do, I don’t judge you nor blame you. If anything, I understand you and empathize with you.

Ready for Lasting Love?
Ready for Lasting Love?

You want to meet more people. You don’t want to read through long profiles. You don’t want to write long emails. You don’t want to invest time in getting to know someone, who, quite likely, will not be a great long-term partner. You want to swipe right, text, meet quickly, and see ASAP if there’s compatibility.

I get it.

But what are the downsides of this process?

You don’t need me to tell you.

For all the positives we associate with dating apps, there are equal negatives.

For all the positives we associate with dating apps, there are equal negatives.

If you’re swiping right on dozens of people, it becomes more overwhelming and confusing.

If you are not reading about people in their own words, you don’t really know the first thing about them before getting each other’s phone numbers.

If you don’t have long profiles, you won’t have many interesting things to say in your communication beyond, “Hey, you’re hot. Cute dog. Want to hang out sometime?”

If you don’t invest time in getting to know someone before you meet, you will go on more bad dates than you did before because there’s no screening mechanism.

If you feel that people are too shallow and judging on looks alone, you are now relying on an app based entirely on looks, in which its pretty hard to compete.

If you understand the Paradox of Choice, you know that the more choices people have, the harder it is to decide, and the less happy people become.


If you are communicating via text with a ton of people at once, you realize nobody has anything invested in you. You must be prepared for more ghosting, flaking, breadcrumbing, and unsolicited dick pics because when dating is gamified, you are not realy a human being – you are merely one of 20 women he’s texting right now in his quest to see how quickly he can meet and get laid. Good luck competing with the women who send nude photos and want to meet up at 11pm.

Thus, something as benign as a dating app is both problematic and addicting

Something that was designed to solve a problem actually causes deeper problems.

And while everyone complains about these problems, most of us insist that dating apps are the only game in town – so we keep swiping and texting and complaining about the flakes and pervs and indignities that come with being nothing more than a photo on an app, as opposed to a flesh and blood human being with feelings, interests and a personality that cannot be captured via ducklips and emojis.

You know it. I know it. The Atlantic, who wrote this article about how Tinder changed dating, knows it.

I highly encourage you to read that piece and think about whether apps are truly making you happy and providing the optimal dating experience, or if you’re just doing it because it’s the easiest/laziest thing one can do to meet members of the opposite sex.

And if you have noticed the same problems I have about dating apps, what are you going to do differently to get a different result?

Your thoughts, below, are greatly appreciated.