What’s It Like Being In A Long-Term Relationship In A World Of Speed Dating

Anxiety – just like pretty much everything else, it fills me with a lot of anxiety being in a long-term relationship in a world of speed dating. First of all, let me tell you that there are so many sides to consider here. It is not the notion of the “grass being greener on the other side” that gives me waking nightmares. It is the almost crippling fear that what if the grass is the greenest here (for me), but what if all the grass dies one day suddenly, out of nowhere? Since pretty much every millennial will vouch for the cons of modern dating (and as many the pros), it isn’t an easy territory to navigate, especially if you’ve been sedentary for a while dating-wise.


Apps like Tinder seem to have made finding companionship much easier, and much murkier as well at the same time. The saying ‘first impressions either make or break you’ is way too literal on dating apps. People may not swipe right based on just looks but they certainly do so when it comes to swiping left – purely for superficial reasons. The very thought instils me with a fear of never finding what I already have ever again. Technically that shouldn’t be a fear I should be allowed to rant about, because it reeks of (romantic) privilege perhaps. But, we are all human beings and we are wired to fear losing what we have, the same way we often end up fearing never finding anything good enough ever. At the end of the day, it never hurts to know that there could be other people who could possibly give you as much love as your SO does, if things go awry. Simultaneously, this thought has the potential to fill you with enormous amounts of guilt in addition to fear too, of course.


But, what if my loving, long-term relationship is suddenly over one day, and I have to fend for myself in the stark, cold world of modern dating all over again? Signing up on these dating sites sounds like setting myself up for failure and constant humiliation more so because my body – one of the first parameters I will be unfortunately judged on – is not the ideal of perfect feminine beauty. My waist isn’t thinner than my chest and hips as it should be, my weight is a few kilos too high, my chins are also one too many, so where does that leave me in the world obsessed beauty queens… beauty queens who only ever exist on the Photoshopped covers of glamorous magazines? Then again, I have heard first-person accounts of how body positive these new spaces can be for people of all sizes. So maybe, I will do just fine on dating sites, except that I don’t want to. I like being in a relationship with my partner, who has the kindest soul of them all.



Ergo, these fears, of course, do not keep me from counting all my blessings for being in a loving, healthy relationship. On the contrary, it has helped me remember how fortunate I have been for once in my life. This fear, in combination with the memories of all the shitty relationships I’ve witnessed from close quarters all my life, has also prevented me from turning into that douche who cannot stop bragging about that one good thing they have in their life at every party ever. While I know being in a relationship has made me happy, I am also aware of the fact that many people don’t want this in their lives. There are many who are happy in their own ways – whether single or dating, whether in monogamous relationships or open, polyamorous situationships. Everyone’s definition of romantic bliss is different, so this isn’t even looking down upon the other side. Ultimately, the fear in my head doesn’t stem from the idea of never getting to experience the other side of the fence either, it is actually about the fear of not knowing what awaits on the other side, if it ever comes to crossing over.

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