Hey you. Long time no talk. I know, I know. I haven’t been really paying attention to you lately, and you deserve an explanation. I promise I won’t give you some cliché “It’s not you, it’s me” line. I’ll give it to you straight.
I used to come around all the time; we were practically joined at the hip. We were together right when I woke up in the morning – giddy and twitterpated about new matches. I’d sneak into the bathroom at work to get some swipes in. More times than I care to admit, I’d catch someone on the bus looking over my shoulder and disapproving of a profile I was visiting. But I didn’t care. Wake up? Tinder. Lunch break? Tinder. Late night cocktails? Tinder. It was you and me; all day, every day.
You were there for me, Tinder. I moved to a new city freshly single, ready to mingle but ultimately not sure about how to meet people and there you were. A little flame image next to my Weather App telling me, “Maybe someone’s out there who wants to check out that bar with you!” or “He’s cute and will make you not hate yourself for stalking your ex’s Facebook at 3 a.m. this morning.” You made the world of online dating seem simple and not so terrifying and intimidating. All I have to do is swipe and chat and then wham, bam, dinner and a movie with a man?! Amazing. I wouldn’t have some of the truly magnificent dating stories I have in my back pocket for my future memoir if it weren’t for you, Tinder. So for that, I have to thank you.
Initially, all of the gross messages like “I was going to call heaven and ask for angel but now I’m just praying that you’re a slut” were entertaining. I laughed about them, screenshotted and sent the messages to my friends. I’d joke about how chivalry was clearly dead, how much I hated myself for being on Tinder. I acted like the messages didn’t get to me, didn’t skeeze me out. But after twelve “Dtf? *eggplant*” messages in a row, it starts to take a toll – you lose all faith in men in general. I’d swear you off, commit to meeting people the old fashioned way. And then I’d lie about checking work emails and stealth swipe under the table; too embarrassed to admit that I just didn’t know how to quit you.
You’re like Taco Bell after last call, Tinder. Seems like a good idea thanks to $11 pitchers, but I’m just going to wake up the next morning feeling greasy and regretting everything. You’re basically the disgusting hookup partner that I’ll go to when I’m desperate, but if I run into in public I’m going to pretend like I have a phone call and I don’t see you. I’m keeping you on the hook “just in case,” and it’s time that I set you free.
Our relationship has just become me using you because I’m lonely and a little wine drunk after midnight, and that’s not really fair. I’m becoming one of those girls who’s “collecting matches” but not doing anything about it. You deserve better than that! You deserve someone who will proudly say, “Hell yeah! I swiped right!” And I just don’t think I can be that girl.
We want different things, Tinder. I want someone with a savings account who knows how do his own laundry without calling his mom. You want a girl who won’t double text. I want a guy who will go whale watching and paddle boarding with me all summer. You want a girl who will be out by 8 a.m. I shouldn’t have to settle for hookups who bail on Mad Max because I mentioned I had a hard day, and you shouldn’t have to pretend to be interested in what I have to say when you’re just hoping I’ll let you get to third.
I think we’ve both known that this wasn’t working for a while. Maybe I’m growing up, and you’re just staying the same. Maybe I’m ready to upgrade off the happy hour menu, and you’re still looking for the cheapest beer on the list. Or maybe you started playing ads, and that’s some bullshit.
So good luck out there, Tinder. I’m sure we’ll see other again after a drunk date tells me about his mom dating his ex-boyfriend and then offers to buy me snacks with his food stamps.
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