My Thoughts on Modern Dating

My Thoughts on Modern Dating

Being a 26-year old woman trying to navigate this modern “dating” scene is exhausting at best. As most millennials can attest to, the “hook up” culture is really at a new high, and the word “relationship” is slowly but surely becoming a thing of the past.

I remember growing up and hearing my Dad recall of when he was dating my Mom. He would drive from his home to hers, over an hour, to see her and then would go to work on no sleep at 5 AM the following day. JUST SO HE COULD SEE HER. I was always hopeful I would find a love like that. I’m still hopeful that I will find that one day, however, it’s definitely difficult in the dating culture we currently face.

I don’t even know if I can call it DATING culture, because GOD forbid you actually use the “d” word. It is more likely men asking you to “hang out”. The frequency of that line is honestly concerning.

Modern Dating in a Nutshell… 

You go on a few “good dates”, or so you think. You then obsessively check your phone for text messages for the next 24 hours because you really have no clue where you stand. God forbid you end up having actual feelings for someone. Watch out- you are only hanging out. Confused about where you stand? Too bad. You can’t ASK because then you will appear too “needy” and attached. Want to hang out with this person two days in a row? FORGET ABOUT IT. You better be careful not to double text, too. Thinking of defining the relationship?
That’s a good way to ensure you are alone, forever.

All of these unspoken rules create a dating world that is completely unsatisfying and it is like walking on egg shells, to be perfectly honest. We, as a generation, are so opposed to the idea of actually opening up to someone and FEELING something. It’s become the cultural norm to just abide by these rules and hold your tongue. The game is completely exhausting, in my opinion.

There is no face-to-face communication, either. Difficult conversations and arguments are often done through text message. We are so used to hiding behind the screen rather than actually dealing with emotions or feelings head-on.

Enter Social Media & Online Dating…

Social Media and the Internet in general, in my opinion, are to blame for the massive change in the dating scene today. We have been brought up to expect instant gratification and are taught to “never settle”. Although I do agree with not settling, I think this is part of the reason that relationships are so uncommon now. It is FAR more common to see two people “talking” or just “hanging out”. It’s like everyone is so terrified to put a label on anything now.

Look back to the 1950’s. “NETFLIX AND CHILL” would be completely cringe-worthy and would be something no one even considered (even if Netflix HAD been a thing back then). The man would be happy to come pick up the woman at her home, knock on the door, and open her car door. He would put in the work, happily, and would treat his date like the ultimate lady.

Tinder. There is something to be said for online dating. I’m not a complete hater. Dating can be more accessible than ever in this modern world, with the ability to connect with like-minded individuals from the comfort of your own home. That being said, I personally cannot stand online dating, because it is also as IMPERSONAL as ever.

You are essentially swiping based on someone’s thumbnail photo, their outward appearance, ignorant to any non-physical traits. Nothing more shallow than that. Ridiculous, right? Yet that’s what we do. Back in the day, people actually TALKED face to face. Maybe that’s why relationships were more successful. They would communicate, face-to-face, with people and were attracted to people based on more than just their appearance.

There is something to be said for TOO MUCH CHOICE. Yes, choice is good, however it really prevents people from building meaningful relationships. For example, you connect with someone on Tinder. You chat for weeks, while also talking to about 10 other people. It is hard to build a meaningful connection this way as you are always looking for “something better” rather than getting to really know one another.

The Question of: WHO PAYS THE BILL?

Who pays the bill? That’s another common controversial topic in today’s dating game. Back in the day, it was common for the man to always pick up the check. That’s just how things were done back then. Today, it is much more common to split the bill. I don’t necessarily think there is anything wrong with this. With the women’s empowerment culture we are in today, it is empowering to know that women and men are equal and are both capable of paying for the check. That being said, it is still basic decency for the man to pick up the check on the first date, or at least offer to. 59% of people feel the same exact way about this, according to a study done by LearnVest.

