Is Online Dating Hard For Men, Women? Dating App Frustration, Depression, Mental Health, Psychological Effects: Does Online Dating Work? Is Online Dating Bad?
As an online dating consultant and someone who has worked with thousands of clients I am here to say online dating sucks. It is something you will not hear from any other person in my position, but it is true. It’s not for everyone.
Why would I say this? Easy. Most people have no clue what they are doing and have no clue why they are experiencing the results they do. Some lack self-awareness, some lack approachability, some lack realistic expectations and some just lack proper etiquette.
Even if you do everything by the book, it’s not going to be easy for some people. Gender ratios, preferences for skin tones, height, lifestyle choices, location, style matter. Sometimes people need to take a break. Below are some things you should be aware of before using apps.
(related read: Why Am I Getting No Likes, Matches On Bumble, Hinge)
(related read: Benefits Of Online Dating)
Online Dating Opinion: Is Online Dating A Good Idea? Online Dating Controversy, Online Dating Experience, Should I Bother With Dating Apps
Dating apps are a great way to meet people outside your social circles, routines, and day to day life but only if you do it right. Creating a good profile is needed along with patience, self-awareness, realistic expectations, timing, strategy and location.
Many people lack one or more of these items and as a result, get frustrated easily and give up. Dating app burnout is real. I can bucket the reasons why people are so sick and tired of online dating into a few categories.
Bad Dating Profiles: Self-Sabotage of Photos, Profiles and Answers
Most people take awful photos, boring cliche photos, don’t know how to write about themselves nor know how to write good messages. Lots of people copy and paste awful prompts, pickup lines, bios and photos.
If you try to play prevent defense on your dating profile, you will end up like the Atlanta Falcons in the Super Bowl against the New England Patriots.
Be bold. Be authentic. Be vulnerable. Be yourself. Playing it safe and using vague, generic short answers will make it hard for you to stand out from the competition.
Use lesser obvious references to establish stronger connections online. Make it easier for others to comment on a prompt, react to a photo and inquire about something in your bio.
THERE IS ALWAYS ROOM FOR IMPROVEMENT WITH YOUR PHOTOS, BIOS, PROMPTS & MESSAGES!
YOU ARE ONLY AS ATTRACTIVE AS YOUR WORST PHOTO!
Not Knowing What They Want: Time Wasters On Dating Sites, Online Dating Pitfalls
Most people on dating apps do so because of loneliness, busy lifestyles, or offline inexperience with meeting people. I have a tip for you, online dating is no better than offline dating.
Dating apps are merely introduction apps. You will be introduced to hookups, pen pals, catfishers, spammers, lonely people, creeps and occasional folks looking for dates with relationships as a possibility.
If someone is vague, generic, uses laundry lists of adjectives or has lazy low effort bios, don’t make excuses for them. Most people are exactly who they describe themselves as online but that doesn’t mean you should take them at their word.
If someone is only asking you to meet at their place for a first date, insists on drinks for a first date, is too aggressive and asks for your number or requests to take conversations off the app quickly, take that as a red flag.
People who are too smooth with witty pickup lines, are slow to respond to messages or only respond to messages but never initiate them, proceed with caution.
Patience, questions, difficult situations, time will reveal people’s true colors.
Dating App Anonymity: Inability to Screen and Filter People Effectively
If you want a hookup, great, have fun! Live your life. But if you are expecting to turn sex on a first date into a relationship, you will be sorely disappointed.
Know what you want, what you don’t want and don’t make excuses. Someone who takes excessive selfies is either self-absorbed or narcissistic or doesn’t have friends.
Someone who dresses provocatively, has half naked photos on their dating profile likely needs validation, is insecure or doesn’t want a relationship. There are always exceptions to the rules but with dating apps, you have to make quick decisions based on photos, bios and messages.
Assume nothing, assume everything.
Wrong Dating App Choices, What Are The Best Dating Apps, Dating Apps That Work
Not everyone is looking for a hookup on Tinder but to assume most people want a monogamous relationship is ridiculous. Cities where CMB, Hinge and Bumble are popular, Tinder is viewed as a hookup app. In more remote places, Tinder is the only choice.
Similarly, just because someone is on Coffee Meets Bagel, Hinge or Bumble doesn’t mean they want a relationship or date. Don’t take people at their face value (THIS IS NO DIFFERENT From MEETING SOMEONE OFFLINE).
Lots of people treat dating apps like Uber Eats while you should be treating them like an app like Couchsurfing. The smartest people I know in terms or reading people know how to filter and screen Couchsurfers. For tips on which dating apps you should use, read this post.
