I filled forms about my interests, my opinions and my personal goals – which was having a family – something I’d been too frightened to mention to my exes in the early days for fear of scaring them off.
“But the men I was introduced to were told what I wanted and shared those dreams. From the off we were on the same page and then it was only a matter of finding someone I also found physically attractive and that was Mark, the third man I met.” Wilkinson is far from alone.
But is this a trend that could change the very nature of romance and turn long-term commitment into a thing of the past? There is striking evidence to suggest that the web is causing social change.
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Over the past decade, she’s tried ten websites, had dates with 40 men and chatted — online or over the phone — to countless other potential suitors.
But after one serious heartbreak and hundreds of pounds spent on subscription fees, love still eludes her.‘In many ways, internet dating is a great way to meet people, but it’s such a whirlwind of highs and lows,’ she says.
Instead of interacting with the people around her, she chose to search for a companion elsewhere online.
I wondered to myself, is this what online dating has done to us?
One in five relationships in the UK starts online, according to recent surveys, and almost half of all British singles have searched for love on the internet.
Just today, nine million Britons will log on looking for love.
Is it creating a new reality in which people actively avoid real-life interactions?
Of course, others have worried about these sorts of questions before.
People who use dating sites are choosing matches based on criteria that are highly correlated with political preferences, and social scientists fear that will go a long way toward making us less tolerant citizens.