November 16, 2017

What it was like to try the dating app Bumble

“I don’t need to meet someone online, it’s not an authentic experience”

“Anyone can lie online. Insert terrifying catfish scenario here”

“I don’t want anyone to know that we met online”

These are just a few reasons why people (ahem myself) have avoided online dating, apart from the fact that I’m not on the hunt for a man. I did find Bumble intriguing though so when my friend showed me how the app worked, I decided to check it out in the name of research. Here were all these people just waiting around to connect with all these other people. A bunch of singles hoping to swipe into the apples of their eyes. Online dating isn't as taboo as it used to be and now people seem to be falling in love via algorithms all around me. I’ve had many people recommend online dating, from my coworkers to my RMT.

Bumble is deemed the Sadie Hawkins dance of dating apps, and was co-founded by Whitney Wolfe Herd who left her job at Tinder after being discriminated against and harassed by a cofounder of the company. With Bumble, women no longer put up with a barrage of gross and unwanted messages off the kick. If you swipe right and he swipes right, you match but the girl has 24 hours to initiate a conversation. The guy basically can’t talk to a girl without her consent. The internet is a breeding ground for predatory behaviour, and I liked having that safety net of control. But winning Prince Charming over with an irresistible introduction wasn't going to be easy, because a) I'm not good at flirting, and b) I ain’t a charismatic player who can drop smooth lines to nab boys. 

Profile Prep

The first thing you have to do is set up a profile. You can only sign up if you have Facebook, as the app auto-populates your name and age from FB. Early in life I was assigned a very unique and ethnic name which could potentially make identifying and stalking me easier, so I went and changed my name on Facebook so I could reel in all the men anonymously. I also think it's important to start all of my relationships off on the solid foundation of a lie. 


Online dating in my mind is also known as a MMM (Mobile Meat Market). And you ain’t gonna sell that real estate if you don’t have strategically staged photos. In this app, you’re as good as your looks, and I can only imagine what I was up against (e.g. perfectly contoured faces, women with more curves than the Red River, women who actually smiled and laughed, etc.). But being the repressed, awkward girl that I am, I made sure to choose something modest. Something that didn’t scream that I wanted a good time. Nothing suggestive. I didn’t want to misrepresent myself because at the end of the day I would be the one disappointed if the guy showed up and was all “Aww, you were prettier in your photos. Byeeee.”

So I chose the following conservative photo. I’m indoors, wearing a parka buttoned up to my chin, smirking in front of some cool art. All possible limbs are crossed suggesting I am a very closed off person. Unfortunately it looks like the polar bear is giving me mad side eye but whateverrr.

Bio 101

In terms of the bio, I had no idea what to write. It needed to be original. Everyone else was listing cliche hobbies like hiking and traveling. Yeah, yeah we get it, you’re “active”. I’m more of an indoorsy person, and I refuse to go camping. Hard left if you love camping.

At first I was tempted to list some of my flaws, get it all out there:
  • I am very motivated by fear
  • My scoliosis prevents me from sitting up straight
  • If I consume dairy or alcohol I break out in hives
But my inner John Mulaney didn’t want to scare all the boys away from the yard.

So I settled on something inconsequential. Do half the guys even read the bios anyways?

Get Bumbling

Once you're set up, you immediately see profiles one at a time. To keep playing, you have to make a decision. Swiping through men on the app like I was swiping through Netflix movie options felt degrading with a cap D, because I knew I was also on the receiving end of being quickly dismissed. But this is how I approached it: if the photos passed the preliminary visual tests (he’s not hugging a keg, he’s not shirtless, he's not pictured with other girls, I found him attractive, etc) I would swipe down to read the bio. 

This is a sample of one of the bios I read. Not sure what this guy's angle was. 

