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March 2014

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Ladies, is our independence what is keeping us single?

A former boyfriend of mine once said that equality between men and women will never exist. I asked him for clarification and his response was to tell me an Indian proverb that described the ideal woman. She had breasts like mangoes, hands as delicate as a lotus flower and hips that moved like chariot wheels. Where was the part about her personality and her mind, I’d asked. He laughed. It didn’t matter, he said, because men were visual.

At first, I was offended. Did a woman’s self worth depend on a man’s desires? It took me a while, but recently I think I know what he was saying, and perhaps I might agree with him.

I’ve been dating for longer than I care to admit. I’ve never married because I just haven’t found that match yet. So over the years, being single has taught me to be independent in order to survive and be successful. Ironically, some of my close friends say that my formula for survival will keep me flying solo for a long time.

I’ve watched and coached many girlfriends through relationships. I’ve stood by their side and watched them cry and talk of disrespect, hurt feelings and in most cases, not so nice behaviour from their boyfriends.

My advice never wavered – be strong, be independent, value who you are. I am starting to realize that this might not be the best advice that will allow their men to stick around.

Many women love the idea of being independent. They adore the notion of evenings out with the girls and the feeling of empowerment it brings when they pick up the cheque for their own gourmet dinner. They didn’t have to convince a guy to get dressed up and spend an evening in a dim lit restaurant, eating three bites of an overpriced dinner that cost as much as a ticket to the Leafs game. Nope, their girlfriends need no convincing why a night in Yorkville is a pleasant way to spend a Saturday night.

But I’ve watched as the same girlfriends jump when their phone rings, race to the bathroom and return only to pay their bill and run out with an excuse that ‘something came up’. Oh some will be honest and eagerly blurt that their guy has called and wants to see them. He beckons and they answer. The Leafs game was over.

I’ve also watched women’s eyes flick back and forth to their phones in hopes that the text message light will appear and a message will arrive from a suitor. Once the ring sounds, a fork is dropped, phone is in hand and a response is immediately texted.

The men know. They can tell that the answer has come back within seconds of the question delivered and they realize the power they still hold. Some will go as far as to ask for a date, at the very last minute because they know they will get their way.

This is not new. In the days before cell phones became a common accessory next to our lipstick, I had many friends sit home on a Saturday night, phone beside them as they wait for their guy — just in case he was free. Technology has made it more convenient and makes them more accessible. They can go out for dinner and if he calls and it’s not a problem to swing by his place once their plate is clean.

Personally, I never do any of the above. Sure, I’ve felt anxious when waiting for a guy to call. Yes, I’ve let him consume my thoughts. But I rarely accept last minute dates and I never answer text messages while at dinner. In fact, if he calls, I don’t pick up if I’m with friends. I’m busy and it would just be rude. I’m an independent lady after all.

But at the end of the day, I’m not married. All of the women who’ve dumped their girlfriends for men are still with the men today.  So it works!

So yes, perhaps my former flame was correct. Equality between the sexes might be a novel concept, but is it realistic? Perhaps women striving for the same independence men have enjoyed for centuries will have to stop and think about this choice that comes with the possibility of being alone.

 

Follow Priya on Twitter at @Priya_Ramsingh.

Follow Women’s Post on Twitter at @WomensPost.

 

Big Girl In A Skinny World

As a woman who has struggled with weight loss for 32 years, I know what being emotionally tied to your weight and size is all about. I know what it’s like to be out of breath after one or two flights of stairs or to be judged based on your looks. I also know what it’s like to be desperate for a change.

I grew up on my mother’s delicious and famous Georgian food. The food was endless and always high in calories. Wasting was not a word that was allowed in our vocabulary and we were constantly urged to “eat, eat.” Weight has always been a struggle for me, not only because I am a food-a-holic, but because I also happen to suffer from Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS). One complication of PCOS is an imbalance in blood-sugar levels, which happens to also be a major factor in weight gain, weight fluctuation and difficulty losing weight.

