By Tinderella & Tinderfella

So you find yourself at the end of a long term relationship ready to dip your toe into the unfamiliar world of dating only to find that the game has had a paradigm shift since you last played. The days of meeting someone in a bar are so passé now all you need to do is download an app and you have an MCG full of prospective male suitors within your GPS range just waiting for your attention.

My intent is not to scare you into avoidance; my intent is to share my experience in the hope that it helps you navigate your path when transitioning into the same space as a mature woman. In the interests of offering a balanced perspective I would also like to share the flip side by providing the thoughts of a male friend that I made on Tinder who managed to change my linear view.

The Tinderella Perspective

My journey into the land of Tinder began one wine fuelled evening with my girlfriends sitting in my living area. They decided it was a great way to transition me into the land of singledom and address some of my short term needs as a female.

So images uploaded a short bio defined…”Laugh, wine and a little intellect” and I was on my way. Playing was simple swipe left for the dodgy and right for the hottie and to my surprise match after match appeared on my screen. Young, fun, quirky and witty the choices were endless. The response was overwhelming for an almost 40 year old who had been void of male attention for some time. What was even more surprising was the level of messaging required to crack the surface of what may be a potential date and you still wore the risk of arriving at a train wreck.

So once I got my groove on I clarified to myself what I was looking for. It was someone I was physically attracted to, that I could have fun with, that had a brain and that made me feel safe, I was not in the market for a long termer. However, communicating this in a profile was to high risk and would leave me inundated with random sex fiends

I navigated the minefield of matches and progressed several conversations, some fizzled, some I unmatched and a very select few I actually met for coffee.

The biggest insight for me during my time on Tinder was to set no expectations and you will find that people will surprise you; you just need to be open to it.

The one person that I have invested time in is the person I almost unmatched due to poor conversation timing (not that he would of known) and photos that did not do his true physical appearance justice. However the conversation became very interesting and the expectations were so low that when we did finally go out on a date the whole package was a pleasant surprise.

The Tinderfella Perspective

So for me Tinder is easy and its honest in that it cuts out the bullshit you may be exposed to in a face to face pick up scenario where we may pretend as men we care more than we actually do. However, it’s not as easy as you think because you have to do something with it in terms of the response you receive. Tinder also has a tendency to suck you in in terms of time…you say just 5 more swipes and thirty minutes later you’re still swiping.

So what do I look for in a Tinder profile? Someone who looks normal with a bit of cheek, it makes the process more exciting. However I overlay a filter assumption based on experience that the photos of the women I am looking at are the best photos of them.

Whilst most people on tinder are looking for sex its also fair to say that many people are also using it as a way to meet new people who are interesting. My sister not so long ago moved to Queensland and didn’t know anyone, so I suggested she set up a Tinder profile. She is now engaged to a guy she met on Tinder, so it is possible for real relationships to evolve.

The rules of Tinder are that there are no rules you make your own rules based on what feels right with the person your conversing with at the time. At the end of the day it all comes back to basics, do whatever you want whatever feels comfortable but know that most men are well versed in telling women what they want to hear.

My best advice in photos and conversation is to show yourself as you really are because at the end of the day if you are going to meet people they are going to see you for who you really are anyway. Don’t be afraid to say what it is that you are on Tinder for and don’t be afraid to ask questions.

Tips on How to Rock Your Tinder Experience

Think long and hard about whether you want a man who:

• has his mates in every photo, if there that close all the time it’s likely he may well show and share everything with them…you get the gist
• has an alcoholic beverage in his hand in every photo unless you want someone who’s profession is partying
• is happy to use his ex girlfriend/wife in his profile photos
• thinks its attractive to pose with tigers or take a selfie whilst flexing his muscles in the mirror
• tells you your gorgeous from the first interaction. It’s likely he is telling 20 other girls the same thing
• doesn’t ask you anything about you. This is generally because he finds himself so interesting

Don’t

• Expect a long termer or a husband but know that anything is possible
• Give everything away, there is a lot to be said about the air of mystery
• Share images of yourself that you wouldn’t want in the public domain
• Be to shallow, hotties are nice but they often know it and play the game accordingly
• Make the first approach apparently this makes you look to eager

Do

• Use real photos of yourself, posing is fun but natural shots can be powerful
• Be open to spontaneity, a date in a safe place with a stranger could be a lot of fun
• Be mindful that different age brackets tend to deliver different results in terms of what people are seeking. Sometimes young definitely = fun
• Be safe, ensure your friends have the full details of any guys you intend to date and where you are going at what times. Call someone at the end of the date so they know your home safe and sound.

Lastly expect the unexpected – men aren’t good at taking photos of themselves so if he looks cute but you’re not sure take the risk swipe right and you may be surprised with what you end up with.

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