Hinge: The “DoorDash” of Dating Apps

Designed to be ghosted.

When entering into a relationship, the first and final mistake is inviting dishonesty. A burning bridge leads from the intrapersonal to interpersonal, intensifying to a blinding, ravenous inferno of dispassion.

Introspection is an often understated prerequisite to sustaining any long-term relationship. Initially, it may seem counterintuitive as, for many, being in various short-term relationships is intended to assist in the journey of self-improvement and prescience whilst erring caution towards involvement with those who hinder or regress that capacity to mature emotionally and independently.

Engaging with others helps to establish varying degrees of independence. Or otherwise confirming independence with reminder of how commensalism manifests in the relationship.

In other words, little to no benefit is derived for them from sharing intimacy with another person, platonically or romantically.

Dishonesty manifests prior to official entry due to insecurity, immodest ego and unresolved engagements from the past. When one has failed to make peace or acceptance with the past, whether in the form of lost loves, trauma or countless mistakes, the vertiginous motif of a stop sign disguised as a yield is erected with permanence.

Too often do people become invested in a relationship with the singular intent or expectation for their partner to be a shield of emotional support.

The road to dependence begins here.

With luck (and a modicum of effort), dishonesty can easily be dispelled with communication. Whether basic or involved, communication is the most effective weapon against premature endings, if not a priceless toll fee to commitment.

Communication is the skeleton key to impressing longevity as both partners gradually but surely establish trust with mutual honesty. The generalised and abductive states that honesty is directly proportional to commitment.

Less honesty = short-term.

More honesty = long-term.

If either partner still expresses hesitation to approach the other with vulnerability after considerable time has passed, the relationship is sentenced to short-term due to an evident lack of self-exploration and resolution inhibiting the interpersonal from any further progression and promising development.

Although discomfort is common cause for the inhibition of candid, vulnerable admission, with the aid of social media, transparency has devolved to a parody of what it means to be vulnerable, essentially stripping away the essence of private candor and making a perfunctory spectacle.

Delusions of grandeur, as it were.

Contemporary society’s prolonged exposure to social media has made us crave attention to the point of borderline addiction.

The way we perceive vulnerability has experienced a sea change. To be vulnerable is no longer a special, intimate exchange shared between two people. Rather a scripted performance scheduled for broadcast to a faceless, nameless audience.

Of further interest is the adopted expression of avoiding vulnerability through those special, intimate exchanges. As ghosting has now become the common currency of dating, tenderness is now synonymous with competition.

The popular approach to communicating is competing to see who can be the most emotionally unavailable. Responding too early is desperation. Responding too late is a precursor to ghosting.

Middle ground is unstable.

Channeling unconscious inspiration from the pneuma of Effy Stonem and mysterious, aloof YA female love interests, lost in translation through case-sensitive, character-limited text posts on Tumblr and Twitter, delayed responses and repressed sentiment are charged for admission fee with outstanding interest of no interest.

Aside from the obvious scourge of economic disparity, the middle sibling of late-stage capitalism embosses an indelible stigma on the dating market.

Contestably, the aforementioned purview of situational vulnerability traces etiology from the advent of online dating.

At the swipe of a thumb, the ability to choose is heightened to an inordinate order of magnitude. A selection of potential partners is conveyed in a seemingly endless scroll.

Dating apps unknowingly perpetuate isolation, unrealistic expectations and despondency by presenting users as both consumer and product.

The outcome is generally akin to one’s experience whilst job hunting.

Process begins with a tireless search, followed by submitting résumé for application, punctuated with an ellipsis of waiting (patience sold separately).

Employers fail to adapt to digital transition, ceding to condescend applicants with uncertainty. If not accepted, no response is received. At best, something automated and disingenuous.

Rookies who have yet to acclimate to this silence are the equivalent victims of ghosting.

The only difference is love and sex aren’t normally incentivised by financial compensation.

Authenticity is only valid when made profitable.

At present, we reside in a glitching matrix where interpersonal politics is governed by a behest to be artificial. Thereby, genuine commitment is a price tag few can afford.

Capitalism is rooted in our dissatisfaction with a single partner.

Moreover, the identity of their relation.

  • Boyfriend?
  • Girlfriend?
  • Spouse?
  • Romantic companion?
  • Someone to drift aimlessly with on this mortal coil?

Monogamy’s life support of virtue and devotion is contingent on the material sentiment and professional photography of marriage ceremonies.

