Actively looking for love in a big city such as New York, in which you have a myriad of options, can literally be like finding a needle in a haystack (or whatever clever analogy better fits New York City, like a seat on the E train during rush hour).
We all have a case of the "too many options" and our attention spans can be measured in mere nano seconds, an unappealing personality trait of Generation-Y that is hindering our dating lives. However, the loss of options and of our freedom is so unappealing that we would run the other way even if "the one" ever appeared in our lives (I believe that's called fear of commitment).
Even though our metropolis is densely populated with dateable men (and women), we have all picked up some nasty habits and have given into current circumstances that have made it difficult to date. Here are some reasons why we're all having a hard time dating:
1. Social Media
Social media (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram) has become a necessary evil in our society and to not be connected to one, if not all, would be the equivalent of non-existence.
If we meet someone new or find someone who piques our interest, the first thing we do is find him or her on Facebook or Instagram to see what he or she is all about.
Quite frankly, no one should know this much about anyone without actually knowing someone. Knowing too much is a huge turn off, and I don't care for your keeping track of all the places you've partied and all the meals you've hashtagged #foodporn.
2. Cell Phones
I love my phone; I practically can't live without it. In other words, my phone and I are in the never-ending "honeymoon" phase. Ironically, this very device designed to keep us connected has made us less social.
I walk down Lexington Avenue with my ear buds in, listening to Spotify, with my hands locked in praying mantis mode, texting. We give ourselves zero to no opportunity to be social with the outside world.
Didn't Mama ever tell you that you can meet the love of your life (or your next potential suitor) while waiting on line for coffee? You can't meet him or her with your ear buds in, either.
I am not at all saying this is a bad thing. This is the best time in our lives to be selfish. We want our freedom to live young and wild and free -- cue the music.
However, the free-as-a-bird, no-ties-to-anything formula makes it very difficult to be (or want to be) in a functioning relationship, as it requires you to be more selfless and less selfish. Maybe we just aren't ready to relinquish some of the spotlight, and that's okay.
4. Hook-Up Culture
Dating is hard because we hook up. We don't date; we hook up, despite what Kelly Clarkson's prerogatives are.
Most of us (myself included) hook up and believe that magically this person we have hot romps with will turn into a full-blown serious relationship. (Warning: This can happen because it has happened to me but it doesn't mean that it will happen.)
The general consensus on this matter, in regards to men, is why would they buy the cow if they can get the milk for free (and other gross analogies). The hookups will continue (ain't nothing wrong with that, if it works for you). Out of convenience, hookups work for us because we are...
Are we career obsessed? Maybe. Do we work way too many hours? Absolutely. Does this affect your dating life when all you want to do after a long day is crawl back into bed and re-watch old episodes of "Girls" and then maybe make a booty call later?
The dating-less cycle continues.
With New York City being unaffordable for us recent college grads, most of our paycheck goes to astronomical rents, depressing student loan payments and Whole Foods shopping sprees (I needed that flax seed grain sprouted organic sourdough bread). Don't even get me started on what it costs to go out, or that drinking a few cocktails will set you back $50 and only leave you feeling slightly buzzed.
The cost of dating or taking someone on a date can leave you with a deep hole in your wallet.
7. The Wrong People
We all date the wrong people, like those who are unavailable and, well, artists.
Save yourself now. Save yourself time, energy and tears, and do not date people who do not want to date you or be with you. People who have career goals and slightly more stability are better to date (although, ironically, you learn this from dating the wrong people).
Don't say I didn't warn you and possibly just saved you years of therapy.
Photo via We Heart It