I’m generally not a high anxiety person when it comes to meeting others, I’m not tooting my own horn but I think I make friends quite easily and connect really well with the opposite sex when given the chance. recently – well since finishing college – I’ve found myself meeting no cool guys to hang out with and ahem…haven’t had sex in almost a year. So I joined tinder on a friends recommendation and I’ve met some nice guys, but for some reason I cannot bring myself to actually go and meet these guys. I’ve already cancelled on two guys to the point where one guy let me reschedule THREE times until the third time I totally stood him up.
I think it’s because I’m not too happy with how I look at the moment and Tinder is (mostly) about shallow connections based on appearance and I’m worried if I meet with a guy I’ll be that story.
Help! How do I get over my nerves about meeting up with someone I met on Tinder 😦
Despite what you may think about the prevalence of online dating, and people meeting through Tinder, you should know that what you are feeling is perfectly normal. Just because I’m a big believer in online dating doesn’t mean that I don’t understand why you would be a bit apprehensive about meeting someone off of Tinder. Meeting a stranger is a situation that would make me wary regardless of how I met them, but meeting a stranger from Tinder would give me even more pause. The thing is, it sounds less like the problem is with who you’d meet and more to do with how you feel about yourself.
I mentioned in my post “Should I try online dating?” some questions you should ask yourself before you want to try online dating. I’m thinking now that I want to expand on one of those questions. I previously said that you have to ask yourself the following question before you start online dating:
- Are you ready to date?
Ready to date means a lot of different things for different people, so let’s get to the root of what I really mean when I say it. Ready to date means that you’re open to dating, can afford to date, are committed to the time it takes to date, and are secure enough in yourself to date, because let’s face it, dating involves taking some knocks to your ego. Would anything be holding you back if you started dating? Maybe it’s self-esteem, self-image, hang-ups around your ex, etc. You are the person who determines if you are ready to date. Not me, or anyone else. You have to ask yourself if you really are ready to date.
It sounds like you’re not ready to date, but I could be wrong.Tinder is about connections based primarily on appearances but sadly, so are all types of dating. Yes, dating sites tend to skew more toward superficial things first, especially Tinder where you are matched solely on your proximity to others and their attraction to you, but keep in mind that everyone you meet who is interested in you romantically is also making a judgment based on your appearance. That judgment is “I find this person physically attractive” or not. If your concern has less to do with how you feel about yourself and more to do with how you think others will treat you because of how you look, I would encourage you to include pictures on your Tinder profile that you feel accurately reflect how you currently look. You mentioned that you’re not happy with how you look “at the moment” so maybe there was a recent change to your appearance. If your pictures don’t reflect that recent change and you’re worried about meeting people who wont be physically attracted to you, make sure your pictures look like the current version of you. It might be a temporary thing, but having current pictures that accurately represent how your body looks will weed out the guys who are looking for a specific body type that maybe you don’t fit into.
If the issue is actually more to do with how you feel about how you look then I would then suggest that you NOT date right now, online or not. It’s perfectly okay to feel unhappy with your body occasionally, or feeling like you want to improve your body, but if you’re truly unhappy with how you look on a very deep level, to the point where you don’t want to meet new people, it means that you need to work on dealing with that issue before you try to date. Some people use dating as a way to meet and connect with people, but others use dating to fill a hole, and I don’t mean sexually. Dating to them is about filling a deficiency in their life. Some people date to fill a need, and sometimes that need is needing to feel attractive. I don’t encourage anyone to date to fill a need, and I wouldn’t suggest you do it either. Date because you want to date. If you’re feeling insecure about how you look, work on your insecurities. Dating to make yourself less insecure isn’t going to work, it’ll only make things worse.
The fact that you’ve cancelled on people multiple times leads me to believe the issue is related to your self-esteem. Two things for you to do in this case: Either love and accept who you are, flaws and all, OR work on your physical appearance until you feel confident enough to date. Wait, did I say two? Well sorry, there is a third option. If either one of those first two options is too difficult, I would encourage you to seek professional help. The root of your problem might be more complex than “I used to have a six-pack now I don’t 😦 “. It seems like your issue is a lot deeper than that, and getting over your issues related to your appearance is going to require a lot more work than forcing yourself to go on Tinder dates.
Then again, maybe I’m way off and you really just need a pep talk. Okay, so here it is. Try to minimize how important any future dates are by remembering that if someone wants to go on a date with you, they’re probably past the point of superficially rejecting you. Worst case scenario they take you out, buy you a drink or two, you don’t click and you part ways. Best case scenario, you meet someone who likes you for you, you find that one hidden gem in a sea of terrible Tinder users, you both hit it off, and you finally break your 1 year abstinence streak.
No matter what you decide, just remember that no matter how you look, you are good enough to date and be loved. The trick is knowing that in your heart. If you don’t know that, you’ve got some work to do, but trust me, you can do it.
Good Luck Out There.