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I Stayed On Tinder After Dating A New Guy, And It Took All The Pressure Off

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We all pretty much understand the idea of Tinder and other similar dating apps. You post some pretty pictures of yourself, come up with an interesting and witty bio and obsessively swipe left and right to find a suitor.

For me, I never took these dating apps seriously. I never actually thought I would ever really meet someone, date him and eventually live happily ever after. I'm actually pretty jealous of the people that do. But what I did enjoy about these apps was the endless flirting.

You could really try every trick in your flirt-book as many times as you want. You get to see what works, what doesn't work and get some compliments in return. Even though these men on the other side of my screen were complete strangers and were most likely never going to be an actual part of my life, it felt nice to be able to just flirt, especially when I already had a sort-of-serious relationship on the side.

Some of you might be thinking this seems really deceptive and cruel. You may think that if I was in this almost-relationship, then I shouldn't have been on Tinder or flirting with other people. Not to be rude, but you're wrong.

Just to defend myself a bit more, a) we weren't actually in a relationship, b) I never actually met any of these guys in person and c) it helped me.

So, how did it help me? Well, I'm glad you asked. See, what tends to happen when you're trying to start a relationship with someone is you experience a lot of self-doubt and uncertainty. When the person isn't answering your texts or hanging out with you, your mind can jump to some crazy conclusions. We've all been there, and I hated having to go through it again.

It not only drove me crazy, but I also knew that getting mad at these little things was going to drive us apart. So, when I felt myself getting angry or upset, I'd open up Tinder and swipe. I'd answer some messages, flirt a little and get to virtually know others.

It calmed me down. I was no longer obsessing over the idea of me and this boy I actually liked not working out. I knew that if it didn't, then I could just go on and get some fleeting satisfaction from my virtual reality. Maybe this sounds a little cheap, wrong or whatever else you may be thinking. But if flirting with someone else — knowing it'll never get past just that — is wrong, then I don't want to be right.

Trying to start a relationship with someone is literally like walking on egg shells 100 percent of the time. You hold your breath because you have finally opened up to someone, and you don't want that to end or magically disappear. So, if flirting with some other people will help you stop obsessing and worrying, then what's so bad about it?

Sometimes it's even nice to know that you still got it ("it” being that charm, wit and sense of someone wanting you). I don't care what anyone says; getting a little attention from people never hurt anybody. It gave me more confidence when talking to my crush, and overall, it took the stress off of wanting a relationship so badly.

What I'm trying to say is, a little harmless flirting may actually help your relationship. I'm not saying go out and flirt with every person you see and rub it in your SO's face. But when you're feeling a bit crazy or a bit down, there's nothing wrong in going out and getting a little attention from some strangers.

It gives you a break from reality, something we do in our everyday lives all the time. It's not for everybody, but if you find yourself in a rut, maybe give it a try.