The pandemic is changing the way we live in a way that we’ve never experienced before. Needless to say, we’re living through strange times—and it can be particularly strange in dating.
Navigating the bizarre world of swiping where catfishers and ghosters lurk in every corner is hard enough. Throw in a global health crisis that prevents you from being physically close to someone, and it complicates things even further.
Whether you’re looking for someone special or someone to casually date, you have to follow the social distancing protocols to stay safe during this time and change your dating approach.
Even though most states have begun reopening, experts predict that social distancing will be in effect through the summer and possibly till the end of the year. For single people trying to meet new potential matches, this poses a particularly specific dilemma—how do you get to know someone without being in close proximity?
In an interview with Say Allo, dating and relationship expert, Susan Winter, said that even though the pandemic has slowed things down, she thinks it’s one of the most wonderful things that could possibly happen for singles, because it forces them to focus on building deeper emotional intimacy with their matches.
“We're not allowed to meet physically in person, so the entire way in which we meet and begin to build a relationship is now based upon communication,” Winter said. “Use a sense of discretion and discrimination and move slowly, even if you have an amazing connection. Take your time and get to know them, talk to them. This is an adjustment.”
An adjustment that requires dater’s to become creative, intentional and to think outside the box about their dates. The good news is that meeting virtually (or in-person while observing social distancing) does not have to be a boring prospect. And we don’t need to see it as deprivation.
Dating can very much still happen and can even be more exciting than the conventional dates we’re used to going on. With some planning and effort, connection can happen no matter the stage of your relationship—newly dating, long-distance, committed or anything else in between.
Spice up your social distancing love life with these five date ideas. Before you know it, you’ll be kindling the flames of love, passion and friendship with your matches.
Watch a movie together and order the same takeout
Movie dates are a classic date option that can be easily recreated remotely. Create the experience by ordering takeout, popping some popcorn, lighting some candles and getting cozy on your couch under a pile of blankets. Synchronize your experiences by ordering the same type of food and watching the same movie together. After you’re done watching, you can both discuss the movie, offering your own personal “movie reviews.”
Take an online class together
There are now a ton of digital classes available—from cooking classes to history lessons, many of which are free. If you have mutual interests or you’re both interested in learning more about a certain subject, enroll in online classes related to those topics. Pick a class and have your date sign up at the same time. Making them your classmate will give both of you something in common, and provide lots of interesting things to talk about during your video dates.
Travel and explore the world
If both of you are itching to travel and explore new sights and sounds, it’s now possible to travel around the world from the comfort of your home...without a passport! There are thousands of museums now offering virtual tours, including the Louvre in Paris and the British Museum in London. During these tours you can choose exhibits and share them with your dates. If you’re an animal lover, you can observe them on animal cams zoos are offering up. The Houston and Atlanta Zoo have elephant, panda and giraffe cams that both you and your date can enjoy watching during a call.
Get to know each other on a deeper level
What better way to get to know each other than through a fun Q&A session? Prepare a list of 10-20 questions about each other—this encourages a flowing back and forth dialogue. If you’re in the early stages of dating, try keeping the questions lighthearted. If you prefer a more specific approach, you can swap music, YouTube playlists or podcasts playlists with each other, and share your thoughts on them. You can also plan a personality test-theme date night where you can take popular online quizzes such as Love languages, Myers-Briggs type, Enneagram, Big Five Score and discuss your results with each other. If you’re into astrology, you can discuss your natal chart and look at the ways in which you’re compatible (and not compatible).
Take it off screen (and be smart about it!)
If you’re comfortable meeting in person after spending enough virtual time with them, you can plan a socially distant date outdoors. There are many ways to limit contact and still spend quality time together: take a walk in a park or beach, play a sport where there’s no body contact such as tennis, go on a bike ride, hike a nature trail, have a picnic and or a barbecue, or plan an outdoor movie night. In this way you get the intimacy of a face-to-face interaction that’s closer, without the health risks involved with being in close proximity.
Ready to Say Allo to build a deeper intimate connection with that special someone?