Is Dating Too Accessible?

We live in a world where we don’t need to call people in order to talk to them. We’ve even gone beyond texting too. Now we can Facebook them, gchat with them, Tweet them, email them – you name it. And, we can do it all from our phones.

Of course, this has all stumbled over into dating as well. There are apps where you can meet people when you’re out and about. A lot of dating sites also have apps or give you the ability to check your matches on the go. If all else fails, you can use your phone and actually log in to your account.

In short, everything and everyone is accessible no matter what your goal is.

For the most part, I think this is all fantastic. I mean, I love that I have access to pretty much everything with just my little phone. It makes it easy to go out and do stuff even if I am waiting for an important email or whatever. It’s also super nice when I am traveling to go see my family. The last time, I was away for two weeks. So, it was good that I didn’t have to disconnect from the world but that I also didn’t have to miss out on time with them because I was sitting on a computer.

So, yeah, on the one hand I love it all. But on the other, I think it’s becoming my worst enemy. Sometimes everything is just too accessible. And, I think it’s fueling my impatient self. Actually sometimes I feel borderline obsessed.

I think the issue is that I am getting too used to this instant accessibility thing. I mean, take OkCupid for instance. If you have the app, you get an alert the minute that you have a new message from someone. And, they email you if someone even shows the slightest interest in you. So, no matter where you are, you are able to know exactly what’s happening.

When a guy sends me a message, it’s likely that I will respond rather quickly because that’s just how I am (ask my friends – I respond almost instantly to a text.) And, then it’s likely that he’ll respond back. Then, we start sending messages, back and forth.

It doesn’t sound like it’s that big of a deal but it kind of is. First, I don’t think it’s a good idea to start establishing that kind of pattern with a person you don’t know. You get too used to them and too attached which just isn’t good when you’ve never met.

Second, I find that I am getting too used to this. Then, when a guy doesn’t respond, I am not sure if I am being rejected or if he’s just busy.

And, third, I find that sometimes I feel pressured to respond quickly. I often find myself thinking I can’t wait that long to respond, he’ll think I am not interested. But then I wonder about that fine line between being interested and looking desperate. It’s not a line I want to cross. Ever.

I can remember the days of online dating when it would take a guy a week to respond and it was nothing. But that’s because if someone was away from their computer they couldn’t respond. They could be at work, out with friends, at the store, etc.  And, it was so rare to get an instant response. That was just crazy.

Of course, it’s not just online dating. Everyone you meet has 994 ways to contact them too. So it’s just as easy to want an instant response there too (and to feel like you need to instantly respond).

I think it’s important to remember what it was like once upon a time when people weren’t accessible 24/7. Even though the field has changed, the players are still the same. You’re still dealing with human beings who have a life beyond their phone and internet. I mean, really, expecting someone to instantly respond to you is just as crazy as the idea that you should be sitting at home waiting for the phone to ring.

5 comments on “Is Dating Too Accessible?

  1. Funny, I am the opposite. I never respond quickly to dating communication. I ignore the text message part of online dating sites and never get any momentum going with the email. I find people's instant grat ADD personalities come across rather harshly in online dating. They want you to respond NOW…. I find that too much like a guy contacting an escort. Maybe it's just me, but in this world of immediacy I still appreciate someone who has patience to wait for. Reply. What is that saying… Good things come to those who wait. Great article! Thank you

  2. Oh god…so much yes! this!

    Seriously…yes on the being too familiar…yes on the pressure to respond (though I have the opposite knee jerk reaction and instead of responding PURPOSELY take my sweet ass time in order to appear busy (which in actuality I am…but not too busy to respond to a message lol)…it's all very exhausting lol

    Great post as always Jess!

  3. Thanks ladies! Glad you both like the post! I actually tried that over the weekend I recieved a couple of messages on one of the dating sites I am on. While I read the message immediately, I took a little time to actually respond to it. And, it felt kind of nice and helped things to feel more relaxed. I also think it made me feel less pressured on what to write because I gave it a little time. I think I am going to work harder at waiting a little. Patience is good sometimes.

  4. Oh and just think how this affects The Rules! You're not *supposed* to respond til such-n-such a time, but we all know everyone has access, has already seen the message, and is just waiting around for the right amount of time. Or whatever. For no other reason. But then, like you said, the flip side is communicating so much so fast!

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