So… Is Chivalry Really Dead?

Now, onto the million dollar question: Is chivalry really dead? I don’t think it is. There are still gentlemen out there who care about woo-ing their lady. I still stand by the fact that this is FAR less common. It’s a matter of waiting until you meet the one who will show you they care enough to go the extra mile for you. For me, it’s never about money. I want to date someone who thinks enough of me that they WANT to open the door for me, lend me their sweater, pull out my chair. The small things. It’s these gestures that show their effort, and for me, I’m willing to wait for that. I have been single for a really long time. I’ve dated, here and there, however I always knew that I hadn’t met the one. To me, I have no issues with waiting because I deserve true love. So do you.

I really do hope there is more out there though, because this dating culture really sucks.I still have hope that one day I will find a love as genuine and as true as my parents. I know it DOES exist. I hope one day I meet the man that will make an effort to go to extra mile for me, simply because he wants to. I hope I’ll meet the man that I can be honest with and can let my guard down. I hope this for me, and I hope this for all of you. Never give up on that idea, because you are SO worth it.

   xo, 

*Related Post: *My Journey with Self Love
*Related Post: Why I Quit My Full-time Job

*come follow me on instagram at @25thoughts_ for daily updates & inspiration!

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69 Comments

    • January 18, 2019 / 1:09 am

      Totally! Thanks for sharing, Ellie! Heading over to read yours now! xo

  1. January 16, 2019 / 4:35 pm

    I’m with you! I hate dating culture. Along with Tinder also comes a bunch of creeps because sometimes it’s hard to judge that kind of thing when people can easily be fake. I met my current boyfriend on Tinder and I was the first person he met through it. Although it took over a year of being on the app, can’t say I would do it again even if I become single again.

    • January 18, 2019 / 1:10 am

      Absolutely – it’s kind of scary because you just never know what’s real/ true and what’s not! Glad it worked out for you though! xo

  2. January 16, 2019 / 4:38 pm

    The entire dating scene makes me so glad I’m married! My husband and I constantly thank each other because we would HATE having to try to find someone in this current culture.

    • January 18, 2019 / 1:10 am

      Yes, lucky you! It’s definitely not how it used to be- thanks for reading!

  3. January 16, 2019 / 4:57 pm

    I so agree with you that the dating scene is terrible, and “hook up” culture has made it so that people are so quickly dispensable. It’s interesting to see how others perceive modern dating and how such views vary! I don’t think much of older dating norms and chivalry, but that’s just me. I take a totally different approach to things.

    Alex| californiapollution.com

    • January 18, 2019 / 1:10 am

      Totally! What are your thoughts on it? Thanks for reading, Alex. xo

  4. January 16, 2019 / 9:24 pm

    I could’ve written this same post Victoria, because I share the same feelings and thoughts as you. Modern dating is a total mess right now and I refuse to be part of it anymore. I’m just gonna say I’m focusing on myself and not giving any relationship-related topics or debates the time of the day. If you knew me personally you’d know how sickened I am of dating in general and the constant games you’ve gotta play. I’ve got other interests I’d rather more energy and focus to.

    Johnny | Johnny’s Traventures
    https://johnnystraventures.com

    • January 18, 2019 / 1:12 am

      I loooove this Johnny! Nice to hear that men can also relate to these feelings about modern dating! It is always good to put yourself first. Thank you for reading! xo

  5. January 17, 2019 / 2:15 am

    I got a distinct Carrier Bradshaw vibe from this post! I feel like it’s something she may have written if Sex and the City were set in more modern times. I’m not a single lady, but I did spend some time on Tinder before I started dating my current boyfriend. It’s a very weird dating scene out there right now. I didn’t have success there or anywhere else. I’m sure there are some wonderful people on those apps. I know some people meet their significant others this way, but it just didn’t work out for me.