As an adult, at 5’1 and 215 pounds, I qualified as obese. I was ashamed of my size and my habits. I tried to hide the fear I had of what my future would be like if I didn’t change my ways. Growing up, I was always the plump girl with the great personality, but for once I wanted how I looked on the outside to reflect the beautiful woman I was on the inside.

Eventually I realized that if I didn’t look out for my own health, no one would.

I tried a countless number of weight loss programs and exercise programs, and consulted several dieticians – nothing lasted. It was frustrating wanting something so badly, but constantly feeling like your best wasn’t good enough.

Weight loss is difficult. It’s not just about changing your diet but about changing your lifestyle. It’s many calculated decisions throughout the day for your whole life.

About a year ago, I started working as the clinic manager at a physiotherapy clinic. We were holding our first open house, working hard to put it together and promote it. All the practitioners were there to answer questions and offer free consultations, and I was there greeting potential clients and offering them additional information. It was a success and we were thrilled. Then I found out that during the open house one of the patrons had approached the owner to tell him that because I was overweight, I was a bad representation of the clinic. He suggested that perhaps my position shouldn’t be as public.

I was devastated. I was angry that he would dare to judge me without knowing anything about my skills and capabilities. On the other hand, what kind of an example was I setting for our patients when I hadn’t been successful with my own weight loss? As much as it hurt, I knew this stranger had a point and I made a promise to myself that this was the year I was going to take control of my weight. I started by meeting with a naturopathic doctor so that she could do a full assessment and set up a treatment plan for me.

I wanted to be healthier, but I also wanted to be a role model and to prove to myself that I could achieve my goals. With the help of my doctor I was able to lose 60 pounds, tackle my food sensitivities, increase my endurance, and reduce my BMI by more than 15%.

Today, seven months later, I weigh 158 pounds and am 13 pounds away from my goal weight. I work out five times a week. My friends tell me that I seem at peace with myself and at ease with my body. They say that my outside finally matches what my inside always was.

WATCH: Harvard students don’t have a clue about the capital of Canada

Finally some proof that those Ivy League folks aren’t all geniuses.

The Harvard Crimson’s roving reporter took to the campus greenspace to ask students what the capital of Canada is and the results are, well, not great. You’d think since Harvard alum Michael Ignatieff tried his hand at politics here they might have a better clue.

Check out the video and let us know what you think, should our American neighbours know where the Prime Minister hangs out?

 

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HEALTH: Counting calories out (Part 1)

I remember loving math back in high school. It was so satisfying to solve a math problem: all the numbers in agreement with nothing left to account for. It was so tidy. When I first heard “1 pound of fat equals 3,500 calories,” I had that same feeling. If I wanted to lose weight I could simply track all the calories I ate versus the calories I burned and make sure I made a 3,500 deficit over a week or so. I loved to exercise so I thought it would be a breeze. How wrong I was.

Current science is putting the final nail in the coffin of what we can now call the “3,500 calorie myth”. As it turns out, losing weight is much more complex than eating less and exercising more. I learned this the hard way during my university days when I was surviving on tofu salads and living at the gym. There is a laundry list of reasons; I’m going to briefly go over couple of major ones.

Looking only at the number of calories ignores the types of calories you’re taking in. Fat, protein and carbohydrate have very different effects on your hormones and metabolism. Fat and protein raise your insulin levels only minimally; large amounts of carbohydrate cause it to skyrocket. This is problematic because insulin is a hormone that tells your body to store fat rather than burn it. Eating a diet that’s low in calories but high in carbohydrates could lead to a conspicuous lack of weight loss… or weight gain. It’s tricky because many seemingly healthy foods are heavy in carbohydrates: breads (even whole grain), rice (even brown) and potatoes (even if they’re not in the form of french fries).

