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There have been many casualties of the pandemic, of varying degrees. One little-noted consequence is its effect on dating. Social distancing, wearing masks and losing access to normal social gathering spots — from happy hours at bars to indoor dining at restaurants — has made normal dating seem like a relic of the past.
Charlotte Huff, writing for the American Psychological Association’s website, APA.org, sums up the problem: “Even a public health crisis won’t squelch the human need to connect with others emotionally and physically, which may even be stronger now than ever before…”
That human need is expressed, for example, in online dating service Match’s solid revenue growth through the second half of 2020. In an interview with Fortune magazine, Match CEO Hesam Hosseini said “During the pandemic, with hooking up really off the table, we’ve really seen that accelerate a strong demand for services and apps that provide more meaningful connections.”
Huff, writing for the APA, turned to psychologists for advice on the issue. “How can those searching for that special someone,” she asks, “best navigate dating in a physically distanced world? Psychologists recommend strategies to help patients sort through the emotional and practical logistics:”
- Appreciate the benefits of virtual connections
- Brainstorm creative dates
- Acknowledge limitations
- Create trust
- Think through in-person logistics
- Practice self-compassion
For a more in-depth discussion of each of these strategies, see the full article here.