    Jessica – UnplugInitiative.wordpress.com

    • January 18, 2019 / 1:13 am

      Absolutely, I think it’s highly dependent on the person! I also know a few people who have successfully met online! Thanks Jessica, xo

  6. Karen
    January 17, 2019 / 3:25 am

    Dear Victoria,
    My social media coach who is close to your age, we just had this same discussion. You did a great job explaining the dating scene. I so agree with the personal communication being lost due to texting and other forms of social media. That makes me sad. It allows people to hide behind the truth. You are always guessing…not fun.
    Being older in my 50’s…it’s the same thing but you have guys my age only interested in girls 20-35…yuck. Or you have these young guys who want to “hook up” just to be with an older woman and they honestly think that you will go for it because they are “so young and hot”. Lol
    Hmmm…
    Can we just manifest our perfect mate? Ask our higher power to intercede on our part…🙏😇
    Karen…

    • January 18, 2019 / 1:14 am

      KAREN! I love this comment! Thank you for reading! I’m grossed out that men that are older are looking for women in their 20’s… lol. How things have changed. I agree, I’ve got faith that the universe will bring the right one along when the time is right! xo

  7. Miss Jitty
    January 17, 2019 / 6:40 pm

    In all seriousness, I didn’t know what “Netflix & Chill” was for the longest time. Truthfully, my mom told me when someone made a comment about it lol I think online dating is horrendous – from what I have seen at least. Personally, I have never used a dating service. The men I have dated I have met through friends/school or soccer. So while I have never used online dating before…it sounds like a nightmare. The amount of semi-horror stories and downright creepy people out there is enough to terrify someone. On the other hand, I do know several people who online dating has worked out…I guess it all depends!

    • January 18, 2019 / 1:15 am

      HAHA you weren’t missing out by not knowing, girl! I wish I didn’t know! That’s amazing that you have been able to meet men through your friends and other hobbies. I think it really depends on the person. Thanks for reading, girl! xo

  8. January 17, 2019 / 8:27 pm

    I’m 30 going on 31 and I came to a very sudden realization in the last year of my 20s — I hate dating. It never feels organic or like it’s going anywhere. I have dealbreakers that I find are always traits that men I go one dates with have; they constant need to “play a game” is frustrating, as is the need to never “catch feelings.” It’s all exhausting.

    Thanks for sharing! x

    Michelle
    dressingwithstyle-s.com

    • January 18, 2019 / 1:17 am

      I agree, Michelle! The mind games are so tiring! Thanks for reading! xo

  9. January 17, 2019 / 10:50 pm

    I totally agree. Chivalry is not dead. There are men who will fall over the earth to make you smile, so it’s not really worth worrying about the boys who won’t even text you back,

    I swear the scariest part about dating is the not knowing and when you work up all the courage to try and define the relationship, well, you may as well have just stayed in bed.

    Kaitlyn
    kaitlynisabel.com

    • January 18, 2019 / 1:18 am

      Agree, Kaitlyn! Thank gosh there are good ones out there, right? Just much harder to find, haha. Thank you for reading! xo

  10. Nicole B.
    January 18, 2019 / 2:37 am

    I met my current husband online, gosh, 14 years ago now…if I’m doing my math right! At the time I still had a “dating” mindset, but had trouble finding anyone who wanted an actual relationship in the bars and dance clubs. It was funny, too, because one of the dating sites suggested my ex-husband as a match for me! Yea, I stopped using that one!

    Great post! Yes, we all deserve the right person to spend the rest of our lives with. Good for you in waiting. I’m sure he’s out there and will show up at just the right time.

