Online dating sure can be frustrating.

Putting yourself out there on a dating app can be absolutely nerve-wracking. After all, you’re essentially subjecting yourself to the judgment of every single member of your preferred gender that lives in the immediate area. And then, when you match up with someone, there’s always the fear they’re going to be a psychopath, a weirdo, a cheater, or just someone who’s not who they say they are.

But what can be even worse is the soul-crushing routine of not matching with anyone, of being rejected by your matches, or being “ghosted” and having your messages ignored. Our Japanese language reporter Hirazi, a veteran of the online dating world, knows these feelings well, yet he still decided to sign up for Tinder to see if it’s any better than the numerous other apps he’s tried.

Here are 40 of his feelings and experiences as he tried to navigate the world of Tinder.

40 Experiences of Using Tinder (From a Man’s Perspective)
1. Sign up for a free account just to see what it’s like
2. Worry about what to do for the profile picture for about an hour
3. Try to take selfies even though I hate them
4. In the end decide to crop some old photos
5. Write nothing but ●● in the self description box
6. Be alarmed by how many women are swiping right
7. Look at so many photos of women that I run out of data for my phone
8. Add an extra gigabyte of data to my plan
9. A pretty woman swiped right but I start to worry she’s just selling something
10. She really was just selling something

11. Now I’m scared of Tinder saleswomen
12. Finally get matched with someone who looks perfect for me
13. Think of what to say in the first message for about an hour
14. Use a template to create a personal intro message and send it
15. Worry that I said something wrong for two or three hours
16. Feel relieved that a response finally came
17. Feeling like I have to end every message with a question
18. Eagerly wishing they would ask me a question, too
19. “Let’s exchange Line app account info!”
20. “But only after we meet!”

21. Start to worry that she’s another saleswoman
22. Suddenly the match disappears
23. Wonder what happened for two or three hours, can’t figure it out
24. Try to tell myself “Nothing’s wrong with me…she must have been a saleswoman…”
25. Can’t accept reality
26. Desperately start to indiscriminately swipe right
27. Accidentally swipe right on an acquaintance, quietly delete it
28. Send my first message template to all the matches
29. Have about the same back and forth as the last match
30. Finally get a date

31. Live in fear of a sudden cancellation for days
32. A woman who looks absolutely nothing like her profile pic shows up
33. She says, “It’s an old photo~” even though I didn’t ask
34. We talked too much over text, so now we have nothing to talk about in person
35. I try really hard to think of things to say but nothing is working
36. After a couple drinks, I start to feel more confident, and get my hopes up that things are going to go well
37. She’s picked up on my hopeful intentions and now everything is awkward
38. Worry about whether to split the bill or pay for the whole thing…decide to ask her to pay about 30 percent
39. Try sending a follow-up message later but she never reads it
40. “There’s no one new around you”

When you’ve swiped left or right on all of the eligible singles around you and there’s no one left to match with; when all of your matches stop talking to you; when the few dates you manage to book go just terribly; that is the struggle of online dating, no matter what app you use.

Hirazi believes that, in the hierarchy of online dating, women are on top. The hopes and dreams of the male participants of Tinder and other dating sites can be raised and dashed by a single word on the part of their female matches, he says. But let me tell you, men of the online dating world, I know from my own experience that women feel the exact same way.

So to anyone who is struggling with online dating, just remember that it sucks for everyone! When you feel like you’re about to give up, reread this list and remember that you’re not alone. And don’t worry; you can find that special someone through online dating, even if there are some miscommunications along the way.

Top Image: Pakutaso
Insert Images: Pakutaso (1, 2, 3, 4, 5)
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[ Read in Japanese ]