At the tender age of 18, many of our grandparents, or even parents were saying "I do."
When I was 18, I was throwing up out of my bedroom window at the mere thought of being married so young...and from the Feijoa 42 Below vodka I knocked back the night before.
With the advance of technology, dating apps, and social media, the world of modern dating is prompting us to neglect the traditional dating methods once determined by our ancestors.
Our oldies didn't need all this BS to meet the loves of their lives, and some 60-70 years later a lot of them are still happily married to their best friend.
Why is no one picking up the phone and calling anymore? Why are we talking to people online for weeks and weeks before actually meeting up? It's all a mess.
Maybe we've gotten fussier, maybe there's more judgement, maybe swiping right (or left for that matter) on tinder is way too fun to give up, or maybe we just don't know what the hell we're looking for.
All these dating apps are great in a sense that they allow you to connect with people you never would have otherwise, but they are also pretty warped.
Tinder is quite literally just an online human op shopping platform. You're provided with some very basic preferences to chose from (e.g. age range, gender, and distance), but you have absolutely no way of filtering out the duds before they appear on your screen (shirtless, gym mirror selfies, dead pigs lugged over backs, etc). You sift through all the used goods until you find something you'd maybe like to try on. Probably the most brutal and shallow thing to ever be created.
You are literally going off your initial impression of how someone looks in their main photo, which is usually going to be the best pic they have ever taken (probably a selfie). It's all down hill from here, no one looks as good in real life as they do on tinder. That filter will not walk around with them in real life.
Then there's ya tinder bio. If you're lucky enough for your potential suitor to get to the end of your wee photo montage, they'll scroll down in the hope of finding out more. Here is where the real pressure is. How do you seem interesting, but not desperate? Fun, but not slutty? Smart, but not arrogant? You probably can't. Spelling and grammar is also key here. Some swipers are extremely cut throat. If you don't know the difference between there and their, you could be in trouble. Yikes.
Then you've got the extremely bizarre, left field apps like 'Hater'. This app literally gives you the opportunity to bond over mutual hates. Um, what?!
Hate mornings, Donald Trump, and people chewing with their mouths open? Me too. Let's grab a coffee, sounds like we'd be a great match.
If you do actually get to the first date stage after talking to someone on these apps, then Tēnā koe, You've taken the first step.
With the power of online stalking, before you've even agreed to the date, the person likely already knows as much about you as you know about you. Why even answer any questions? They probably already know who your friends are, what you ate for lunch last Thursday, your credit card details (let's hope not), and the name of your deceased turtle. RIP.
Our whole lives are online. You may have forgotten about that stripping gig you did that one time, but the internet hasn't.
Technology can be a biarch like that. Our predecessors didn't have to worry about the video of them dancing to Taylor Swift's You Belong With Me getting shared further and faster than you can say Harry Styles.
The daters of the universe these days can also just be down right mean.
Decided you don't like them anymore? Did they take their socks off and you realised they hadn't chopped their toenails for some six months? What are you going to do!?
Here the term 'ghosting' comes to mind. Meaning if you get cold feet or change your mind about your not so potential suitor, you just simply stop talking to them and go full cold turkey. A cowards way out really - leaving the poor person to ponder all sorts of circumstances as to why communication has ceased.
"Maybe they're just really busy."
"Could have lost my number."
"...Perhaps they died!?"
It's all a bit cruel.
Then we have the term 'catfished' - referring to being taken for a complete ride by an imposter pretending to be something or someone their not. It's hard to believe that this actually happens, but it does, and these people are plain evil and need help.
If someone's online profile looks too good to be true - then it probably is. Stalk the sh** out them, FaceTime them, drive by their house, ask to see their birth certificate, get weird.
Don't actually. But be careful.
The wise ones before us had the opportunity to make their own judgement in person about their love interest(s). It wasn't based on how hot their gram is or how quick they open and reply to a Snapchat.
Things just seemed to be so simple and black and white back then.
With divorce rates on the rise, It's a question whether the online dating world is part to blame for this. With an abundance of 'hot singles near you' at your finger tips, you can see why the temptation to disregard a troubled marriage might not be the most consequential option.
What happened to for better or worse? I'm all for people choosing the path that makes them happy, as that is the end all be all. But isn't it sad that marriage isn't so permanent to some people these days?
I know Tinder can be great for those looking for an initial ego boost or for "a little bit of fun", and I'm also aware that there are actually a lot of online dating success stories out there.
In the next few decades the "we met online" yarns are going to start completely dominating the wedding scene. The ones who met organically will be the strange, head turning ones.
For ya'll looking for those initial face-to-face traditional connections and lessening the chances of getting catfished, maybe we should start doing things the old fashioned way and try to be less online based. It worked back then, so why can't it now?
Nothing is as valuable as face-to-face communication. Make the effort to go out of your way to talk to someone - and I don't mean when you're as pissed as a chook at 5am outside the bakery devouring a butter chicky pie.
Be confident and show some real life enthusiasm, even if it's at a gym or a pub. If you get rejected or find out they are taken, sulk about it for 30 seconds, and then get over it. Don't let it stop you from ever doing it again. You do you, boo.
A guy approaching a female in person (or vise versa) is far more flattering than an online "wuu2" or an inappropriate 'giphy' while you're sitting at home in your fatpants.
Keep those eggplant emojis at bay, boys.
If all else fails, perhaps we had better start compiling a list of things we dislike. I think the 'Hater' app is really going to take off.
(Image via Pinterest)