Protein also has much more of a thermogenic effect on your body. That means it requires extra energy to digest it and that energy is lost as heat. A gram of protein has about 4 calories; however, not all 4 calories “count”. Neither fat nor carbohydrate have this effect which is part of the reason why a diet that’s rich in protein is typically more successful in weight loss.

To be clear, these are only a couple of reasons – roughly sketched out – that should plant a serious seed of doubt in the minds of calorie counters. I’m not saying that calories don’t matter at all but I think that their importance is definitely secondary to the kinds of calories you eat. Next month I’ll look at how exercising more doesn’t necessarily lead to weight loss.

What do you think? Is sticking to a low-calories diet necessary for weight loss? Leave your comments below!

WATCH: What if ‘heterophobia’ was a real thing?

Filmmaker Kim Rocco Shields and actress Lexi DiBenedetto have flipped the script on the traditional coming out story with the short film “Love Is All You Need?”

In an attempt to show homophobes just how hard it can be for gay people to face adversity from bigots in their lives she has created a parallel universe where being gay is the norm and a girl coming to terms with her (hetero) sexuality is the one who faces sneers from friends, tears from parents, and vicious attacks from bullies.

This short film is stunning in its depiction of the horrors that gay kids can experience and the depression and isolation that can be brought on by bullying and intolerance.

Dedicated to “any child who has ever felt such darkness due to others’ hatred and misunderstanding,” this film is sure to resonate with anyone who has ever felt excluded and shine a light on the very real and serious pain experienced by many gay teens coming to terms with who they are.

For anyone who has ever wondered why gay kids need love, support and acceptance, this short film is a must-see.

Lift weight to lose weight

Fact: Most women want to lose fat and those who don’t say it outright say that they want to get “toned.” If you’re reading this right now, you’re probably one of them.

I’ve spent over 10 years in the fitness industry and I’ve watched women try to reach this goal doing all the wrong things in the gym, all the while avoiding the one thing that could really make it happen: lifting weights.

You might worry that lifting weights will cause you to “bulk up.” Don’t. Women’s hormones make this almost impossible without incredible effort going into planning workouts and nutrition. Lifting weights two to three times a week will help you lose that bit of flab hanging over your pants faster than an hour on the elliptical every day.

Why? There are a few reasons. I was recently at a course in which the instructor compared doing cardio in order to lose fat to “working for minimum wage.” Rather than playing a numbers game and trying to burn off more calories than you eat on a piece of cardio equipment (elliptical, bike, treadmill, etc.), why not build a body that burns more calories all of the time? Muscle is metabolically active tissue; fat just takes up space. In addition, muscle helps regulate the hormonal response to food every single time you take a bite so it’s less likely that you’ll store extra calories as fat. And don’t forget: muscle is firm and gives your body a sculpted appearance, but there’s one more piece to the puzzle.

To build muscle, you have to work with weight that is appropriately challenging. Two- and three-pound dumbbells don’t cut it for most exercises. Use weights that require a degree of exertion and concentration throughout the set and you’re on your way there.

 

Online dating: It’s here to stay, we might as well enjoy it

DerekTheClown entered my apartment yelling as I greeted him.  “Tower!” He screamed, apparently about the high-rise I live in with my parents, who were, mercifully, not there.  He brushed past me to dump his six pack of Red Cap on my kitchen counter and proceeded to go through my closet looking for second hand finds.  He selected a black and white Urban Outfitters dress, whipped off all his clothes and shimmied it over his shoulders; he looked like Fred Flintstone.  “I love you,” he said, then he kissed me, hard.

Derek looked exactly like he did in his photos – like the most beautiful and crazy person I had ever seen.  He had wildly long hair with a beard to match, sharp blue eyes and the tanned skin of a construction worker; I had to clench my jaw to keep from gawking at his physical attractiveness.  Clearly I had gotten lucky.  Derek’s photos are what initially led me to message him, as they painted a pretty accurate picture of his perfect physique and weird lifestyle.  Among them were a picture of his hairy face taken in a dirty bathroom mirror and another of him jumping over a fire wearing a loincloth.  I continue to hear horror stories from friends who have been on dates with people whose photos are a total misrepresentation or several years old.  “Yay!”, I remember thinking.

