I hate dating.
It’s superficial, it’s awkward, and it’s weird. People are never themselves, even if they try.
But the thing I hate most about the whole experience is that we treat each other like objects to consume rather than people to love. We have literally devalued the other person by forgetting their humanity.
But how did we get here? Broadly speaking, most historians agree that the rise of individualistic-consumerism led to the gradual devaluing of relationships. Now, when we buy something we think about how that thing will make us happy and almost never consider the person(s) we bought it from, let alone the child who will fish it out of landfill once you’re finished with it. Over time, the object for consumption became more important to us than the person that object connected us to.
So we turned material possessions into idols and then became obsessed with consumption. But that isn’t new news.
Then we took things a step further and assimilated this consumerist mindset into how we attract a mate. Now, people are objects too. So, when we date, we think about how they can make me happy rather than how I might make them happy.
Love was once defined as wholeheartedly giving oneself to another, but now we just swipe left or right as though we are shopping. And when we change our minds after a coffee date? No problem. The plethora of options gives us freedom to send a “sorry but I don’t think we’re compatible” text and move on.
Frankly, I find the whole thing dehumanising, and I think it’s just another example of how we have absorbed a consumerist culture into a human experience that should be valued more highly.
Think about it.
Weddings used to be considered a holy rite – even sacramental in some denominations – and yet now it is a £10-billion capitalist industry. We have literally commodified the sacred.
Or think about a woman’s ova. A man’s sperm. Sex. The human body itself. These are all for sale, making them objects to consume rather than people to love.
It’s no wander the majority of us suffer with crippling anxiety. The rise of individualism paradoxically meant that human person became devalued.
People are not people anymore. They’re things made for my consumption rather than created beings made in the image of God. I can pick them up or throw them away at any point, according to my desires.
I get mad when I feel like men are treating me like a sex-object instead of a human. And then I do the same back.
Everybody wants to have a partner, but who ever thinks about being a partner?
That is why I hate dating.
(But maybe it’s just me.)