Why do we trust our online dates? Essentially, we are putting complete faith in the hands of someone we've decided to meet just because we think they're hot and happen to be within our selected age and location radius. Before diving into digital dating, it's important to ask yourself: do you know how to swipe without safely?
Welcome to your class: Tinder Safety 101.
THIS TIME, STALKING IS OK
1) Check to see if you have mutual friends
2) How many friends does he have on his various socials? Does this seem like a real account?
3) Does he look similar in all of his photos, or does he vary from male model to lagoon creature?
4) Google him.
NO GLOVE, NO LOVE...SERIOUSLY THOUGH
Increased use of dating apps has been linked to a rise in STD's such as chlamydia and Gonorrhea. So remember: if you want to jump into the sheets with your date, no judgement here. Just make sure you wrap it up first. You don't want your one night stand to be the one you'll never forget. Ouch.
TELL YOUR FRENDS WHERE YOU'RE GOING, & SHARE HIS INFO
The Companion App, which you can get in the Apple Store, allows you to share your location with your friends as they track your progress, safety, and motion through the light. If your phone suddenly drops, or you press an emergency button, your friend will be alerted and they can contact the authorities or immediately as you if you're OK. Additionally, it's always good to give your friends a heads up as to who you're going out with in the first place. Share his pic and info with a few close buds and let them know where you'll be going on your date. Remember: we are all presenting the best version of ourselves online. You can't be 100% sure about what you'll be getting in real life.
MEET AT A NEUTRAL, PUBLIC PLACE
Does your date want to meet you for a romantic dinner in a back alleyway at 3am in the middle of nowhere? Probably not a great idea. Day dates are great for first time meetings. Additionally, pick familiar restaurants that are close to your house. On a first date with a stranger, it's always a good idea to have things on your terms.
THINK YOU'RE BEING CATFISHED?
If you've watched enough episodes of Catfish to think you're being well....Catfished, then check out the website TinyEye. Enter in your date's photos and it will reverse image search them to see if they show up anywhere else on the Internet. Is your date actually a Getty Image Stock Photo that 300 other girls on the Internet are also dating? If you have any suspicions or it seems to good to be true, check it out first.
NEVER LEAVE YOUR DRINK ALONE
This goes without saying: never leave your drink unattended. If he goes to the bar to get you a drink, go with him. If you go to the bathroom, take your drink with you, or get a new drink when you come back. Remember: this is a stranger you are dealing with and unfortunately roofies are a thing. Be careful and cautious.
And remember: true love does exist. Have fun, be optimistic. And be safe.
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