Clearly, I’m a bit of a risk-taker when it comes to online dating, and I am (or was) more than willing to invite strangers to my house for weird drunk/naked dance parties in an effort to find love.  But really, online dating is for mentally healthy people too.

The origins of online dating depend on who you talk to; there have been various iterations and attempts to match total strangers using computer algorithms, video interviews, or phone chats since these technologies have been taken on by the sad, lonely and entrepreneurial.  But none have come as close in popularity and user count as the online dating behemoths of today like Match.com, started in 1995, now even more gargantuan thank to buyouts of smaller competitors.

Now operating in 24 countries with millions of users, Match.com is likely the first place many people go when seeking out an online dating site; its net worth is estimated in the billions.  Definitely geared towards the mainstream, Match.com is successful in being everything to everyone.  Though it’s feels a little clunky, it feels like a deliberate demonstration that online dating is no longer cutting edge – perfectly suitable to you and your suburban house and Acer computer.

Of course, all dating sites, whether they have millions of users or just a small slice of the market pie, have a certain flavour and vibe.  Colloquially, eHarmony is for old farts that want to find true love, while AshleyMadison is for people that want to cheat on their wives with someone with a name like Ashley Madison, though they’ll probably end up screwing someone named Nancy who also drives a minivan.  There are the religious sites, like ChristianMingle and JDate which are also used by the secular-minded looking for stability (with the former) or wealth (the latter).  Then there are the free sites, the most popular being PlentyOfFish and OKCupid, which are both basically a sea of horny hipsters and thugs who live at home.

The differences between these dating sites are really reflective of what their creators were trying to accomplish –  eHarmony was founded with an eye towards lowering the divorce rate, so to sign up you are forced to answer an hours worth of personality questionnaires and can only view the profiles of people with whom you are compatible.  You also have to be pretty financially committed to finding romantic harmony, with a one month subscription running at about $60 a month with discounts if you sign up for longer.  OKCupid on the other hand was started by a crew of Harvard mathematicians and is thus focused on getting their users to answer questions of varying predictive value.  For example, answering yes to “Do you like the taste of beer” is highly predictive of whether someone will have sex on the first date.  Ultimately though, all of these sites are faced with the same problem: how to facilitate meetings between strangers.

I first heard about internet dating in a socially acceptable context back in 2011 when a good friend of mine introduced me to OKCupid.  She was using it to reach out to a demographic that was new to her – men.  Before her introduction I pretty much thought internet dating was for sad sacks looking “the one” because they were too weird for the real world, like WOWers, people with facial deformities, Asperger’s, or my Grade 12 World History teacher who unfortunately resembled a human mole, who I found on LavaLife.  When I first signed up and carefully created/curated my profile, it was like I had just discovered Facebook.  I was struck by the sheer number of “normal” people out there with pets and mothers and jobs who were waiting for me to click onto their profiles or send them a stupid message.  I was immediately hooked and began going on date after date after date – sometimes more than once in a night.

Of course, online dating isn’t all fun and fucks, sometimes people get raped and murdered.  Carole Markin famously sued Match.com to begin doing background checks on its users after she was brutally raped by a registered sex offender on their second date.  Even more notorious, the so-called Craigslist Killer (aka medical student Philip Markoff) was accused of three armed robberies and a murder, all of the victims reportedly having made contact with him via Craigslist personal ads.  What is clear about these terrible scenarios however is that they could have occurred in the context of “regular” dating too.  Just like in the non-virtual world, online dating requires some reliance on gut-feelings and best practices.  It’s probably not a good idea to go home with a stranger or invite them over for a first date.  In practice though, I have a hard time taking my own advice.

