1. The world will make you believe that your desire for a relationship is unhealthy – a product of you being unhappy on your own. This often results in you denying your true desires because you think there’s something wrong with wanting someone special (and exclusive) in your life.
2. There’s too much room to ruminate. There’s too much space to wonder what a text, orthe silence between timestamps, or a “like,” could mean.
3. So much of dating right now depends on appearances. You can’t deny that attraction is important – nor can you deny it’s amazing we can date people beyond just who we’re acquainted with in person – but the idea that we may not be giving the loves of our lives a chance because they don’t look the way we assume we prefer is disheartening.
4. You feel like there’s something wrong with you for not preferring to be able to sleep with anyone just for fun as opposed to being exclusive with one person you trust and love.
5. You always feel like you’re yearning for a little more than most people are willing to give.
6. Going on a date (as opposed to “hanging out”) tends to be an exception, not a standard, which is frustrating when it seems like asking people to treat you decently is a taxing ordeal.
7. You kind of have to play a “game.” Transparency tends to push people away at first. Many people are too hung up on what they can’t have (or what they possibly haven’t discovered on Tinder yet) to find your desire for monogamy endearing.
8. It’s not chill to say that you’re looking for a real commitment – and dating in 2016 is defined by “chill” – despite the fact that most people are looking for more than they let on.
9. There are “rules” that people tend to follow (don’t text first twice in a row; posting a photo on Insta makes it official now, etc.) that are confusing and subjective and ultimately mean a lot less than we like to pretend they do.
10. It’s the saddest thing, but it can often feel like the greatest display of commitment is documenting your relationship online (though it’s kind of common knowledge that the less happy you are IRL, the more you want to prove the opposite is true).
11. You develop a complex that your social media presence is making more a statement about who you are than you ever intended for it to – as though all your prospective partner’s friends are looking at your random pictures and making assumptions about who you are and how right you’ll be together.
12. The more we rely on the Internet to date for us, the harder it is to really connect with someone. (Since when was the most romantic thing in the world a phone call, or a night outside drinking and talking without phones?)
13. When people think hookups are the standard (and dates are the exception) everything seems ambiguous at the beginning. You confuse someone’s “chillness” for the same “coldness” that you felt when someone wasn’t into you, and it’s scary.
14. You have so much to give. You know you have so much to give. But saying that is the least chill thing there is – so you’re left to wonder which casual fling will eventually develop into something more.