The addictive quality of immediate validation is a parasitic symbiosis to monogamy. Naturally, the only way to counter it is easier said than done, yet no promise of pleasure is achieved from its hypothetical facility.

The ease of walking away from relationships owes special thanks to social media’s agile gait along the tightrope of connection and disconnection.

The ability to interact with hundreds to thousands of people around the globe has overwhelmed us with options.

The ease of discarding years of connection is pronounced by a lasting mark of brevity where the next best thing is available at the tap of a finger.

Any disappointment is felt and discarded in the cursory, unconscious motion of a card transaction.

There is little need to predict several more decades of machine learning and automation as a threat to humanity’s utility when humanity has preemptively taken the organic approach to acceleration.

An additional factor of consideration is the expedience of ghosting and unofficial relationship statuses as prototypical alternatives to breaking up.

In this way, the plaint against social media is making break-ups a mythical occurrence. As aspired as the timeless, cinematic depiction of romance itself.

With the current trend of short-term ‘situationships’ and hookup culture, the concept of breaking up is remote, if not progressively obsolescent. Replaced by the aforementioned factor of convenience.

Distance is yet another form of popular credit, signifying merits of attraction in an era of decision paralysis.

For every ideal match, there is the unmatched.

The unprecedented magnitude of social media and online dating’s effect on how humans, especially contemporary youth, approach sex and emotion, is significant in reinforcing a transition from organic, physical communication to video calling, increasing pressure for vocal interaction when assimilated to the articulated yet empty arrangement of typed words in a text box.

Above all, emphasising unrealistic expectations with overexposure to porn as an easy avenue for instant gratification, compared to a reality of constant rejection.

For reasons as equally unclear in the modern job climate, employers may often eschew informing applicants of rejection.

Dating prospects experience the same clinical ‘ghosting’ with a sudden, unexplained absence as a means of conveying loss of interest, fear of commitment, or any number of reasons that supports the simplicity of avoiding confrontation.

Nevertheless, ghosting should not always be cause for due criticism.

In some cases, this abrupt, indefinite silence may be the best course of action for one concerned about personal safety, or having gauged enough of the person’s personality to foreshadow the ghosted party’s poor response to accepting any emphatic declaration of rejection, forcing the rejector to endure harassing texts and/or phone calls.

In any case, barring extraneous circumstance, explicit rejection, a.k.a candid confession of disinterest, should always be considered and employed as the mature option.

Online dating is the safe, convenient alternative to any effort required for meeting people in natural settings.

Even more so, the effort necessary in committing to the arduous yet rewarding journey of mutual understanding, connection and intimacy.

Honesty is both an individual and collective policy.

If moving forward from past relationships, ghosting may assume a more traditional, tangible form with a third, unwanted addition.

Recovery and transition varies, but if years pass and your inability to bury nostalgia persists to burden the new partner as a therapist, it is unfair to either party.

Evidently, connection is lacking.

The new partner is dealt a grave injustice by being dismissed as secondary. Relationship status? Amensalism. One partner is negatively affected. The other, neither benefitting nor losing.

Communication is the panacea for combatting any type of symbiosis that deviates from mutualistic, but can only be optimal when complementary to honesty.

Success rate of treatment when pairing communication with the pre-existing condition of dishonesty does not guarantee efficacy for everyone.

Good communication involves honesty as a piecemeal baseline. If being vulnerable is accompanied by hesitation and the urge to compartmentalise or condense the truth, there can be no trust.

“The truth will set you free.”

Few statements are as transparent.

“There is consequence to every action.”

Truth, whether availing or detrimental, is vital to personal growth.

With emotional maturity, the partner receiving should be understanding and forgiving. If brutal honesty persists to be wounding, abort mission.

The fleeting thrill of secrecy and infidelity will enable inhibition at the hefty expense of denying any depth of intimacy. Thus, the pity party of perceived misunderstanding and lack of connection contends to be lamented in dramatic fashion, potentially expressing as a precursor to domestic violence as well as permitting a free trial of toxicity sans effectiveness of mithridatism.

In the context of human relationships, amensalism primes the affected party with apposite frustration, evincing as effective communicators with a sufficient degree of emotional maturity, yet their significant other demonstrates an imbalance.

Inevitably, a strain is imposed.

The emotionally immature partner expresses enough trust to communicate sentiments of lacking connection, but doesn’t make the effort to present a detailed explanation as to why they feel simultaneously involved yet distant.

Intuitively, we presume a projection of the past, consciously or unconsciously impressed.