After Derek was settled into my dress and couch we drank a ton of beer, listened to music, made out and chatted a little bit.  This date was an after party for both of us, as he was coming from a concert and I had just been out on another date.  At some point we had to sleep so we took to my tiny tower-sized twin bed and cuddled until we drifted off.  The next day we explored Scarborough, shopping for thrift clothing and jewelry, talked about getting married and ate at Subway – Derek loved Subway, I think ironically but maybe not.  I found his stash of approximately 20 parking tickets.  Derek parked where he wanted to.  In hindsight I was totally falling for him but I kept it together reasonably well that first 24 hours and avoided acting like an obsessive teenager

I had promised that first date from the previous night that I would see him again, so later in the day I made up some story about a dinner party I had to go to and got Derek to drive me to his house.  (I literally will always wonder if this had karmic implications on the trajectory of my relationship with Derek, but more on that later.)  We tongued each other goodbye and he honked several times as I made my way up to the door of this other guy’s basement apartment.  At that point I knew I couldn’t give less than one shit about other dude and was excited for when I could see Derek again.

Derek and I dated for a whirlwind seven weeks of trips to Toronto Island, tours of his hometown, too-hip concerts and countless tall-cans of Old Milwaukee.  Finally, he dumped me, leaving me a total emotional mess.

Ultimately my experience with Derek taught me that it is actually possible to find love on the internet.  Though it didn’t work out between us, finding Derek on OKCupid refined my tastes, raised my standards and exposed me to one of the very best people in the world.  I am convinced that there is more of the same out there.  While I sometimes get frustrated after a few hours of progressive drunken but still boring conversation, I find some shallow comfort in the fact that there is always going to be another internet man rating me 5 stars.

RELATIONSHIPS: Reconnecting with your childhood crush

How much changes after 35 years — and how much stays the same?

I never forgot my childhood crush.  Over the years through dead-end relationships and dating disasters, I would go back to that comforting place in grade four and wonder about the cute boy who captured my attention and still held a special place in my memory.

The fantasy of reconnecting years later often presented itself in my mind. What was he doing now? Would he remember me?

Truthfully, I wasn’t even sure that we wouldn’t pass each other on the street and feel a twinge of familiarity but just keep walking.  After all, grade four kids are only nine years old. How much connecting could we really do at that age, I thought.

But suddenly, there was a chance encounter at Tim Horton’s with my grade four teacher. There she was, timeless and preserved as if it were still 1977. As I said hello, the memories came flooding back to me and I immediately went home to fish out the class photo that was carefully protected behind a plastic sheet in an ancient photo album. My crush was as cute as ever, as he stood posing with the group.  It was perfect for a Facebook post.

Although we weren’t children of technology, many of us born in the late 60s have adopted the habit of sitting behind a computer or phone to connect with our past. Many of my classmates from elementary school who were on my friend list flooded the photo with comments. Then suddenly, there he was. On someone else’s friend list.

I sent the friend request. Would he remember? Butterflies in my stomach. I attached a little note to ask.

The response was immediate. Are you kidding, he said. Of course I remember you! I always thought about you over the years.

It turned out that he lived in New York City and pictures indicated a lovely family of his own.  He was doing well.

We exchanged the usual promises to meet up one day for a coffee. But we were hundreds of miles apart and we hadn’t talked for 35 years. They were nice thoughts and I filed them away.

One year later, a trip to New York City presented itself. So I contacted my grade four crush. The coffee meeting was possible.  Was he up for it?

Yes indeed. An exchange of cell phone numbers and a promise to touch base was made. Truthfully, I still wasn’t sure it would happen.  But from my hotel room in New York, I sent the text, proposing a time. A response suggested a place – Times Square.  It was confirmed.

I walked through the busy streets of New York City on a cool spring day and suddenly, in the middle of Times Square, there he was – my grade four crush. We stood there for a minute among the hustle of the city and looked at each other and smiled.

