Tinder - One Night Stands To Real Relationships

by GEM Magazine / Sep 08, 2016 / Comments

I can relate to the moment when Carrie from Sex and the City runs into the man she’s dating at a restaurant when he’s on a date with another woman—the moment you realize you’re not the only one they're dating.

Emotions in that moment? Shock, anger, self-anger— the realization that you have never actually discussed, but instead, assumed exclusivity.

So, technically, you don’t have the right to be mad. He didn’t lie to you — and you — well, you just never asked.

A few months ago, I started a blog to create an open and honest space sharing of sex-related stories, experiences, and knowledge. One question recently raised was, in a Tinder-world of one-night stands, how do you find a relationship?

Phase 1: The stalking.

Get on Tinder.
Swipe left until you find a cute one.

Then swipe right.

With a first and last name, you can find out everything. Creep their Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. Google their name.
Hot or not?
Who are you?
What do you do?

Start up a conversation by messaging them. Get their number because you “Hardly ever check Tinder,” and “Texting is way easier anyways.”

Wait until Saturday night to see what they’re up to. Get them to invite you to the party they’re at. Drink... A lot.

Wake up the next morning, feeling nausea roll through you. You had sex the night you just met: Guilt. Shame. Self-disgust. Sneak out before your Tinder hook-up wakes up.

The one-night-stand.

You vow to never use Tinder again. But…maybe…you’ll have better luck next weekend!

It’s true that many relationships today flower out of one-night stands.

You meet someone at the club, go home together, THEN get to know one another in the weeks to come. Two bodies, one night, and zero-emotional attachment.

You know them physically, then mentally, then emotionally.

As Helen Fisher, the biological anthropologist, says; “We’re in an era of fast sex, slow love."

Young adults are the generation of the “hook-up culture.” In colleges and universities, we are notorious for no-strings-attached relationships: sleeping in res rooms, connecting when drunk, and avoiding eye-contact at all costs Monday to Friday afternoon.

But could this one-night-stand turn into something more?

Phase 2: The "thing."

Sure, you still have Tinder, but you find yourself spending less time swiping, and more time texting.

“We’re not dating; we’re seeing each other.”
The gray zone.

You start asking your friends; "Do you think he’s seeing anyone else? Do you think he likes me? Should I tell him how I feel?"

If you’re one of the lucky ones, or should I say if your communication is clear:

Phase 3: The label.

Goodbye Tinder – time to uninstall.

You are now sexually exclusive. You found your person. You hold hands in public. You are “taken.”

Suffering from buyer's remorse?

You discover your partner is a human, not a house!

Today, the standard, long-term monogamous relationship is taking on different shapes and forms. Our relationship model is changing to fit what we actually want, rather than what we should want.

Esther Perel sums it up:

"Monogamy used to be one person for life. Today, monogamy is one person at a time."

As humans, we think in absolutes, in binaries. We have this mindset "yes or no," all or nothing, me or her.

But marriage used to be for reasons of property, social standing, and economic stability—not for love.

Now, according to Perel, we expect our partner to be our best friend and our intelligent equal: the “chosen one.”

Marriages and relationships become overburdened.

Esther Perel continues,

“Today, we turn to one person to provide what an entire village once did: a sense of grounding, meaning, and continuity.”

With more options for relationships, we don’t know how to go from recognizing what we want, to getting what we want. We don’t have a script to follow—the unwritten rules of hook-ups and relationships.

Phase 4: Breaking up with Tinder.

Could happiness come from accepting the fact that we can only be so much?

By letting go of the unrealistic, socially acceptable "ideal" relationship and Tinder obsession, we might actually live happier lives.

The best couples are those who TALK, not ASSUME.

They ask themselves and their partner what they want, and who they are, before choosing to be in an exclusive relationship.

We need to make sure we’re on the same page as our partners. We need to understand ourselves, and our partners’ needs and desires—especially the vulnerabilities and insecurities that people don’t like to talk about, and admit.

We need to be realistic and open-minded. If one person takes advantage of the “open” part of the relationship, and the other doesn’t, it's not going to work.

You and your partner need to ask yourselves honestly; “What would I want for myself, if there were no limitations?”

Having to decipher between what you need and what you want can help you find a sense of self.

It can help you discover who you are. It can help you realize your true wants and desires. It can help you recognize your needs and deal-breakers.

It’s normal to have a one-night-stand. It’s normal to be tempted. It’s normal to be attracted to someone else.
But is it time to get off Tinder, and start enjoying real human connection?

I believe it's time to share our true wants and desires.

By Musa Heinen.

Musa's blog: www.anythingandeverythingsex.com combines her love of writing with sexual education. She's in the process of trying to discover who she is, and who she wants to be, as a young adult, working through past issues that she needs to heal from. Her blog shares personal experiences and invites others to share theirs. It's Musa's hopes to get people talking, sharing, accepting, and healing.


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