Can You Find Love With Online Dating?

You’ve been online dating for a while now, and it seems there is plenty of fish in the sea — but only a few are worth trying to hook. Does online dating really work? Can you find love with online dating? To help you answer those questions, we’ve looked at what research says about whether or not online dating is a viable way of finding love.

Online Dating in 2021

All of them supposedly elevate your dating experience, allowing for a wide selection of potential dates without the awkwardness of meeting a stranger for the first time only to find out that you’ve got nothing to talk about. The question is whether online dating in 2021 can lead you to long-lasting love. Well, let’s first consider the main pros and cons of online dating.


Optimistic data




You can be strategic about it



Goal misalignment

Susceptible to bias

Mismatched reality


Online Dating Psychology 101

First, let’s not forget that dating apps are built to keep you glued to them for as long as a possible partner. Like any other social networking platform, they tap into the internal reward system that makes us want more and more of the things that give us pleasure. This is why many people have a love-hate relationship with dating apps, constantly deleting them and reinstalling them. There are also many studies on how online dating affects users’ mental health, particularly those with social anxiety, but that’s a topic for another time.

So, can you still do online dating and keep your head level and clear? Well, you could if you follow some tips:

  • Be authentic — presenting yourself in the most realistic light will save you a lot of trouble down the road. At least you’ll know that your future date will be going out with you for you and not for some fake persona that you made up to fish for likes.
  • Be transparent — this means being clear with both yourself and the people you meet on those apps. Decide on why you are online dating, then make sure that you communicate it unambiguously. If you are looking for a serious relationship, be clear about it early on.
  • Have a boundary — we already mentioned that online dating can be addictive, playing on the brain’s pleasure systems. There is nothing wrong with getting some feel-good hormones. Still, too much of them can lead to an actual addiction and subsequent unpleasant withdrawal symptoms. So, have some boundaries with how much you use dating platforms.
  • Work on your communication skills — effective communication is a skill that is rare nowadays but in high demand. By working on your communication skills, you’ll better express your needs and understand your match/date.
  • Keep it cool and patient — if you treat online dating as a marathon rather than a sprint, you might have a better experience with it. You could meet someone from the first swipe or after several months, so don’t rush. Also, keep your cool. The fewer expectations you build, the less chance for disappointment.

Finally, is there a science-backed way to weed out the people that just aren’t a good fit, and especially those with insincere intentions? The world would’ve been a much better place If there was a fail-proof method to do either of these things. Still, there are some things that you can do to level up on your positive experiences with online dating. Every major dating platform has a Resources section where you can read tips on making a better profile and keeping safe on the app. Read them! You can also follow some common-sense advice like:

  • Do not disclose sensitive personal information.
  • Stay alert about questionable things like the other person asking you for money, graphic photos, sensitive personal info, or clicking on suspicious links.
  • Use different photos for your dating app and social media accounts to minimise the chance that someone will snoop around without your permission.
  • It might sound hypocritical after the previous point, but if you can, check up on the social media profiles of your matches to see if their story checks out. Still not a 100% guarantee, though.
  • If it comes to an actual date, set it up in a public place where you’ll feel safe. Better if you also tell someone about your date: where, when, and with whom you are meeting. Stay-safe tip: if you are in a bar, restaurant or a similar venue and you feel threatened, you can ask an employee for “Angela,” a code-word for when you feel in danger. “Ask for Angela’’ is a campaign to help women in vulnerable situations ask for help without exposing themselves. Read more about it here.

With all of the above, what can we conclude about finding love online? The best answer is that you can absolutely find the love of your life on a dating site. Many people have, and many more will do. If you want to be among the people that have found love through online dating, you need to be proactive about it. While you look for the love of your life online, you can feel better about being single by reading about what to do if you are feeling lonely.

Written by Krasimir Ivanov

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