Over Starbucks, we talked as if three decades hadn’t passed by. We reminisced about our grade four teacher and classmates, and we discussed his move to another school all too suddenly. He cried, he confessed. He was sad that he would not see me again.

I stared. You did? I asked.

He continued to reveal details of our friendship –details that I didn’t remember. We used to lay stomach down on the carpet side by side and read stories to one another, he recalled. He used to tell his mom about me.

I tried to recall those memories but my own told me that he was the cutest boy in the class and I had a crush on him, as did many of the other girls. 35 years later, I learn that I was the one he was most fond of.  More importantly, I find out that nine year olds can make connections that last a lifetime.

We chatted for the afternoon and he walked me to a street that would take me to my hotel again. We promised to keep in touch and parted ways.

That was over a year ago and we continue to connect on Facebook.  His emails make me smile and he checks up to see how I’m doing from time to time, with offers to talk when life throws a curve ball.

I’m happy that he’s found a love that keeps his heart full. He’s no longer my crush, but a bond that began in elementary school, lasted through decades of distance and came back, familiar and comforting as if we had shared stories on that carpet, in the second floor of that old school building, just a few weeks ago.

 

 

 

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RELATIONSHIPS: The double standard of talking about the future

When men reveal their secrets, I listen carefully. After all, it isn’t everyday that they’re willing to break the code and allow a woman into their mind. So when I found out about the double standard that may actually be responsible for sending men packing early in relationships, I knew it had to be shared.

I found out this tidbit on a first date of all places. We were talking about relationships over dinner. Ok, the fact that we were on a date and talking about past relationships is bad form, I know. But that’s how it usually goes when they fall into the friend category right away.

He’d asked me about my last relationship. The good girl in me said, avoid the topic. The realistic girl said, he’s the friendship guy so it’s ok to get his opinion. Since my breakup was still raw, I was all too eager to spill the details.

The future was responsible for the breakup, I confessed. Apparently I’d talked about the future too much and it put pressure on my former beau. Mr. Friend asked for details so I complied.

It was early on in the relationship, I’d explained. The stage where infatuation was at its peak and new couples, drinking from the same cup of amour, fantasized about being together forever. Could this be it? Could the long, search finally be over?

So when my past boyfriend talked about kids and homes together and trips we could take, I figured it was ok to jump in and reciprocate. Besides, a girlfriend told me, if he wasn’t serious about you, he wouldn’t talk this way! Men don’t say these things so early on unless they were serious. Uh huh. Words of wisdom from a woman’s point of view? Take heed ladies, this is not the case.

But as soon as I joined in the future talk, I saw the eyes widen. I saw the fear rise and I watched my beau turn and duck into the cave. His reason? I was rushing things. It was too much pressure.

I stood there, stunned, running over the conversations in my head. Didn’t he ask me on the second date if I wanted kids? What about the nice houses that he wanted us to look at? And the colours for the rooms…what was that all about?

I poured out my confusion to Mr. Friend and saw his eyes widen and palms rise as he shook them, jazz style, singing, “No no…NEVER talk about the future! Never mention the future to a guy who you just started dating!!”

But, I stammered. I was following his lead! It doesn’t matter, Mr. Friend said. You just don’t do it. Men live for the moment and they say what they feel at the time.

Ohhh, so it’s  a double standard?

Yes, Mr. Friend confessed. It was and it will always be that way. Accept it.

I shared this interesting revelation with my girlfriend. When men talked about the future, they didn’t really mean it. They were living in the moment. Ah ha! The secret revealed!

Weeks after I’d found out the secret, I had a chance to test this theory. The former beau poked his head out of the cave and looked around.  He wanted to live in the moment he said. Uh huh. I agreed. No talk of the future. Ok, I admitted that maybe I did talk about the future and it wouldn’t happen again.

But as time went on, and euphoria set in, the future talk resurfaced. I listened, I smiled and I nodded. I made no plans. I did not reciprocate and I did not build on it. I smiled and I lived in the moment.

