Dating post lockdown: Are you an eager beaver or a hesi-dater?

Miriam Kerins has some advice for people who are looking forward to getting back on the dating scene…

The onset of the pandemic two years ago turned the entire ‘traditional’ dating scene upside down.  There was no more meeting for drinks after work, no hooking up in a nightclub, and no dinner à deux of a Saturday night. Instead, many singletons across County Roscommon went online to engage in a series of virtual dates; or, if they were lucky, partake of a socially distant, masked walk! So much for good old-fashioned romance!

  However, with over 90 per cent of the population now vaccinated against coronavirus, it’s safe to say that the so-called traditional face-to-face dating scene has re-emerged almost overnight.   

  Therefore, if you’re someone who is, in the aftermath of lockdown, loneliness and isolation, now eagerly preparing yourself to get back on the dating scene, but are feeling a bit emotionally hesitant, (as in, you’re hesi-dating – see what we did there), then check out our top three tips below.

Take it slowly

If you were comfortable sticking to virtual dates during the pandemic, you may not feel you’re ready to meet up with someone in person, and that’s totally understandable. We all have different needs and ideas regarding what’s right for us at any given time. With that in mind, why not go ahead and set that date, but arrange it for a few weeks down the line; that way you’re not just allowing yourself the time to adjust, you’re also giving society, as a whole, time to modify itself to its new, post-Covid beginnings.  

Vaccine status?

In as much as we’re all emerging from this pandemic with extensive banana bread, and making the perfect ‘fakeaway’ knowledge, there’s now the need for some of us to know whether or not a potential date has been vaccinated. While some dating apps allow singletons to add a ‘badge’ to their profile in order to alert others as to their vaccine status, there is a question around what happens if a ‘match’ hasn’t specified this.

  In addition, what happens if you’re in a pub and make eye contact with someone you fancy who asks you out on the spot…do you broach the sticky subject there and then?

  My advice? Go for it! Politely ask them outright, because a potential partner’s vaccine status, (whatever it is), could also be a sign of their compatibility with you!

  Remember, you’re auditioning someone for the role of ‘romantic lead’ in your life, and, if their personal ‘take’ on the pandemic and their need to be vaccinated (or not) doesn’t gel with yours, they’re clearly not right for the part!

  Top tip! You could take the awkwardness out of the situation and open up the conversation by offering the other person information around your own vaccine status, and let them take it from there.

Make safety your priority

If, having taken all of the precautions you feel are needed to safeguard your own wellbeing, you’re still a ‘hesi-dater’, then I suggest you opt for an outdoor activity like going for a coffee at a local restaurant with outdoor seating. You could also go for a walk in a park to ‘people watch’, or even head to an adventure park for some fun outdoor pursuits. If you’ve got a dog, why not ask your date to join you and Fido on one of your daily walks!