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Digital Subscriptions > Psychologies > December 2019 > Navigate online dating

Navigate online dating

In our column and podcast series, Professor Sarah Niblock, CEO of the UK Council for Psychotherapy, explores challenges that affect us all. She discusses finding love online, dating apps and the role of self-love when seeking a partner

The mechanics of meeting a mate have absolutely transformed in the past decade. In my parents’ day, you typically met, courted and married someone from your own village or town. Today, we can access a million or more potential partners with pre-matched values and interests via our smartphone.

Why wouldn’t we embrace those free apps when so few of us have the time, money or inclination to go out and meet people? Even office romances are tricky nowadays with some employers actively discouraging them.

Pros and cons

There’s good news emerging about apps. Surveys of newlyweds are overturning the notion that apps are only for short-term flings, with one study showing that at least a third of spouses met their match on their smartphone.

Research has also revealed an increase in the formation of intercultural relationships through apps, as well as greater opportunities for those seeking same-sex partnerships.

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