My girlfriend, amazed at the theory, tried the tactic with her new boyfriend. When he talked of living together, she smiled and nodded. She said it changed her whole way of thinking because no longer was she that woman who jumped too far ahead in a relationship when men lived in the moment.

No, it’s not fair. In fact, it’s downright annoying! But at the end of the day I realize that it’s not about fair. It’s about understanding the difference between men and women so we can walk though this uneven playing field with grace.

So the next time you have a date with a man and he starts talking paint colours for the bedroom, smile, nod, and change the topic. Never bring it up again until the day you actually move in together. Only then will he be ready to paint together.

 

 

LOVE & TECH: Is Tinder the death of romance in the technological age?

With the rise of instant dating smartphone apps like Tinder is true romance really just one tap and swipe away?

Today’s young professionals have a rabid appetite for social fulfillment. The enticing and fast-paced social applications for today’s cellphones allow people to satisfy their social urges more rapidly than ever, producing a cult-like atmosphere of social media worshipers. As this industry grows, social media developers are continually finding more creative ways to indulge people’s fixation with social efficiency.

The rise of the social-media empire has even conquered the world of dating. Today’s singles have quickly caught on to the benefits of using social media for their Romantic pursuits. These applications offer people a quick, nonchalant way to pursue someone within a relaxed virtual environment. Consequently, social media is enabling society to court others technologically – but to what extent is technology tarnishing the natural dating process?

We are currently experiencing a battle between efficiency and romance. Alas, we have the rise of Tinder, the savior to quench society’ thirst for unabashedly shallow, yet quick routes toward courtship. It epitomizes the death of organic dating. Through this program, one can browse through dozens of local singles, separating desirable candidates from the undesirables. If two individuals are mutually attracted to each other, they are able to converse.  Essentially, this program permits the mass accumulation of potential dates via iPhone; it is a pathetic excuse for romance!

We have essentially become a romantically deactivated society. We are experiencing an epidemic where at least 2 out of 3 people you know have likely been courted via text as opposed to meeting organically through friends or a tasteful piano bar. Tinder is mercilessly plunging our society at hyper-speed into a new era of dating where romantic contenders have been diminished to a cold selection process on a mobile screen. Dating has officially become stale, flat and virtually effortless as technology creates these fast-paced dating platforms.

Nevertheless, this unapologetically superficial, hyper-speed dating style is appropriate for the needs of today’s busy young professionals. Tinder’s efficiency makes it the ideal contemporary dating tool. It is a convenient, yet non-threatening way to pursue others. People are able to protect their egos through this low-risk courtship style.  Therefore, people can feel more emotionally safe because their pursuits appear unintentional and casual; it is easier to toss a message into a virtual vacuum than to create a face-to-face opening line. However, this care-free approach to courtship has soured the vulnerability and beauty of the traditional high-risk dating process. I am not implying that people re-enter a world of classic chivalry with codified ways of offering greetings or lofty proclamations of eternal commitment (society’s dating habits are far too removed from these hyper-romanticized ideals).  But this does not mean today’s 20 and 30 somethings have to live in a romantic wasteland! People should try abandoning their technologically protected realms—their phones screens— and genuinely interact with each other. When courtship is accompanied with anxiety and fear of rejection, the thrill of dating is preserved in its most raw form.  There is a heated sense of risk and sensuality associated with face-to-face courtship .Thus, people need to set aside their feelings of machoism and embrace real romance once again.

As the rise of these speedy dating alternatives continues, the integrity of intimate, face-to-face courtships are relentlessly dying. Social media applications such as Tinder are decaying the spirit of traditional organic courtship. But with the growing starvation for quicker, more compelling ways to socialize through media, technology will continue to address society’s growing demands. Yet, I find it difficult to imagine the next big dating application when society has already seemed to reach he peak of romantic lethargy.

 

 

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