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The Impact of Digital Dating on Gen Z Mental Health

Gen Zers, or 'zoomers,' born in the 1990s, have grown up with technology. Their demographic has made the popularity of gaming outstrip movies and music. They are more likely to tap into phone apps for making payments, and may well obsess about their social media. And they have also enthusiastically embraced digital matchmaking. It makes sense that if you're used to communicating by keyboard, then why not take advantage of dating sites? These outlets represent such a convenient way to find potential partners. The secure communication channels are conducive to open and honest connection. Built-in algorithms help find compatible individuals. But does digital dating impact mental health? Let's take a closer look.

Good for self-esteem

The nature of modern dating sites is that they are firmly geared towards a successful outcome. Signing up for local adult dating allows zoomers to tap into multiple functions. Algorithms will help steer them in the direction of those site users who would appear to be the most compatible. There are also all sorts of useful shortcuts for touching base with prospective partners, such as the ability to send someone a 'wink,' an informal way of attracting their attention.

The downsides

As with most other forms of social media, there can be a tendency for users to present the most idyllic version of themselves, as opposed to the most honest. The urge to post airbrushed images, sometimes enhanced by software such as PhotoShop, can have a detrimental effect on mental health. People feel an overwhelming need to try and behave the same way. There can also be an assumption that digital dating offers far more reliable options for connecting than its offline variation. If someone doesn't find their ideal match straight away, they might question their ability to interact, or even assume nobody finds them attractive – leading to low self-esteem. This is one of the major bugbears people have when it comes to the digital world – the pressure to conform to what is seen as 'the normal standards' of looks and presentation. The key for Gen Zers who might find themselves in a position of being judged is to be able to place everything in perspective.

Communication techniques

One aspect of digital dating that is so worthwhile for zoomers in terms of their mental health is the ability to enjoy seamless communication. When seeking a potential love interest, or even just someone you can casually meet for sex, there's nothing as relaxing as chilling at home, a cup of coffee or glass of wine at hand, then browsing through the profiles of other Gen Z'ers. This environment is the perfect way to connect, and if you have always considered yourself a little shy or awkward you will benefit from this unique and successful method of touching base. In no time you'll be flirting with the other members as if you were born to be a successful online dater.

Joining an inclusive community

Perhaps more than any previous generation, Gen Z are fully aware of the need to feel included, particularly over issues such as gender, and identity. Young people can be vulnerable as they come to terms with inner turmoil. Those from family backgrounds that may be less progressive when it comes to same-sex or trans issues might feel reluctant to admit how they perceive themselves, and either delay 'coming out,' or even decide to harbour secrets. The impact on their mental health can be considerable. This is another reason why more and more single zoomers are gravitating to digital dating outlets. These represent social hubs where newcomers are never judged and can find a wealth of support and guidance from people who have been through the same experiences.

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