The partner who continues to be plagued by intrusive thoughts of their ex is indirectly subjecting the ex and current lover to comparison.

Such behaviour is inclined to abort the relationship by default, contesting a preserved, static memory with a dynamic, positive energy.

In essence, one partner feels more connected than the other, but not for lack of the disconnected tracing origin to an errant frequency.

The signal has been defunct since the cord was cut, distinctly irredeemable. Still and all, the disconnected sabotages both the relationship and themselves by investing wasted time and misguided emotion towards repairing the ruined circuits in a blighted area of evicted residence.

Commitment requires consistent maintenance towards making the new system work in equal favour.

The new system is not without fault, but it is these complications that encourage improvement and sustainability.

Argument and confrontation should never be avoided.

Emotions should never be suppressed.

Disagreement is a lesson in tolerance.

All ostensibly difficult aspects of relationships, socially engineered to express aversion, are essential and ineluctable.

In cases where romantic partners express a mutual misunderstanding in long-term relationships, dejection may manifest in response to a perceived disconnect.

One or both partners feel futility in communicating if denied by the learned instinct of censoring, thus leading to an impasse where one or both parties are disinclined to express vulnerability and candor.

One partner believes distance is protection.

The other expresses a humoured yet no less concerned desire for closer connection.

Partner One is open and revealing, but Partner Two receives it with insincerity and doubt.

Partner One is not secretive, but selective of the information shared.

Often, it is not a matter of sensitivity but empathy.

Partner One is not affected negatively by any past trauma.

Ipso facto, Partner One’s reticence may be attributed to an unspoken obligation of diplomacy towards Partner Two’s unresolved trauma.

When we attempt to convey thoughts and feelings as a message, it can often be a discouraging reminder of how limited and ineffective communication can be, regardless the method.

Multiple forms of communication can be effected. Visual to written to spoken to visceral. Yet, each language is thwarted by the teasing kiss of interpretation.

Ultimately, to secure confidence in the continuity and stability of interpersonal relations, we must rely on time and patience for the nature of perception to be employed as a dubious arbiter.

Most are unwilling to rekindle the initial spark because the misconception of a fairytail romance is deconstructed.

Love does, indeed, triumph, but it is not easy.

Thereby, the common assertion stating otherwise must be dispelled.

Love is a test.

A trial.

If there is no struggle to endure, no obstacles to face, no challenges to overcome, no new knowledge to gain, continuously learning about and improving upon strengths and weaknesses shared amongst each other, there is only the vestigial husk of lust.

Not merely for carnal knowledge, but lust for the honeymoon period.

The all-consuming, possessive portrayal where co-dependence is dangerously misconstrued for love and affection.

Healthy, unconditional love is never feeling alone or worried in your partner’s absence.

Infidelity is of little concern and, if so, can simply be discussed at length, calmly, sensibly; assessed, conscientiously, to determine the best path proceeding.

Far removed from basic instinct of separation without hearing.

Many may justify “falling out of love” with the introduction of children. In truth, the gamut of adult responsibility takes a critical toll on relationships, yet this is only representative of the aforementioned trials that are expected from any average rapport, provided one or both parties demonstrate a sufficient aptitude for emotional intelligence.

The ability to handle problems with prudence and poise in joint discretion is crucial to ensuring stability and endurance.

Again, the issue persists from one or both partners clinging to lofty ambitions cited from media portrayals of romance throughout the course of cinematic history.

Among the most popular themes for viewership.

As a genre, romance is archetypal for feminine appeal.

Nevertheless, the motif is pervasive. Whether by vice of perversion or ambiguous virtue of liberty, myriad films satisfy an undeclared quota for inclusion of at least one act/scene of romantic and/or sexual engagement.

These performances aim to project a nearly inimitable depiction of romance and sex, which often leads to disillusionment with “the real thing”.

Contemporary youth’s approach to either has been cheapened by the advent of online dating and social media.

Online dating facilitates the act of ‘ghosting’, a Millennial-coined term characterised by an abrupt cessation of contact, alluding to an indirect (see cowardly) admission of lost interest.

Social media is a boon in that it connects us on a cosmopolitan level.

We are all connected, but at what cost?

The distinctive scent of legal tender isn’t suasive enough to compel a demographic who persists to be financially-challenged well into the “settling years”.

The “Im” in imperfection is apostrophied, emphasising the rise of egocentric conditioning.

Media engineering has socialised modern youth more than ever to eschew commitment in favour of filling the hollow appeal of multiplicity.

Multiplicity, which propagates dissatisfaction.

