‘Dating’ apps are a breeding ground for misogynists, sexists and sexual predators and we’ve spent far too long normalising it by laughing it off. I am 100% guilty of this and the proof is all over my blog, all you need to do is look back to my first 10 blogs. Reading my page from my first post to now is displays a vast difference and shows my own personal journey of discovery and awakening to how these platforms do nothing but enable abusers and self-entitled morons. At first, as mentioned countless times on here, I was enamoured by the constant streams of attention and affection from men all over the South West. I felt like a kid in a candy store – which is exactly how these apps make it seem. YOU have full control, YOU have the choice to match with who YOU want and most importantly, YOU can unmatch anyone who YOU no longer wish to speak to. What more could a girl possibly want?
This false sense of security is how they lure you in, you are under the impression it’s ‘safe’ as anyone you meet is your choice. Well I can tell you for a fact it is not. Simply unmatching someone is not enough for them to be gone from your life. I have documented, in detail, my own experiences of how unmatching or blocking is not enough. We make jokes about guys ‘sliding into our DMs’ but it’s really no laughing matter. I have had countless unsolicited dick pics – Hell, I even got one this weekend and I’m not even on dating sites?! I’ve had men make numerous attempts to get in contact with me via Instagram DM. ‘What’s the harm in that, they are just being nice?’ you might ask. Well, don’t you think people should know that persistence is not key and that actually, we are entitled to have a choice in who we speak to? There are endless screenshots and memes about men messaging women over and over again and more often than not it turns to some form of harassment. If someone chooses not to reply to you (yes, it’s a choice) then you should learn to leave it and walk away. I have had an experience where one man saw it fit to message me on Instagram (to no avail I might add) then he decided to track down my personal email address to send me a message as I clearly wasn’t seeing his DMs and no woman would ever dare to ignore a man. What kind of person feels the need to invade my personal privacy so much? I have touched on this particular incident in a blog previously which triggered me to delete Tinder once before. At what point did we start teaching people that it’s acceptable behaviour to chase someone until we get what we want?
Other ‘dating’ app nightmares come in the form of abusive messages, unsolicited nudes, stalking, threats of physical and sexual violence, and of course, actual physical and sexual violence. All of which I have encountered thanks to ‘dating’ apps like Tinder and Bumble. Lest we forget I had only been using these apps over a 10 month period. In that time I was lucky enough to have reported 2 men to the police, one for rape and harassment and one for plain and simple harassment. I used to think I was unlucky and that I was of a small minority which faced these issues, but since immersing myself in dating based meme culture I can see that I’m very much in the majority of women. These apps do not protect us from any of this. Being given the option to block or report doesn’t do enough. I blocked and reported the man who raped me, yet countless times I have been shown his face, smiling at me, a constant reminder of how he faced no consequences for his actions. There is no justice in the world of ‘dating’ apps.
**I am purposely using dating in quotation marks as the sole purpose of these apps is no longer to date. ‘You do not what Tinder is for don’t you’ has been sent to me more times by guys than I can even count. We live in a society where hookup culture is applauded and promoted under the guise of calling it ‘dating’ let’s call a spade a spade.**
I have spent hours of my life giving my blog readers and Instagram followers a very raw and honest look into my dating life all for the purposes of education and entertainment, mostly the latter. I always had the motto ‘I can’t change a man so I’m going to educate women’ and I still stand by this point. I am not going to waste my time correcting men and clapping back to their misogynistic and crude remarks. I’m not going to correct ever misuse of a word or every threat because in all honesty, I would have to give up my job just to find the time to fit them all in. I still stand by educating people on ‘dating apps’ but this time I’m taking away the entertainment value. This is a very serious issue that gets bypassed far too often. Women are being verbally abused online by men who feel they are entitled to a response, a date, a fuck. We owe you NOTHING. We are allowed to change our minds about anything we want, just because it inconveniences your plan of trying to get your dick wet doesn’t mean you can hurl abuse at us.
I urge women to leave delete their accounts and remove the apps from your life. Firstly, you are worth more than the approval of some bloke who can’t accept they aren’t the only one you’re talking to whilst they string along 7 girls at a time. Secondly, you are damaging yourself by allowing yourself to repeatedly get hurt and exposing yourself to toxic behaviour. If you are looking to start a genuine relationship then you need to ditch the platforms which promote and encourage casual encounters. People who are in relationships who have single friends, please stop telling them ‘what do you expect’ when they tell you about their bad experiences. We expect to be respected and treated like a human being and not a soft pink hole with a heartbeat. Stop ignoring this behaviour and start changing it!