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The COVID-19 pandemic has made it harder to engage in social activities since, among other factors, many bars and restaurants have been closed or operating at reduced capacity to reduce the spread of the novel coronavirus. As such, dating has become much tougher. And although online dating might seem like a safer option, meeting up with people you first meet online still carries a risk of transmitting or contracting COVID-19.
That said, some people still want to date, and the pandemic has changed dating for better and for worse. Here’s what dating has looked like during the COVID-19 pandemic.
1. Less small talk
During the COVID-19 pandemic, some people are trying to get to know their new potential partner on a deeper level. Small talk has become less common for singles who are trying to discover whether they are compatible with a new partner. Since many people have been in lockdown, and therefore spending more time with their emotions, some people are more likely to openly discuss their feelings and beliefs to confirm that their potential partner is indeed someone they can spend ample time with at home.
2. Slower-paced dating
The COVID-19 pandemic has prolonged the courtship period for many singles. Although some people may have previously preferred a faster dating style, the pandemic facilitates a slower dating style since meeting up in-person is now much less safe. Additionally, slow-paced dating can lead to a deeper bond.
3. More affordable dates
Since people have quarantined at home and businesses have closed, dating has become more affordable – lockdown combined with fewer spending opportunities means wallet-friendly dating. Some people have additionally become more creative in choosing a date activity: Now, it’s more common to conduct virtual dates through video calls, watch movies at home, go to a park, or even take a quick walk.
4. Easier to make time for partners
Since people have been spending more time at home, dating during the COVID-19 pandemic has brought more opportunities for partners to spend time together. If you or your partner works from home, you can get closer by spending time together as you work.
5. Poor mental health
Although the COVID-19 pandemic can, in some ways, make it easier for you to get closer to a partner, many singles have found dating significantly challenging due to poor mental health. Potential relationships can fail due to partners feeling anxious, stressed, and worn down by financial instability, disease, and death.
6. Some people don’t like virtual dating
Despite the prevalence of online dating during the COVID-19 pandemic, some people still prefer traditional dating. Some people have told stories of going on video dates and having a potential partner act inappropriately since such behavior carries fewer immediate repercussions online. Additionally, online dating can be impersonal and bring an increased risk of being lied to by a potential partner.
7. Hesitation for intimacy
Lastly, some people are more hesitant to be intimate during the COVID-19 pandemic. In fact, some people are entirely avoiding dating in order to protect themselves from contracting and transmitting the virus. Researchers have found that people who feel vulnerable to contracting the COVID-19 virus are less interested in dating.
For some singles, the COVID-19 pandemic has brought unenjoyable dating changes. However, others have discovered how to balance dating while trying to maintain some degree of safety. If you’re single, you only need to do what feels right for you – it’s entirely your choice whether or not to date during a time already full of challenges and uncertainty.