Michelle Obama has been a beacon of guidance for many, and as she celebrates 28 years of marriage next month, she has some expertise in love.
However, some modern couples are cranky over claims the former US first lady has made on a recent episode of her podcast, which featured legendary comedian Conan O’Brien.
Speaking of relationships on The Michelle Obama Podcast, Obama said: “You can’t Tinder your way into a long-term relationship.”
“People aren’t perfect, marriage is hard, it’s a struggle for everyone,” she said.
“But the question you have to ask is: Do you want to spend this life with somebody? Do you want to build something with someone?”
The wife of ex-president Barack Obama has been vocal about the difficult reality of marriage in the past, even disclosing there were times she “wanted to push Barack out of the window.”
But her remark about Tinder has ignited some backlash from digital sweethearts across social media.
Couples who met on the popular dating app suggested Obama – and anyone without online dating experience – keep their opinions to themselves.
“Michelle Obama wouldn’t know, it’s not like she had Tinder or much of the technology we had today,” one person tweeted.
“Tell that to my wife, whom I met on Tinder five years ago and married in 2016,” wrote another, who added the couple was expecting their second child together.
A Current Affair reporter Alison Piotrowski is one of many Aussies who’ve met their long-term partners on Tinder.
Piotrowski matched with her now-husband Liam back in 2014, when the dating app first launched.
“Basically, I found that I had dated the same kind of guys in the same circles,” she tells 9Honey.
“I needed to date new people but I didn’t know how to do it, so I hopped on Tinder.”
Piotrowski made a pledge with her housemate at the time to go on 10 dates with 10 different guys. However, when she went on her third date with Liam, she didn’t bother fulfilling the pledge.
Within three years, the journalist married her “match” from the app, and the couple now has a two-year-old daughter, Frankie.
An advocate for dating apps, Piotrowski says the approach is “so straightforward” and “makes it easier to narrow it down who’s genuine and who’s a creep.”
“Particularly in a world where we are so crazily busy, we don’t have time to go to bars, and wait to be picked up. I feel like dating apps are almost the norm now.”
While dating, the couple realised they had multiple mutual friends and had even attended the same parties for years, but hadn’t crossed paths until they matched on Tinder.
“Where your relationship starts in the first place doesn’t matter, it’s about where the relationship is now.”
In the wake of Obama’s comment about Tinder, numerous social media users shared their positive experiences with the app.
“Long term relationships can be built from Tinder. I’m in one right now – three plus years,” shared one woman.
“Michelle Obama I love you SO much, but I’ve been in a relationship for six years with a man I met on tinder… so it does work,” commented another.
Another commenter simply asked: “Michelle Obama has tinder experience?”
However, some came to the Becoming author’s defence, suggesting her comments were taken out of context by people who hadn’t listened to the entire episode.
On the podcast, Obama clarified it was important to engage with people, even if you met them on an app to begin with.
Unfortunately for her, many commenters seemingly weren’t aware that she didn’t explicitly say people don’t form long-term relationships after meeting on Tinder.
The number of active Tinder users varies, with the company reporting up to 7.86 million users as of September 2019 in the US alone.
Globally, it’s estimated 50 million people use the dating platform, according to The Business of Apps, while the BBC pinned the figure slightly higher at 57 million, both figures dating back to 2018.
Since coronavirus, dating app usage has soared, with more singles swiping in these socially-distanced times.
Available in more than 190 countries, Tinder addressed the need to connect during coronavirus by launching a video chat function. This came after competitor dating platform and feminist app Bumble launched the function in June last year.
Video chats among Bumble users skyrocketed 31 per cent in usage during the month of March, averaging a call time of 14 minutes and increased to 76 per cent in May.
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