Can Love Be Found On Tinder?

by Jen Girard

My gut reaction is to answer adamantly “No Way!” But then, there’s always that one-in-a-million chance of meeting someone on Tinder that could lead to a long-lasting relationship—although I’m not a betting kind of gal with those kind of odds.

I agree with Eli J. Finkel on one thing in his The New York Times article In Defense of Tinder. That one thing is this: online dating, Tinder included, expands the pool of potential partners. That’s the main reason I recommend using online dating as a way to meet potential partners, but not the only way.

So where I disagree with Finkel is that “a quick and dirty assessment of chemistry” (what I call “instant attraction”) is a good predictor of a long-term match. I know I’m being a kill-joy when it comes to love at first site, but trust me, the opposite is true.

Why is instant attraction or chemistry not reliable? In my previous post, Beware of Instant Attraction, I discussed that when instant attraction occurs, it means you’re acting out a past pattern in your life. It’s that comfortable feeling of being attracted to him and believing he’s your type. Just like that! Everything about him; his looks, his type, his swagger, triggers old familiar feelings that are deeply rooted in you. These feelings or familiarity were imprinted on you from your caregivers early in life. Something about him reminds you of one or both of your caregivers, or at least the feeling you had when you were with them.

If you find a man instantly and extremely attractive in a crazy way, it’s because you are trying to recreate a feeling or familiarity in order to fill a void. You want and need him to love you. In essence, you are recreating your early years when you desperately wanted and needed to be loved and cared for by your caregivers. If you’re like 99 percent of us, you didn’t get the love or care you needed, so you keep trying to get it from your adult relationships.

That instant chemistry or giddiness you feel can often be confused with a panicky or anxious feeling of needing to fill a void or hole. These feelings can get confused with love and connection. The messy part of this is that if you didn’t get the love you needed as a child, then when you recreate the situation again as an adult, you’ll end up with the same results: usually a relationship that doesn’t last or leaves you feeling empty.

This is why basing your love choices solely on instant attraction is risky.

So if you’re looking for love on Tinder, be prepared and know that you won’t have a lot of information to go on besides instant attraction.

What it comes down to is this: How you meet your potential partners doesn’t matter. What does matter is how you go about screening them and determining who is a great long-term fit for you at the end of the date!

Ready to start your journey to love?