Dissatisfaction, which perpetuates the cycle of dating trends, establishing the only decisive choice of indecision.

Studies allegedly show that Millennials have lower divorce rates compared to their parents/grandparents.

A dubious statement that may likely be attested by a disproportionate percentage of Millennials either delaying marriage or choosing not to marry at all.

Although cultural difference remains indelible with regards to teen pregnancy and youth marriage, many are indeed marrying later, on average, as well as practicing safer sex.

Promoting autonomy for both sexes has made the decision to be childfree more socially acceptable.

Overall, it should be intuited that the dating scene would be more optimistic.

However, the detriments of dating apps and aggrandised output on social media platforms nearly erases any abiding interest for honesty and authenticity.

As a result, communication suffers well before a substantial rapport is able to be established.

From one perspective, ghosting is a safe and reasonable option when contending with individuals who lack the emotional maturity needed to accept rejection.

From the common perspective, ghosting is considered discourteous to those who would prefer a direct response as to whether or not the person is still interested.

The outcome is a standard, adopted pattern of passive interest where potential partners are available at the swipe of a thumb in a seemingly endless selection.

Furthermore, with the popularity of couples channels on YouTube, viewers may compensate participatory, interpersonal relationships (platonic or romantic) by living vicariously through the relationships presented by others via an easily accessible platform.

By relating or aspiring to these projected experiences, they are content with introjecting.

In other words, organically programming personality separate from the self.

In this case, the identified gender or relatable persona of the couple.

Modern dating culture created the term ‘ghosting’.

Or, at least, giving a name to something previously existing, now emboldened with recognition.

On the receiving end, after regular messaging and exchanging of sensitive details, the individual is left bereaved when the stream of text walls suddenly stops.

The bereaved, in question, is left with a poorly haunting impression of an apparition whose egocentric reflex surrenders to the inconsiderate trend of ceasing contact with only the gnarled remains of a gaping, numerical maw (see zero) explanation or reasoning.

Provided either is mutually exclusive.

Modern dating culture, otherwise abridged to ‘microwave culture’, is a mutated byproduct of the egocentrism from senescent predecessors.

Performance is the veritable hallmark of contemporary dating customs where every response must be strategic and competition yields to the most emotionally unavailable.

Online dating has become the pinnacle of late-stage capitalism.

People have devolved to products browsed at the mere swipe of a thumb and cursory glance through detailed and empty profiles alike.

Dating has devolved romance to a script.

Connections are now tailored for individual pleasure. Performed for others, yet commensalistic to the self.

Ergo, ‘love’ has been contorted to the misshapen art of entertainment value.

Some couples channels unknowingly encourage intimate partner violence with prank themes centred around provoking the significant other to anger with physical, injurious, potentially lethal, reactions for the dubious consent of amusement.

Such a revision has been inculcated by these YouTube algorithms recycling carbon copies of mimetic couples to which naive, asocial watchers derive a witty grist of inspiration.

Contemporary youth is, thereby, conditioned to an en masse, cognitive evolution wherein the development of a range of personality disorders manifests as a symptom of the most abused substance distributed on a global scale.

Recent dating apps like Hinge employ the marketing strategy “designed to be deleted”.

The claim is countered by an expected paywall.

Conventionally attractive users cannot be accessed without a periodical fee. A tactic as risible as it is contrary for the decidedly average cohort of developers.

The methodology is a means of eliminating undesirable candidates, primarily on the basis of employment status, vehicle ownership and residential independence.

An elaborate way of saying anyone who doesn’t meet the criteria for consumeristic adulthood which, by vice of economic disparity of price inflation and stagnant income, has delayed the very execution, if not questioning the validity of concept.

With adolescence extending well into the vicenarian stage, the future is uncertain for ensuring a stable housing and job market with due concern to succeeding inheritors.

Contemporary youth is steadily on track to inheriting a dearth of wealth.

Modern dating culture is the impossible generational expectation of growing up, from which the curse is extending the age of majority until surpassing the average life expectancy.

Growing out of age, rather than in.

Elder generation’s fixation on the younger generation “growing up” means they likely never will.

Summarily, the perfect partner is an exclusive feature of online dating.

The imperfections of engaging this partner in a real, tactile environs is the prime deterrent of supplying momentum to the angled thumb.

Commence the trained sequence of copy-paste introductions, ghosting bodies and incomplete conclusions.

Honesty? Check.

Communication? Check.

Commitment? Check.

Verdict?

Swipe left.

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