Problems With Online Dating: Impatience, Too Eager On Dating Apps
If you think you can find the one right away or in a matter of weeks, dating will be rough for you. Just because your taller, slimmer, more attractive friend met someone asap, doesn’t mean you will.
Love takes time. You can’t expect to flip the switch and meet someone instantly. Yes, it can happen quickly, but it is not the norm.
If you want to prioritize meeting someone of quality, make the effort with time, emotional availability, energy, effort and thoughtfulness. Be realistic with your expectation, develop self-awareness.
Dating App User Error: Online Dating Mistakes To Avoid
Many people do not know how to use dating apps. They think all apps are the same or all apps are similar to non-dating apps they have used for work, pleasure, productivity etc.
Dating apps main focus is monetization. They will get your hopes up, send you notifications frequently and prey on your vulnerability. Paying for premium features will not make you more attractive, desirable.
You can meet amazing people on dating apps but you can’t expect them to do all the work for you or have your best interest at heart. Don’t expect them to conduct exhaustive backgrounds checks or screen out creeps and time-wasters.
Am I Too Picky? Being Too Picky On Dating Apps
This article title Why Women Need to Date Carpenters Like Men Date Yoga Instructors does an excellent job of highlighting how men are less picky about women when it comes to age, education, height and income.
Similarly, for men being too picky because you feel entitled because of your physique, job title, salary or position doesn’t make up for character and personality.
Women these days are far more educated than men and can afford to be more picky than ever before. There is a fine line between preferences and deal-breakers – it’s up to you where you want to draw the line.
Tighten your age range as leaving it too wide will cause you to receive worst profiles over time.
Online Dating Reddit Sub-Reddits & Forums
If you look for advice and tips online like forums like Reddit, you will go down very dark, disturbing rabbit holes. r/Tinder is filled with screenshots conversations, r/RedPill will talk about how women are the reason for men’s failures, r/HingeApp will make fun of women’s prompt choices.
There are some good pieces of advice here and there but it is important to understand the type of users who frequent such boards – single boys and men who have struggled to succeed with dating apps.
Dating App Fatigue + Dating Profile Fatigue: Getting Nowhere With Dating Apps
If you spend too much time on an app, either you will get frustrated and fatigued or the people seeing your profile will. It helps to update your profile completely (not small incremental changes) or take a break for a bit. Being on a dating app too long is not a good look for most folks.
Change your main profile photo, always aim to update/replace your worst photo (people will judge you by your worst photo). Get unbiased feedback on your photos, bio, prompts, first lines, app choices, smiles, wardrobe and approachability.
Dating Coach Services - Men & Women
First date ideas, wardrobe styling, places to meet singles, where to sit at bars & restaurants, body language, vocal intonation, eye contact, conversation skills, how to be more approachable, conversation starters, mock dates, and more.
-As seen in the NYT, WSJ & More
Over Swiping, Swiping Right Too Much On Tinder, Bumble; Liking Too Much On Hinge
Beggars can’t be choosers but if you swipe right or like profiles too much, too quickly, it can hurt you. Few likes or matches can lead to a downward spiral of despair forcing people to swipe more and get even more frustrated.
Apps like Bumble and Tinder can penalize users for appearing like bots or not being too discerning (spending time reviewing profiles) by displaying their profile less and less. Some users then swipe even more to avoid repeat profiles while others pay for boosts that merely don’t do much.
Why Online Dating Doesn’t Work: Dating Apps Are Merely Introduction Apps. You Date Offline.
Online dating requires effort, knowledge, good judgment, time and good mental health to have a good chance at success. People too much pressure on first dates to be their everything, be their best friend be their confidant or be their therapist. This is too much to ask of a stranger.
If you are unable or unwilling to meet people organically offline, you will likely not fare better online. You meet online but date offline (flirting, planning dates, dressing up, being thoughtful are all traits that are need offline and online).
One thing most people fail to work on is on their communication skills, writing skills and general social skills. Expand your reading, musical tastes, food preferences, show/movie/podcast binging and keep up with local trends.
Is Online Dating Worth It? Online Dating Success Rate (Can Online Dating Work?)
I outlined some frustrations around dating above, but you may be wondering, is online dating it worth it? The short answer it depends on many factors around you, what you want, what you are willing to compromise, demographics and more.
You can’t just show up, create a profile and expect results. Dating takes time, patience, self-awareness and being mentally, socially, emotionally ready and available.
If you self-sabotage your profile with bad photos, profiles, writing skills, don’t expect to be successful. Most people never seek independent, unbiased feedback. It’s like trying out for a sports team without training ahead of time.
