Like Cassie, I joined online dating. I did it back in 2013, just after New Year’s. I had just graduated with my master’s degree, and was about to begin a job as a full-time nanny. I’ve never been one to go out, especially by myself. In those instances I actually left the house after dark, it would be to sit in a friend’s living room drinking tea or beer or wine and chatting or watching Avatar: The Last Airbender or forcing another friend to take an online Myers-Briggs quiz.
In short: I probably wasn’t going to meet someone to date.
I already knew everyone in my friend groups. They were dating each other, or not interested, or not interested in women, generally. Besides that, I was already in the discernment process for ordained ministry, and knew I would have some big changes coming. Dating seemed…imprudent.
But then I made a New Year’s resolution to try new things, and I had a couple glasses of wine, and I no longer had a thesis to write, so I thought why not create an online dating profile?
It wasn’t perfect immediately (my worst mistake was trying to join a “Christian” site first), but I kept messaging someone, and then texting, and then we set up a first date at the Indianapolis Museum of Art, and now he’s falling asleep next to me on the couch.
I know several people who met online and then made up a meet cute to tell friends and family. There’s less of a stigma around meeting online today, but it’s still not considered especially romantic. There are worse ways to meet (like the couple in this post who met at a Nickelback concert), but meeting online isn’t exactly something to brag about.
I couldn’t care less. I tell everyone who asks how we met that we met on OKCupid.
When we first met, we were living a block away from each other. A block. But we’re both introverts and we didn’t have mutual friends and we operated in different circles. If I hadn’t joined online dating, if OKCupid hadn’t decided we were a 94 percent match, if he hadn’t taken the risk of sending me a message, we would never have met. And, at the risk of making readers gag on syrupy, overused sentiments, being married to Josh really is the best thing that’s happened to me.
I joined online dating. And I know my experience is not universal, or even typical—I’ve read and heard plenty of horror stories that make me question my faith in humanity, and my husband and I are big fans of Catfish (I love Max!). But I also know that sometimes, for some people, it really works.
Alissa Goudswaard Anderson (’10) lives with her husband Josh in New York City, where she is earning her Master of Divinity at General Theological Seminary. Alissa enjoys private kitchen dance parties, big Midwestern thunderstorms, and perusing other peoples’ bookshelves. For more, find her online at www.episcotheque.wordpress.com or tweet her @episcotheque.