An Aging Millennial’s Guide to Online Dating

If you identify with Drake more than Bieber and remember what it was like to write school papers without the help of Google – or a computer, for that matter –chances are, you’re an aging millennial.

The aging millennial straddles that sweet spot between Gen X and the “younger” millennials. We grew up in the digital age, but the analog era helped form us. We’ve got apps to spare, but we still prefer the tactile experience. This may explain why online dating still feels awkward to so many of us. Sure, we like the easy access to a plethora of potential dates without leaving our couch, but we miss that face-to-face contact. Luckily, there are dating apps, like newly-launched Zepeel, which offers video profiles, video chats and even real-time video meetings, to help us out.

For those aging millennials who are curious about giving this online dating experience a whirl – but are still scared AF – here are some tips to help get you through it:

Stick to one dating app at a time. As an aging millennial, you don’t LOVE to spend all of your time on social media (you have Instagram but you’re not checking it, like, every five seconds), so it may be a good idea to use one dating app at a time. That way you’re not overwhelmed with a ton of notifications – which you hate – or constantly glued to your phone 24/7, which you also loathe (and, yes, you probably are the only generation who still uses the term “24/7”).

You don’t need to tell everyone everything. Dating should always include a bit of mystery, which can be difficult to find in this digital age of information overload. When it comes to completing your profile, as a rule of thumb, write down whatever you’d be comfortable sharing with a stranger at a bar (remember the days when we used to organically meet people IRL? *sigh*).

Be specific with what you’re looking for. If you want to meet someone who remembers when Clueless opened in theatres and/or who prefers Lord of the Rings over Harry Potter, then make sure potential matches know that. If you are looking for someone who digs sarcasm and burritos, write that down too. Better yet, record it! What we love about Zepeel is that it lets your personality shine through in a totally organic way. Just remember – like attracts like, so the more specific you are with what you are looking for, the more likely you will meet someone who fits your criteria. Plus, it’ll help to have things in common to talk about on your first date.

Don’t settle! We all have lonely (and horny) nights. A girl’s gotta do what she’s gotta do sometimes. But on those nights when your vibrator will not do, remember that when it comes to selecting potential dates, you are Beyoncé. Well, maybe not. But you should def treat yourself like a queen. Meaning: their profile should stand out to you. You should be able to picture having an amazing convo with them. Not just a “You’re cute, I’m cute” and cue the crickets. You should feel like you could be friends with this person because you get legit good vibes from them. Don’t go for the guy/girl just because they are messaging you like crazy. Go for the one who gives you butterflies.

Meet in person ASAP. The sooner you meet in person, the sooner you will know whether you have something worth exploring between the two of you. It’s super easy to get caught up with messaging someone (who doesn’t love attention from a new crush?), but if it’s not going to go anywhere in real life, then what’s the point? And remember to ALWAYS meet up in a public place. If someone’s legit, he/she won’t mind you preferring to meet at a coffee house rather than their parents’ basement. Also, remember that if you’re bored out of your tree, it’s completely okay to leave the date. You can make up some lame excuses, like how you have to feed your cat/ferret/plant, or you can be completely honest and tell them you’re not feeling it. Either way, remember: you don’t owe them shit.

Don’t get discouraged. You’re going to have nights when you’re endlessly scrolling or swiping. No one’s going to be hot enough, smart enough, or spell well enough for your tastes. That’s totally normal. If you need to take a break from online dating, that’s okay. If you need to, disable your account for a period of time. Do you, bb. Always.

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