Can’t just show up and expect to make the team. Sure some people are more gifted than others, but you can’t expect one-off immediate successes to be common. Just because your hot friend met someone great in one week doesn’t mean you will.
Dating apps are a supplemental way to meet others outside your routine, daily life. Dating apps are merely introduction apps, you date offline. It doesn’t matter what you are in real life if you don’t know how to effectively market yourself online.
Don’t use apps like food order apps – you can’t expedite the process to find love, you still have to date, still have to be patient and still need to learn how to screen people.
Bad dates are inevitable, but they help you get closer to what you seek if you know what you want and are willing to put in the work.
Why Dating Apps Don’t Work For Guys: Why Online Dating Is Hard For Guys
Many guys make the mistake of creating a profile without putting much effort into it. Would you send a resume with typos to your dream job?
Creating a great dating profile takes time. It requires patience, self-awareness, realistic expectations and most importantly knowledge of dating app user bases. It’s always better to invest in yourself and your profile rather than pay for boosts that don’t work for most guys.
Some apps have high male to female ratios while apps like Bumble require great photos, bios and captions since men cannot message first. Other apps tend to fair better for short guys while other apps are best for more quirky, artsy and non-mainstream men.
Even if you are an attractive guy, you can still do miserable on dating apps. Photos and profiles that worked on Tinder in your 20s may not work on Hinge and Bumble in your 30s.
Having a great profile and photos means nothing if you don’t know how to send a first intro message to a girl or if you just send likes without comments.
Read this post to see if you are optimizing on all fronts with respect to your dating efforts.
Why Is Online Dating So Bad: Online Dating Is Not For Me (Online Dating Is A Waste Of Time)
When all is said and done, dating apps are not for everyone. Whether it’s lack of self-awareness, realistic expectations, self-sabotage, ability to screen profiles, ability to ready people or unfavorable location, age or preferences, dating apps take time, patience and luck.
Even if you have all this down, you still need to learn how to flirt, communicate well, engage in conversations and go on dates.
Many people lack the skills to filter out people, transition from online to offline or simply not willing to do the work to prioritize dating. Dating apps are not ordering apps, this is not Burger King – you can’t always have things your way.
The purpose of dating apps is to get to know people offline through a digital introduction. Trying to rush it is a recipe for disaster. Enjoy the dating process, all the ambiguity, all the butterflies, all the possibilities but most importantly, know what you and learn how to screen for it.
Why You Should Quit Online Dating: Online Dating Is Depressing, Frustrating
Insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. Spending more time on apps, downloading more apps, paying for apps and updating your profile may not yield any improvement with online dating.
Having success with dating apps requires knowledge, focus, patience, awareness, and self-improvement.
If you spend too much time on dating apps and pouring your entire self-worth into it, it can affect others parts of your life.
If you don’t get proper help from an experienced, trusted professional don’t continue down the dark path of despair. It’s not worth it. It can lead to depression quite quickly, easily.
Online Dating Sucks: Is Online Dating For Losers? Is It Pathetic To Use Online Dating?
No, but it can feel like that because lots of people have awful profiles, photos. Rather than focus on those that you don’t care about, focus on those who put in the effort and are worth it.
The great catches get snatched up quick on dating apps so if you are not seeing results, take a break, work on yourself and get some independent feedback on your photos, profile, app choice etc.
Friends and family can be biased so seek out help from a stranger who will be brutally honest and see you like someone on the app would.
Can’t Find Anyone On Dating Apps, Not Attracted To Anyone On Dating Sites, Negative Effects Of Online Dating
It could be you are too picky. It could be your photos are bad or your profile is lazy. It could be that you are stuck in the Hinge algorithm bug. It could be your don’t know how to screen profiles nor read people.
It could be you don’t know what you want or you are on the wrong apps or your photos signal things differently than what you seek.
The Problem With Dating Apps: Why Do Dating Apps Suck, Why Dating Apps Are Bad, Dating Apps Are Toxic
Dating apps are not ordering apps. They require effort. If you are looking to dabble part-time or just see what is out there, you are not doing it right.
You get out what you put in. Even then, many people can be biased, have unrealistic expectations or lack self-awareness. With that said, the more you get left swiped by people you right swipe on, the less visible you will be.
It’s important to have realistic expectations, patience, great profile and make good lifestyle choices.
Why Am I Getting No Likes On Dating Apps, No Likes On Hinge, Bumble, No Matches On Hinge, Bumble: Online Dating Experience
It could be bad photos, it could be dark, distant or grainy photos, it could be too many selfies, it could be lack of smiles, interests, hobbies or approachability. It could be unrealistic expectations with age, distance or looks.