  • First he gently puts down Mennonites.
  • Then he offers inspirational advice- advising other gentlemen to dress well. (That or he is just bad with grammar and meant he likes to dress well and is a gentleman). 
  • Next he itemizes his body art like he is taking an inventory.
  • He finds the autonomy to shift gears hilarious. 
  • He has a Costco Membership, because everyone knows there is nothing sexier than a man who can buy 10 toothbrushes at a bulk warehouse price (actually pretty funny though). 
  • Lastly, he randomly lists a few objects, like he has given up on describing himself.

So if the candidate passed BOTH the visual and written test, I would swipe right. I ended up swiping right on 5 guys and matched with 2. If you match you get this fun screen and of course I chose to start a chat.

Match 1: The "Sarcastic" Guy

I had a feeling the boys I matched with were mad swiping right just to play the odds. They also had entertaining profiles (I like me a funny/clever guy). But boy, they seemed aloof once the in-app messaging began. With the first guy, I started the convo with a Chandler Bing quote because he claimed in his bio to be like him. But the convo fizzled out immediately (he was more of a Ross Geller if you asked me).


Match 2: The Wedding Date Seeker

The second guy was looking for wedding dates so he would appear well adjusted to his friends. I thought this was clever and told him so. The messaging went something like this: I said I also wanted to appear well adjusted, he said “let’s do it”, I asked how the application process worked, he asked if I wanted to throw my name into the hat, and then we argued over his perception of tall women. Let me explain: he claimed that all tall women were self conscious about dating shorter men, and I was thinking, "How can you speak for all tall women, besides you look at least 6’2 so why are you so anxious" - and then it was over and I was done with his misogynistic statements anyways.

Overall Review of the App

Maybe it was me but the guys I matched with didn't put much effort in and I wondered why they swiped yes to a tiny, unimpressed Asian to begin with. Truth is, the culture of online dating is flaky and that is the main reason why I wouldn’t recommend it. Maybe you’ll meet this one person you connect with really well, but you’ll have to sort through a bunch of so-sos before you get there? It's like shopping at Winners. Other bloggers have talked about the idea of scarcity, and how sometimes it is just better if we don't have infinite options or else we'll always wonder if we're missing out on something better. Too much choice can foster an unhealthy discontent in our hearts and I would agree.

Maybe one day when I’m looking for someone to eat sushi with, I’ll load Bumble back up, post more inviting photos, and give some of the bios with spelling errors a chance. But first (in-person) impressions are important to me, and you don’t get that from the web. More importantly, I trust that if I'm meant to date someone, that God is more than capable of making that happen and blessing that relationship to bits. I don't need to micromanage my life. So until next time, happy dating you single people - it's a jungle out there.

May 31, 2016

My Testimony of Faith

Recently I was baptized, which as a Christian, is a public declaration of faith. The physical act of baptism symbolizes the change that has taken place in our hearts and minds when we accept Jesus Christ into our lives. We were dead in our sin, but with Christ we are made alive and new. I am sharing my story with the hope that it will encourage others: 

Over the last few months through sermons, a bible study by Matt Chandler, and baptism classes I’ve been reminded of a lot of very true things, and I’ll be sharing some of these things in my testimony. But let me start with my childhood– although I’ve lived in Winnipeg for nearly 10 years, I grew up in Boissevain, MB – a small town of about 1500 people.

I didn’t grow up in a Christian family – however I never believed this put me at a disadvantage spiritually. Although Christian support was not a part of my upbringing, God provided me with an encouraging Christian community outside of home. Growing up in a small town allowed me to develop long-standing friendships with believers my age. These Christian friends and their parents would invite me to come to Vacation Bible School and Girl’s Club, and encouraged my parents to let me join in these communities.

So at a young age I began to learn about Jesus at these Christ-centered activities. But I had a very inquisitive mind and I would question and wonder about God and who He was. As I grew older, with these friends by my side, I found positive and fulfilling experiences in these Christian communities. I didn’t attend church, but I went to Junior and Senior Youth Group throughout school, and began to build a relationship with Jesus, learning about Him and seeing His character reflected in my friends and other mature Christians.

