Hey Greenville. We know the pandemic has affected local businesses and the mental health of adults + kids alike. But how about your love life? Some couples I know who have been stuck inside together for months are wondering if their relationship will survive the pandemic, and many of my single friends see their love life as being on indefinite hold.
Just a few weeks ago, popular dating site Match.com — parent company of Tinder — for example, reported soaring stocks + profits and larger-than-anticipated growth during the pandemic, indicating that despite quarantine, mask mandates, social distancing, and COVID-19 testing + status, folks are still looking for love.
And while some singles have found greater opportunities for l’amour from the pandemic, others report that trying to build a relationship while reducing human contact is challenging. Those challenges are arguably even harder for older singles, who are more susceptible to COVID-19 and have to navigate the potential risk of severe health complications — including death — if they contract it.
All this info really brought out my inner Carrie Bradshaw (minus the killer heels, though, since I’m currently working from home in my sweatpants), meaning I can’t help but wonder: has the pandemic affected your love life, and if so, in what ways? And since we unfortunately can’t meet up and discuss it over coffee or cosmopolitans, I’ll need y’all to fill me in using this questionnaire, where I inquire about things like whether or not you daters are meeting strangers and what precautions (if any) you’re taking to keep you and your date(s) safe? I can’t wait to hear all about it.
From dating apps and socially distant meetups to the pros and cons of online dating, here are some of the answers we received:
“Online dating that has led to picnics and having a dinner or two in the car. I found my person during all this mess and a pandemic won’t stop love.”
“Doing early meetups over FaceTime. Then if it’s serious enough to meet up in person, still stay 6 feet apart and wear masks. Seems dumb but the desire for love doesn’t mean more than the safety my loved ones need from me!”
“Dating, yes. Strangers, no. I prefer to date on hiking trails to stay in outdoor space (which is tough in 95 degree heat!)”
“I am a widower in the vulnerable age group. Pretty lonely most of the time.”
“Standard mask and 6 ft. separation where required….you should hit up Karina who operates the Greenville Upstate Singles Group. She has (recently and compliantly) been hosting events for folks to meet in person! Speed dating, karaoke, hiking, Jack and Dianes, tubing…all sorts of activities for singles to meet the old fashioned way!”
“For first dates now I suggest that we get ice cream downtown and walk along Main Street and Falls Park to maintain some space.”
“I met a neighbor at the pool. We spent time together outdoors at a safe distance and have slowly become more comfortable. He is a healthcare worker, so he has been tested and is regularly tested for COVID-19. I am taking precautions otherwise to limit contact with strangers…”
“My daughter lives in Chicago and has been going on biking dates to meet and get to know the guys she might be interested in. No contact, fresh air – and no money spent on drinks or dinner!”
“I’m in a high risk group (60+) and just moved here 2 months prior to the pandemic, so I know very few people. I am not dating, not on sites, just don’t have the emotional energy to dedicate to trying to start a new relationship right now.”
Thanks for giving us a glimpse into your love life, Greenville. While most of you lamented the challenges online dating and the pandemic have brought about, others of you have actually found love, more quality time together, and more opportunities for connection. Hang in there.