Healthy Relationships with Dating Apps

Healthy Relationships with Dating Apps

Can true love be found through online dating? 

  1. Yes
  2. No
  3. Maybe
  4.  All of the above—This is the answer  

For some, online dating and dating apps will be a part of your love story (it’s part of mine). For others, this dating world may be full of cringe-worthy stories (I have my fair share of those too), regrets, and/or meeting a few new friends. 

So, how can we use these online dating resources and apps for our benefit? 

Here are a few tips to help you get the most out of dating apps and achieve healthy relationships with others…

  • Have a healthy relationship with yourself.
    If we desire a healthy relationship with a person through a dating app, the first key is to have a healthy relationship with yourself.

    Get to know yourself. If you are looking to date, the person is going to ask you what you like to do, what kind of music you like, etc. Learn the answers to those questions for yourself. Knowing who you are is going to help you find a person that you connect with. 

  • Know the reason that you are using online dating resources.
    What is the goal? I promise at some point you are going to ask yourself, “Why am I using this app?” 

  • Decide how you want to use the dating app.
    Think about times of days, mental moods, and frequency of use. It can be easy to feel overwhelmed. 

  • Mindset is key.
    Dating is about meeting new people, not necessarily about marriage. A mindset of openness to new people and new experiences can help take the pressure off. 

  • Mindfully swipe.
    It is hard to not simply swipe right or left based on a few pictures, but, keep in mind, that the profile you are swiping is a real person just like you.

    I too fell into the trap of not reading profiles. In doing that, I potentially missed opportunities to see the personalities of men that I was swiping by. 

  • Be aware of your tendency for immediate gratification.
    We are primed to expect information and resources at the drop of a hat (or two-day delivery). A good relationship takes time to find and develop though.

    Be mindful as you utilize dating apps of impatience or frustration. 

  • Remember that it does take time to sift through profiles.
    Keep in mind the time spent sifting through online profiles is similar to the time spent building relationships and noting people of interest in your world outside of dating apps.
  • Know your value and worth.
    Some apps are known for hookup culture or creating expectations around sex. As a unique person, you get to decide what you are okay with and what you are not. You have a choice when and who you have sex with; spend as much time getting to know someone before moving toward intimacy. 

  • Be aware of frequency and motivation behind swiping.
    Research has found that many apps are developed using algorithms similar to slot machines, which can lead to feelings of “highs” when you find a “match.”

  • Be mindful of safety and continue to process dates with friends that you trust.
    Having a team of friends and/or family members to process your experiences with is a value add to the dating process. 

My biggest encouragement is that dating apps can be a great tool to meet and connect with new people!

While online dating may not be for everyone, it could be a helpful resource in developing healthy relationships and making connections with new people when used mindfully.

Kim DeRamus Lareau

Kim DeRamus Lareau
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