It wasn’t until I was 14 years old and attending a teen week at Gospel Light Bible Camp when I would say I became a follower of Christ. After Chapel, our camp pastor invited us to stay and talk, or pray, if we felt led. I noticed others were staying back so I stayed as well. I spoke with the Pastor and as we were talking about Jesus, I had this revelation wash over me. It became clear to me that I wanted Christ to take the throne in my life and live in my heart. So the pastor prayed with me – I asked for forgiveness of my sins, and I surrendered my life to Jesus. Making that choice was a life-changing decision – I was now free to serve and love God.

When I moved to Winnipeg after graduation I lost a lot of immediate Christian contacts.
I made new friends, but many of them didn’t share my convictions and I was slowly drifting away from God. But God was faithful. He has placed fellow Christians in my life during university, in my jobs, and in college throughout the years. I can look back now and see that God has woven some very special people into my life. God provided community for me, because we were never meant to walk this faith journey alone.

This past year has been an especially challenging year, with 2 close family members struggling in their health at the same time. Any of you who have had an illness in the family understands what an indescribable burden it can be. My family has been presented with very trying times in the past while, and I’ve been stressed and broken to the point where going to sleep was the only refuge my mind seemed to have. But throughout this year, God has been faithful – to my parents, he has provided amazingly supportive friends.

To me, I have been recently reminded of some very comforting truths through a sermon by Pastor Darryl at McDiarmid Alliance Church in Brandon and the Matt Chandler bible study. That is, God can redeem all the pain and suffering we endure for His greater purpose and will (Romans 8:28). How amazing is that? That every hardship we face could mean something, because God works all things, not just some things, but ALL things for the good of those who love Him. Sometimes in difficult times we ask “why me?” – well I ask “why not me?” – In our study, Matt pointed out the humbling truth that God doesn’t owe us anything. He doesn’t owe me a job, good health, a husband, or any of the earthly things we tend to overvalue. But God is with me and cares for me, and He is enough. My human mind is limited – I don’t know how the trials and tribulations of this world will work out, but God does. As Proverbs 3:5-6 states, instead of leaning on my own understanding, I should simply acknowledge God in all of my ways, and trust Him.

Psalm 9, verse 10 reads: “Those who know your name trust in you, for you, LORD, have never forsaken those who seek you.”

Today, I still make lots of mistakes, I’m still pretty selfish, and sometimes I believe the enemy’s lies, but I know that God continues to work in me. I don’t always know what God wants me to do, or where He wants me to go, but I want to be willing to push aside earthly things and selfish ambition to pursue Him and serve Him. I believe a life devoted to glorifying God is the most meaningful life possible and God will equip us with all we need to do so. I chose to get baptized because I was encouraged by Pastor Tony’s sermon earlier this year, and simply because God has commanded us to do so when we believe, as an act of faithful obedience to Him for others to see. We are saved by faith, not by acts, but these acts can serve a purpose.

God chose to redeem me when I was an unworthy sinner. There is nothing I can do that could earn the grace and love He gave me so freely, and there is nothing that can separate me from His love. I look forward to experiencing what God has planned for me as I press on through the highs and lows of this life. I think it amazing that God can go before me and also walk beside me at the same time- and together we’re going to walk, with purpose and hope towards the unimaginable glory that is yet to come.


I encourage you to turn to God in spite of all that life throws at us. Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. (1 Peter 5:7). Here are a couple of resources that have really resonated with me:

The Village Church (Matt Chandler is the lead pastor - he is honest yet encouraging, practical, and his messages aim straight at your heart). I heard about The Village Church many years ago and follow them on social media. Matt has my utmost respect, and a powerful testimony as well. TVC has many resources online including sermons. Matt's "To Live is Christ To Die is Gain" bible study is particularly good.

Beth Moore is an amazing woman of God and hilarious as well. Her Esther bible study provides a very enlightening study of scripture. I'm sure they are all very good though. God is definitely at work in her women's ministry, and any ladies out there should definitely check her studies out and follow her on Twitter! @BethMooreLPM