Carrie Bradshaw bumped into Mr. Big on a busy Manhattan street. Claire Standish met Andrew Clark in Saturday morning detention. Rose met Jack on the freaking Titanic.

What’s your story? Is it “I swiped right on Tinder?”

That’s certainly not what I want my love story to be.

Another Valentine’s Day is here and love is in the air. Pandora is selling out, reservations are filling up and the NSFW corner at Spencer’s is empty. All the while I’m stuck here wishing I was a young adult living in the ‘90s.

Once upon a time you could hit the bar or go to a house party. But now the only thing we’re expected to do is pull out our smartphones, download an app and upload our hottest photos. Apps like Tinder, Grindr and Bumble are this generation’s best chances of meeting a significant other — or whatever else floats your boat.

For me, dating seemed so much more appealing back in the days of house phones and before social media. Social media has made people like me compare ourselves to models like Gigi Hadid and aim for an impossible beauty standard. Dating apps show us that we have so many more options and that it’s okay if no one around us is ‘good enough.'

Social interactions in general seem limited to apps and technology. Friends stay in touch through Facebook and Instagram. A text to a good friend on their birthday replaced a phone call. But it’s not the same. To form meaningful bonds we need to interact face to face.

We’ve become removed from our surroundings thanks to technology. Now that apps provide us the chance to meet strangers, we’re less inclined to introduce ourselves to people at bars, parties or in class. There’s always an option B that’s just one click away.

What does it say about our generation if we’re so addicted to meeting people through apps? Let’s be honest, appearance is the largest factor in deciding to date someone on these apps. Personally, I know some of the people I find most attractive — celebrities like Miles Teller — I wouldn’t think twice about swiping left on a dating app because they aren’t objectively attractive. But when you mix in charm, humour and confidence the options become so much wider.

Dating apps have made our generation extremely picky. I know I’m judged when I’m on these apps, but now I worry that I’m judged just as much in person. If someone doesn’t like what they see around them they can rest assured they’ll have hundreds of more options on these apps. Through the ease and comfort of one’s own home you can be your own Cupid.

I know it may seem like an archaic thought, but let’s start to introduce ourselves to people who are standing right in front of us. Let’s build our confidence and put ourselves out there. We might get rejected more, but you never know what is standing right in front of you.

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