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Dear Danielle: Online Dating Is Not Working for Me - Let's Bring Back Coffee Dates

by Danielle Wright

The simple answer is that you’re using dating apps incorrectly.

Online dating is not ideal; it is not the place you go thinking you’re going to meet your soulmate or “the one”. It’s a practice to get you into the habit of putting yourself out there. Many will agree that most people would prefer to meet someone in person, at work, or a party and let the relationship develop over time. A large portion of successful relationships happened through mutual friends and proximity—networking. If you’re having trouble with dating apps, stick around to find out why.


I want to start with the ladies because the canceling of coffee dates has left me perturbed. There is a thing called situational appropriateness which is the concept of determining what cultural or linguistic behavior is most appropriate for the situation. There are an uncomfortable amount of TikTok self-proclaimed relationship gurus who, if you listen to them will keep you swiping for the rest of your life.

Men on dating apps for the most part are looking for long-term committed relationships. Of course, some are cheating on their significant others or just looking for a good time, but those degenerates are usually easy to spot. Women have to understand that because men take on all the risk with sometimes no reward, if they are serious about finding someone special they will proceed with caution.

This method may include a coffee date, a museum, or a walk in the park. Each of those is perfectly fine when you’re meeting someone off of a dating app for the first time. Please, let’s lower the expectation that a stranger is supposed to send you a Black car, make reservations at a five-star restaurant, and pay a bill that amounts to well over $350. You are a stranger….from an app.

Men who meet women organically are more likely to splurge on a first date versus men who meet women online. It’s just the reality of the situation because again, he assumes all the risk—financial, physical, and mental. The physical risk is already taken care of when you meet someone in person, so in this case a man can let his guard down and plan a nice date.

Also, with dating apps, it’s all superficial. You’re swiping right or left based on a person’s photos and the descriptions they write—if any. There isn’t much to go off of for the man to properly lead, which is why a small, cost-efficient date is considered situationally appropriate.

Women, stop spending days or weeks messaging a man on an app. Suggest meeting him for coffee or taking him up on the offer after the max, ten messages. During the meet-up, you should express what your standards are and remember to present yourself well. How you carry yourself is very significant.

If you’re looking for a relationship, tell him. If you’re used to nice restaurants and flowers, tell him. If you have hobbies, tell him. If your goal is to be a kept woman at some point in life, tell him. Lay it out on the first meet-up so when he follows up with the first date your expectations can now be higher. This potential suitor has felt you out, he’s shown himself to be physically attracted to you and so, the ball is in his court to wine and dine you.

This is where many women go wrong…either they or the person they’ve matched with does not look like their pictures, the man is boring, he’s cheap, or worse, he begrudgingly plans a date. Now you’re all dressed up and sitting at this beautiful restaurant not having a good time and feeling uncomfortable because you’ve taken the advice of self-proclaimed dating gurus who convinced you that you should coerce a stranger to take you on a $350 date. Go figure.


Blame other men for ruining it for other men. Men seem to have a problem holding one another accountable. Dating apps for many men have become a way to cheat without getting caught. I remember matching with a guy, who then added me on Instagram. Afterward, he would message me several times per day and get upset when I took too long to reply. Low and behold, whilst scrolling I saw a photo pop up on my timeline of him and his girlfriend vacationing in Puerto Rico. No, she was not a new girlfriend, they were celebrating an anniversary.

If more men were serious about looking for and wanting a long-term commitment it would reduce the amount of women who have since decided dating apps are a waste of their time. According to statistics, men outnumber women 9:1 on Tinder, 7:3 on Bumble, and 5:1 on Match. Not only have women shown they are less interested in dating apps, many are opting to stay single.

Related articles: Why is Dating So Hard

The average experience for a woman is unpleasant when dealing with a man, especially as women scroll through apps like TikTok and Twitter where they see women coming out in droves to talk about how shitty their partner is—cheating, lying, weaponized incompetence, financial instability and more.

Men have the issue of not knowing if a woman is telling the truth about her appearance on an app, and women have the issue of not knowing if the man she’s going to match with is in a relationship, a hobosexual (a person who has sex with strangers to prevent homelessness), or a convict. So, if you’re having a hard time with dating apps consider this very real could be time to delete. Attend events and meet women/men in person among your circle of friends. I recommend starting there.


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