    • January 18, 2019 / 10:53 pm

      14 years- wow! CONGRATULATIONS! That’s amazing. I wanna be on the site you used, haha. In all honesty, I think it really differs from person to person. Thank you for your sweet words! xo

  11. January 18, 2019 / 9:08 am

    I’m so glad I’m married, you girls deserve medals for dating nowadays

  12. January 18, 2019 / 3:52 pm

    This is such an eye opening read. I assumed it was this way today – but man, it’s sad! I’m 43 now and married. Dating was amazing for me. Sure there was still drama of course but with no social media and people didn’t really text too much back then it was so much different. I have to believe there are some great guys (and I’m sure there are!) are there but it sounds like mobile phones are social media are definitely to blame. I need to make sure my sons learn the proper rules of social interaction and how to treat a woman. Great read.

    • January 18, 2019 / 10:54 pm

      Yeah, it’s definitely different that’s for sure. I feel like without social media things would be much easier (and more fun!) Thanks for reading! xo

  13. January 18, 2019 / 5:39 pm

    So many of the men and women who come to me for dating and relationship coaching have had experiences very similar to this. They have learned though our sessions to have dating experiences much different than this. I really value your personal experience and the vulnerability it takes to put yourself out there and write this post. It gives me a much deeper understanding of what they’ve experienced and I can see how it will help me to help them even more. Thanks so much!

    • January 18, 2019 / 10:55 pm

      Thank you so much for reading! Glad you found it helpful! 🙂 That’s the reason WHY I want to be vulnerable, so it’s awesome to hear. xo

  14. January 18, 2019 / 6:01 pm

    I am SO happy that I am out of the dating world because it continually gets more and more difficult. I watch teens that I work with trying to navigate it all and I genuinely feel sorry for them. It’s so much more challenging now!
    Britt | http://alternativelyspeaking.ca

    • January 18, 2019 / 10:55 pm

      Absolutely! There are fun times, for sure, but it’s NOT easy! Thanks for reading, Britt xo – Enjoy your weekend!

  15. January 18, 2019 / 7:44 pm

    I totally agree with all this, dating is so different to how it used to be, it’s a little sad to think how different it is. Although you still do get the odd guy that’s still such a gentleman and ‘old fashioned’ in the sense that they’ll buy you flowers or plan special dates ect. I’m glad i’m not in the dating world now, I’m happy in a relationship that i’ve been in for quite a few years now but if I had to go back into the modern dating world now I would panic so much haha.

    Chloe xx
    http://www.chloechats.com

    • January 18, 2019 / 10:56 pm

      Aha so true, Chloe! I love when I meet the good ones! Rare, but wonderful. xo

  16. January 18, 2019 / 7:59 pm

    GIRL! This is what I started my blog about.. dating in this day! It can be sooo frustrating and I am so sorry you are dealing with these pricks. It is so confusing to try to navigate this “is it too soon to text” or “was that too many exclamation points” or “he didn’t txt back for 5 mins so I’m going to wait at least 10 mins to reply”.. oh brother! While my relationship status has changed (keep your head up, there are good ones out there still.. and they will make a point to see you!), I thought I’d send an old blog post your way about the “pen-pal” guy. It’s old, so there aren’t any pinnable images (what was I doing!?) but it’s pretty funny and relatable! https://livebythesunshine.com/the-pen-pal/

    • January 18, 2019 / 10:07 pm

      Hey– me again! Actually just updated that post– and linked to you in it! <3

    • January 18, 2019 / 10:56 pm

      HAHA the “game” is the worst part. I’m so excited to read your post- heading over now. Thanks for sharing! xo

  17. January 18, 2019 / 9:27 pm

    COMPLETELY agree with you!! I am finally dating someone that I (amazingly enough) met through bumble… which fizzled out until my coworker was like OMG I know this guy that you should meet!! And it was the same guy! haha! But he is an old school gentleman and even calls me darling (which I love because I’m actually an old person in a millennial body). He insists on paying and even prays with me. Hope you find your guy soon! It’s exhausting out there.. PS Your blog is beautiful!

