Online dating has changed everything
But Haidt argues that when you hit this stage, you should be patient. A week later, they were married. Now your texts are like: With luck, if you allow yourself to invest more in the other person, you will find a beautiful life companion. Like all drugs, though, this high wears off after 12 to 18 months.
And there are many great things about being in a committed relationship. Before online dating, this would have been a fruitless quest, but now, at any time of the day, no matter where you are, you are just a few screens away from sending a message to your very specific dream man. Every smile makes your heart flutter. Throw in the fact that people now get married later in life than ever before, turning their early 20s into a relentless hunt for more dating has changed everything options than previous generations could have ever imagined, and you have a recipe for romance gone haywire.
Throughout all our interviews—and in research on the subject—this is a consistent finding: In the history of our species, no group has ever had as many romantic options as we have now. People take these parameters very seriously. I looked into it, and this is not uncommon. The stunning fact remained: On the Internet, there are no lonely corners. The person I described was a little younger than me, small, with dark hair.
During this phase, your brain floods your neural synapses with dopamine, the same neurotransmitter that gets released when you do cocaine. And so far, it has. In the first stage of a relationship, you have passionate love.
When you watched their actual browsing habits—who they looked at and contacted—they went way outside of what they said they wanted. I had a rather weird firsthand experience with this. One is at the apex of the passionate-love phase.
Every night is more magical than the last. If passionate love is the cocaine of love, companionate love is like having a glass of wine. In theory, more options are better, right?
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