‘Why I’ve broken up with Tinder’
HI EVERYONE. My name is Alita Brydon and I am a Tinder addict.
For the past four years I have been swiping, chatting, liking and analysing photos of men at the Tiger Temple until just recently I faced the cold, hard truth - I wasn't going to find Mr Right on a dating app.
Escaping the Tinder trap has been a long journey of disappointment, blurry selfies and belly laughs - let me take you through it.
It all started four years ago, in a simple era when we used our index fingers to point at things, not to swipe through men. My sister met a man on a dating app - a surprisingly friendly fellow with a love of music. Sure he seemed strangely preoccupied with the stage musical Les Miserables, but despite this he was a great guy and set the bar for who I thought I could meet online. Online dating was the new frontier and I was ready for love.
On your marks, get set - swipe! I did my hair, took my best selfie (with just a hint of cleavage) and threw myself into the world of Tinder head first.
For the next four years I would spent at least an hour everyday on the hunt for love - approximately 1460 hours in total - the same amount of time it takes to watch every episode of Married at First Sight a whopping 18 times.
I would flick through thousands of men and make a split second judgment on whether someone would make a good husband based on a blurry car selfie or fishing holiday photo. I became a pro at small talk. My conversations followed a simple three step formula - 'What do you do?', 'Where do you live?' and 'What are you looking for?'.
The responses I wrote became so generic it got to the stage that the predictive text on my phone was responsible for most of my online romantic conversations. I wasn't getting any closer to meeting Mr Right, no matter how many matches I gathered.
And boy oh boy - did I talk to a lot of men. I had thousands of hunks, spunks and babely babes in my phone. The names and faces blurred - I found myself going on dates and frantically speed reading through my messages to refresh my memory as to exactly which 'Matt' I was meeting.
As my finger flicked through the faces, I started to play my own little games. My favourite Tinder past time? Suit Store Bingo. I would take a screenshot every time I saw a selfie of a man wearing a suit he had not yet purchased. I believe I have the most extensive collection of Peter Jackson change room selfies in Australia. But as time went by, I found having a database of bachelors in my phone was making my quest for love even more complicated.
The tragic truth is it wasn't just my time that Tinder was burning. My credit card was also getting a good workout. Spending money on Tinder features such as a Gold membership or a Boost is so easy - what if a match with Mr Right is only $3 away? It's like having a pokie machine in your phone, just one more hit and you might win the romantic jackpot. Surely, love is worth an extra three bucks! I was getting deeper and deeper into the Tinder trap.
It was only a few weeks ago I decided I had enough. All of the excitement had been sucked out of dating and in a moment of frustration I deleted Tinder. Now I've broken up with dating apps, I've thrown myself back into single life.
While I haven't gone on a date yet, I'm using my new free time to concentrate on getting fit, learning how to cook and mastering basic Japanese. Or at least that's what I'll do once I finish season three of Gilmore Girls. But don't be fooled - I'm still determined to find Mr Right. There's a funny and sweet man with a love of chicken nuggets out there for me somewhere. Just probably not at the Tiger Temple.