    • January 18, 2019 / 10:57 pm

      OMG THIS IS AMAZING, KATIE. That right there is fate at it’s finest! So happy you met him! The Universe works in mysterious ways, huh. I’m waiting for mine, no rush! And thank you so much for your compliment xo

  18. January 18, 2019 / 9:55 pm

    My parents used be like “why don’t you go out a meet a nice guy” because they met in a bar, but today “a nice young man” doesn’t buy you a drink and asks you out, they just want someone to try take home. The whole “we act like a couple but we’re not and don’t get feelings thing” is so common too that it’s hard to find someone who actually wants a comitted relationship (and I’m not shaming people who are into one night stands or friends with benefits it’s just not for me). There are some people out there who still want relationships, and I’m thankful me & my boyfriend found each other

  19. January 18, 2019 / 11:35 pm

    This is SO true! I’m so glad I’m not lost in today’s dating culture, as it’s become so much more complicated with so many potential pitfalls. You’re such a star for handing this! As a mid-20s guy, I’m incredibly lucky to still have old-fashioned parents & grandparents – that is, couples who were committed from their early days as adults & promised each other ‘yes, it’ll be rocky at times, but I’m ready to make this work for both of us’. They always stressed how important it was to stay ‘best friends first and foremost, couples second,’ and ingrained in me the importance of being dependable, honest, a shoulder to cry on, and someone to open up to if need be. To them (and me) that was always more important than just ‘dating’ someone to avoid staying single.
    Love the layout of your blog – it’s really cheerful & easy to navigate!

    • January 19, 2019 / 12:03 am

      Hi Tom, I think it’s amazing that you had such positive role-models, especially in regards to love and relationships. I was also blessed with this kind of a family and I think the positive examples really help to shape our values in this area. It’s nice to know that men, as well as women, struggle in this area. Not NICE to know, but you know what I mean. Its’ interesting to hear it from a mans perspective. Love what you said about being friends first, and I think that is so important as well.

      Thank you for your thoughtful comment! The blog layout took many tries- but finally found a theme on Pipdig that really works well for me.
      xo

      • January 19, 2019 / 12:33 am

        Glad it’s all going well! Totally agree with you about having parents who still trust in old-time values, because relationships like that will endure for so much longer 🙂 Plus actually LIKING your partner for who they are (not just the physical attraction) & enjoying being in around them is a huge part of it too.
        Looking forward to linking to your blog in my upcoming Sunshine Blogger Award. Hope you have a lovely weekend! 😀

      • January 21, 2019 / 4:53 pm

        I’ve linked to your About page in my latest Sunshine Blogger Award. Hopefully it’ll link new bloggers together easier. Let me know if that’s okay with you x

  20. January 19, 2019 / 1:26 pm

    This post was such a spot on example of dating life today. When I was 40 and separated from my husband, I was terrified at how things had changed in the 16 years I had been married. It was so exhausting that I just focused on my children and job and stopped thinking about it. I am one of the lucky ones. 6 years ago I met my fiance (who is quite younger than me) and he is one of the last few gentleman I have met. Opens doors, does dishes, puts on my jacket, carries my purse, etc. You name he does it. The pure essence of the word gentleman.
    Victoria, you are such a lovely lady with such a beautiful presence in the world, I know somewhere there is a gentleman feeling the same way, waiting to meet a woman like you.

    Nancy | Myeverydaychallenges.com

    • January 22, 2019 / 8:22 pm

      Oh, Nancy, thank you so much for your kind words and I’m SO HAPPY that you found the one six years ago! There are good guys out there, for sure. xo

  21. January 19, 2019 / 2:04 pm

    Great post! I’ve never “dated” so to speak. I’ve been with my current boyfriend for 4 years, the one before that for 4 years and before that, online dating wasn’t really a thing. The thought of using dating apps or anything now scares the life out of me haha! But it’s never about money for me either. I’d never expect a man to pay on a first date. I just don’t understand that logic. I’m quite capable of paying for my own dinner. I mean, it’s kind to offer but I wouldn’t accept xxx

