How Online Dating Helped Me Find My Voice

Online dating is (arguably) the easiest way of finding a partner these days. Okay, maybe not the easiest but definitely requires the least effort. Nothing is easier and more comfortable than swiping away on Tinder while sitting on the couch with a bottle of wine, in pajamas and not having to go out to loud bars — or to public in general.

However, I have to admit it made me lazy and even more introverted. I suffer from anxiety and after the breakdown of a relationship, I decided to dive head first into online dating. Nothing better than a good old rebound, eh? WRONG.

And that was when my two-year long struggle started. I went on countless dates, tried almost all dating apps available on the App Store and have to admit, had my heart broken a few times.

I have been through hookups, flings and situationships. Whenever someone showed interest and wanted a more serious thing, I got scared and ran away.

When I showed more interest in someone more than a casual thing, they ghosted. Oh, I have been ghosted so many times I lost count.

I was chasing the idea of love and being “complete” by being in a relationship because I was ridiculously lonely, and I thought only another person can fix this. I was told that I am a failure if I am single, so I chose to put up with men who gave less than what I was giving and what I deserve. And it made me very miserable.

I have so much love that I feel like I am bursting at the seams. And I want to share that, but it just seemed like no-one wants to take it. And I have been told that I am “too much”, “too sensitive” and “too needy” many times. So many times, that I almost started believing it.

But I got something out of it: I slowly became more assertive, defined my value and worth and taught me my limits. I learned that if someone doesn’t accept me with all aspects of my personality — even with the anxiety — I have nothing to do with them. And it made me realise how much writing is a significant part of how I am processing things.

During the countless heartbreaks and disappointments, I started writing things out, as part of therapy and a healthier coping mechanism than drinking. It worked, so I kept doing it and turned into a side gig for a bit of money. Two birds, one stone.

And that taught me how to share my feelings and communicate in real life as well, I am more open, and I feel more comfortable with voicing my opinion, even if it is an uncomfortable or controversial one.

I am doing better. I am very far from thriving, but I am doing much better and it is maybe the end of the era of online dating apps after such a long time.

And that love that I have to give? I will give it to the person who deserves it.

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Mária Nagy

Mária Nagy

Politics, equality, feminism and everything else.