There are way too many unknowns to figure this out however troubleshooting all these items will get you closer to figure out the answer.
If you manage to get no likes nor matchs on apps after a few weeks, months. Take a break. Insanity is doing the same thing expecting different results.
Why Am I Getting No Matches On Bumble, Hinge. Sick Of Dating Apps
It could be the likes you are receiving are not from the people close to you, nearby or in your desired age ranges. It could be you are not patient (things take time).
It can take weeks, months for people to see your likes and vice-versa. If you want to learn how to get more matches on dating sites, read this post.
Can’t Find Love On Dating Apps: Bumble Sucks, Hinge Sucks, Tinder Sucks, Tinder Is A Waste Of Time, Why Online Dating Is Bad, Online Dating Is Toxic
Dating apps are merely introduction tools, not ordering apps. These things take take and if you don’t know how to screen profiles, read people, be patient, communicate boundaries and cut things off in situations where the other person clearly doesn’t want the same things as you, you should get off the apps.
Online Dating Preferences, Deal-breakers & Filters
People are more selective on apps than they are in person. Some will go as to far as to explicity say they don’t want ex body types, races, etc. Preferences are fine but seeing these things in bios all the time can be discouraging.
It’s harder to make a good first impression on a dating app with limited info, photos etc. Many people are not good at taking photos nor writing about themselves which is why jobs in these fields have sprouted in the last decade.
I Don’t Want To Go On Dating Apps: Why Are People Afraid Of Online Dating
That’s fine but these days, most people are meeting via dating apps and if you are not on them, you are missing out on a huge portion of people who are single looking to meet others like you.
This is more true now than ever during Covid. If you are not on dating apps, you are missing out on a large portion of the population.
Some people are afraid to be rejected or have privacy concerns. Others feel awkward while others are too embarrassed to join apps and have others seem them.
What the reason, not everyone is confident and able to brush off rejection and be able to approach dating apps with the thick skin, patience needed to succeed.
What Is The Best App To Find A Partner, Serious Relationship
That depends on your age, location, lifestyle and other items. Before you can find a partner, you need to learn how to date yourself first.
You can’t skip steps. Knowing which app is best for you is a crucial step in the process but your offline and online presence matter even more than the app choice in some cases.
Make sure you have good photos, practice writing about yourself and build up a range of skills, hobbies and interests to appeal to others.
Are Dating Apps Ruining Dating?
In a way, yes, they are. They are training people with bad etiquette, manners and expectations. Most people think twice about going out and trying to meet people actively whereas with apps, many times, people are completely lazy and lack self-awareness.
Dating apps give people a false sense of hope in that they can do next to nothing and expect results. As a result, the few that actually put in work, don’t rely on apps 100% of the time, work on themselves and exert effort, patience, self-awareness and proper etiquette have higher chances for success.
Those with unhealthy attitudes and outlooks are more likely to become hermits, stop going offline to meet people and exert their frustrations and displeasures with people online as a result. If you know how to ID red flags, screen people and cut off time wasters, this shouldn’t be an issue.
Bad Things About Online Dating, What Is Online Dating Like For A Man, Online Dating Sucks For Men, Why Is Online Dating So Hard For Guys
List of mistakes and self-sabotaging efforts men inflict on themselves.
Are Guys On Dating Apps Looking For Relationships?
Some are, some are not. Read this.
What To Do When Online Dating Doesn’t Work, No Matches On Dating Apps, I Hate Dating Apps
Online Dating Critique, Makeover For Men & Women
Strategy (App Choice + Timing + First Messages), Photo Critique, Bios + Prompts + Photo Captions, Wardrobe Feedback, Grooming Suggestions, Clothing & Hairstyle Recommendations, Body Language, Smiles, Etiquette & More
-As seen in the NYT, WSJ & More
Additional Reading: Problems With Online Dating & Are Dating Apps A Waste Of Time, Dating App Burnout, Dating Apps Feel Like A Chore, Dating Apps That Work, Online Dating Frustration, Truth About Dating Apps
Best Dating Apps – Dating Apps That Work
About Eddie Hernandez
Eddie Hernandez is a dating consultant for men & women and a professional photographer based in San Francisco, servicing clients in NYC, LA, Chicago, and beyond as seen in the NYT, WSJ, SFGate, ABC7News & more.
Previously an analytics professional and user of dating apps himself, he possesses unique insight into the inner workings of dating apps and user behavior. He provides guidance around app choice, bio optimization, messaging techniques, wardrobe advice, image consulting, date planning, screening profiles, ID'ing red flags, and offline techniques for meeting people organically.
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