    • January 22, 2019 / 8:23 pm

      I hear you, Jenny! It doesn’t make sense for the man to pay anymore, but the gesture is still so sweet. Glad to hear you haven’t had to experience the dating fiasco too much! xo

  22. January 20, 2019 / 1:31 pm

    Oh my goodness this post was a good read!
    Dating now sounds hilariously scary, who knew there were so many unwritten rules?! – Not me! I think I’d be utterly useless!
    You hit the nail on the head when you mentioned how impersonal Tinder is, I’ve never got my head round the concept of just swiping people based on looks!
    I’m very thankful I met my partner back in college and it was the ol’ friends turned into lovers scenario! Much easier!
    My heart goes out to modern day daters!
    Have a wonderful day! X

    • January 22, 2019 / 8:24 pm

      That’s amazing – what an amazing way to have met your partner! That’s the way to do it! xo

  23. January 20, 2019 / 9:01 pm

    I absolutely love this! It couldn’t have been said better to be honest. And there are definitely things we don’t talk about as millennials when we’re dating because it’s against the “social norm” and that makes communication so difficult which makes dating more difficult as well. It sucks that our generation is afraid to keep their thoughts, feelings, and words all consistent instead of just acting and saying how we truly feel!

    • January 22, 2019 / 8:25 pm

      So true, Jasmine. I’m glad to hear you can relate (unfortunately..) Our generation definitely grew up in a different way… xo

  24. January 21, 2019 / 12:24 am

    Great post & as someone who has been single for nearly 18months I totally agree with everything you have said. I tried a few different online dating places but it just really wasn’t for me! Give me meeting a person in a random place over a dating app any day!
    My parents also give me a great example of true love and commitment – so I do am holding out for this. As you say we are so worth it!! 😉
    Helen | http://www.helensjourney.com

  25. January 22, 2019 / 4:36 pm

    Reading this made me glad I don’t date anymore, it’s way too complicated. If I did though, I’d always pay…

    • January 22, 2019 / 8:26 pm

      Your a very sweet man- the offer is nice. I’m glad you don’t have to go through it, easier! xo

  26. January 22, 2019 / 7:31 pm

    This was an amazing post I’d actually want to share with friends. I got married young and have been out of the dating game for a while. Reading your post opens my eyes to how difficult it must be to date! I loved your post. xoxo

  27. January 23, 2019 / 4:36 am

    Are we twins are something? I agree with you on everything esp about the online dating part. It’s so common to a point where it seems like people just want to hook up and not start relationships. Sometimes I feel isolated having this mindset especially in college because everyone does Tinder (it feels unnatural) to me. No one like the old-fashion romantic gestures which is really sad

    • January 23, 2019 / 7:14 pm

      RIGHT? It’s totally hook up culture right now. I’m proud of you being in college and still sticking with how you truly feel. Keep it up. You’re going to meet QUALITY men this way. xo

  28. January 23, 2019 / 4:39 am

    I love this post because I’m currently going through the exact same trauma of dating again after about 4 years of being out of the game. I’m only 23 but I am shocked at how things have changed over the years because I’ve always been old school when it comes to dating and relationships and it’s just gotten so much harder to find someone I’m physically attracted to who also carries the same mindset on love as I do. It’s tiring but I also get a kick out of looking for the right one wherever I can (even online 😬)

    Thank you for this post!

    • January 23, 2019 / 7:15 pm

      100% true! So proud of you that at just 23 years old you are still sticking to old-school techniques when it comes to dating. It’s more authentic this way. In my opinion. Glad you enjoyed xo

  29. February 6, 2019 / 2:44 am

    I agree about it being such a shallow dating world these days. That being said, I did end up meeting my husband on Tinder (we were both in our early 30’s), so I do think there are some happy endings from online dating 🙂

    • February 8, 2019 / 8:05 pm

      Yay that’s amazing, congratulations! Yes, I agree 100%. I know some couples who met online who are also so happy together, so it’s definitely possible!

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