How do you date in the day and age of a national lockdown? Well, digital dating seems to be the new normal under the circumstance, as the coronavirus pandemic has forced the dating scene to become virtual.
Travel writer Archana Singh says, “I created an account on a dating app solely out of boredom and my interaction with one guy stood out prominently. Since we had a lot of time, our topics ranged from global travels to world politics. After chatting for a few days, he asked me out on a real ‘virtual’ date – through video calling. We hit it off instantly. There seems to be a certain comfort in knowing that someone is out there waiting for you.”
Filmmaker Trishant Srivastava says, “What better way to spend lockdown than swiping left and right. And while at that, I managed to set up a virtual date for me. It was awkward but went well. I had no idea what to do because it was new for me, as it was for her – to date on screen. We talked a lot about ourselves.”
Read: Online dating’s new lockdown norms:?Are the rules changing??
Virtual dating isn’t always about chatting, it’s about being creative as well. Journalist Aditya Kunal Halder says, “Just before lockdown, I had met a girl briefly at an event and asked her out. I wanted to keep my promise of taking her out on a date so we went the virtual way. Soon I realised I would have to build more of an emotional connection first because I won’t be able to see her physically. So we played truth or dare, did a dance-off, a virtual house tour, cooked pizza together, played online games and looked at the stars. It’s going wonderful. Emotional connect is the key.”
However, there is always a downside to everything and in virtual dating, trust factor is a major concern for many.
Singh says, “Trust is a major challenge. You don’t reveal everything about yourself online as you don’t know much about the person on the other side.”
And some are missing cherishing intimate moments. Srivastava adds, “Virtually, we can’t share moments. I have fond memories of my past dates that included holding hands, having coffee or walking on a street and more . Right now, nothing seems attractive.”
Sometimes, the virtual world can be cruel too – from bad network connection to camera shyness. In such situations, expressing your love with a device isn’t easy.
Read: This woman who arranged a virtual blind date for her mother and prof is the best wingman you could ever want
BBA student Sachin Joseph says, “Virtual dating is driving me crazy. I’m tired of talking to people through a screen. This is the new normal and I hate it. I think it would have been better in person because you can read her body language. In person, you can see if they’re comfortable, or having a good time.”
Social activist Himanshi Narula also took the virtual route to meet a prospective match but that didn’t go well owing to poor network. She says, “The voice and video kept breaking and we couldn’t talk much. Anyway, how will I even decide my future husband through a video date? It didn’t make much sense. I am also very apprehensive towards camera.”
Some styling tips for the perfect virtual date
A virtual first impression still counts for something. Stylist Aakansha Kapoor gives some tips.
• Make an effort and dress as if it’s happening in person.
• For daytime dates, go for a nice high-waisted jeans with your favourite tee and hoops. Men can go for a solid tee with jeans.
• For evening dates, go for a nice romantic skirt with a cute top and earrings. As most of your body won’t be visible, you can add statement sleeves. Men should go for a Tshirt with a jacket or a casual shirt with jeans.
• If it’s a special day or you’re feeling fancy, women can go for a pretty dress, a nice hairstyle and subtle makeup.
• A makeup during this time would look a bit too much so just pop a red lipstick, without trying too hard.
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