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Heard of the Tinderella syndrome?

Monday, 18 August 2014 - 4:40am IST | Place: Mumbai | Agency: dna

Psychologists believe we are slowly losing our ability to flirt in real life because of our dependance on mobile dating apps and online dating sites

A few years ago, dating online was looked at with contempt and a last resort for desperate singles. However, with technology evolving and the introduction of dating mobile apps in our lives, a lot of singles have succeeded finding love online. However, psychologists believe that the downside to the popularity of dating apps and sites has curbed social interaction. We now shy away from investing time in interacting with people offline. While this may be partially true for some people, it's not applicable to everyone believe individuals who have found love in the cyberworld.

Dating apps and sites help introverts open up

Twenty-eight year old, Michika Shah, a media executive met her husband online through a matchmaking site.

She says, "I had a lot of reservations about signing up on a matchmaking site and was reluctant to post my profile as I did not want to interact with random strangers. Little did I know that I would meet my future husband online. He sent me a friend's request, which I reluctantly accepted. We started chatting, and became good friends, but marriage did not enter the picture till a very long time. Both of us were keen to finish our studies, and gain financial stability before we walked down that road. It was only later that we decided that we wanted to spend our lives together."

Michika says, not everyone you meet online is true to their profile description. There will be those who want to con you. Stalkers and con artists and love rats are all present online. And while it makes you apprehensive, dating sites and mobile apps also give you access to more people, across the world that you would never encounter in your immediate circle. The whole idea is to use it wisely. It should be an addition to networking with people but never a replacement for social interaction.

She adds, "I know that a lot of people shy away from interacting with someone they consider attractive because they are introverts and are scared of being judged by someone they admire. These apps and sites help break that ice. Give you time to find that perfect opening line and to approach the person, you would otherwise shy away from."

Don't let the Tindrella syndrome take root

Seema Hingorrany, a clinical psychologist, says, "The Tinderella Syndrome is becoming rampant in Mumbai. Many
people are hooked online to find their lovers, partners and spouses. I see clients sometimes losing touch with
reality on dating sites. People go online for such searches because they are looking for instant gratification. Many don't even bother to meet the person in real life, and chatting continues for months. Interpersonal contact is totally
missing in such a dating style. While there is no harm meeting and interacting with someone online. You have to interact with someone face to face before you decide to take things further rather that get emotionally involved based on the limited interaction you have had online."

Why you should balance social interaction on and offline

Psychiatrist Anjali Chhabria, adds, "People find it easier to chat rather that meet people personally as their own flaws and short comings are easily hidden. Also, the initial fear of approaching men can be avoided. Women need not be worried about being judged for approaching a man at a bar or a club. Also women have the liberty to make a choice from many suitable matches rather than just one. Women also feel more confident expressing themselves more freely online. When one is really looking for a relationship, they must balance between looking out for people online as well as meeting new people socially. Totally dependinging on online relations can definitely lead women being single for longer as it may take time to get to know somebody online."

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