Tag Archive for: bumble

Speed Dating Do’s and Don’ts & Heartbreak Coach

Spring is here! We love new beginnings, the hope, and the possibility of a blank slate.

However, most new relationships form after another one has ended. So this week, we are looking at the other side of the dating equation – breakups.

And, our guest is flipping the script on heartache. Keishorne Scott, author and heartbreak coach, will share his strategies for healing after a breakup and setting boundaries. Plus he’ll also tell us which matches to avoid and to whom to give your precious heart.

But first, we have a steamy hot dating dish to serve up for you. Damona was recently interviewed by USA Today for a piece called,  “Speed dating is making a comeback as Gen Z ditches dating apps…and we shouldn’t be surprised.”


Is speed dating making a resurgence? Is the rhetoric around Gen Z ditching dating apps true? 

Damona says dating apps are all Gen Z has ever known, and while they’re frustrated with them, they often end up redownloading the apps after a short hiatus.

You CAN make dating apps work for you while and dip your toe into the IRL waters. Damona tells her clients to create a balanced portfolio for their dating life.

(06 51: ) Ready to give speed dating a try?

In speed dating, you only have 5-7 minutes to be memorable. It’s not about getting matches from everyone, it’s about getting matches with the right people.  

In her Dating Accelerator course, Damona talks about demonstrating your goals and values and having preloaded topics to talk about. Ask someone for their opinion on something benign like do they like the scent of grapefruit, are they a morning person or a night owl? 

Skip the, “Where do you work” and “Where are you from?” questions. They’re boring and won’t make you memorable.

(14:00) Planting the seeds of hope and possibility

If you don’t have your copy of “F The Fairy Tale” yet, you can grab a copy right now on Amazon on sale for a limited time! 


Keishorne Scott is an author, speaker, media personality, and relationship and heartbreak coach. 

His best-selling books include, “The Mouse, The Bird, The Dog and The Lion: 3 Men To Avoid and 1 to Marry” and “The Heartbreak Workbook: 10 Proven Strategies for Healing, Renewing and Recovering.” 

Keishorne has also been featured by Forbes, Good Morning America, BBC Radio, ABC News, MSN.com, and Marriage.com. 

(16:22) From heartbreak to happiness

Keishorne says, it’s possible to go from disappointment, frustration and heartbreak to a healthy relationship, though it takes time. He says that he had totake a step back, start to love myself, care about myself, invest in myself and then I started the healing process.”

Damona says he flipped the script. While most people might think that they are not good enough, Keishorne decided that someone wasn’t  good enough for him.

(20:51) What do a mouse, a bird, a dog and a lion have to do with love?

Keishorne breaks it down in his book, but shared:

  1. The Mouse is sneaky.
  2. The Bird doesn’t deal with conflict.
  3. The Dog will run out the gate if it’s left open and he’s also jealous.
  4. But the Lion is the king. He’ll be accountable. 

Damona appreciates the metaphors but wonders if we sometimes expect too much from our partners. She emphasizes the importance of balance in a relationship.

(30:49) How do you know you’re ready to move on?

Keishorne says everyone wants an exact answer for how long the process of healing after heartbreak will take. 

Healing is a non-negotiable and you have to do the work. Keishorne says, “there’s no timeline for it. Everybody heals and falls in love at their own pace.” 

Damona encourages people to push through the pain to seek healing. She quotes a line from her book, “F The Fairy Tale”, “discomfort is the feeling of change happening.”


Find Keishorne Scott on Instagram @keishornescott or learn more about his work by visiting Keishornescott.com.



Submit your questions on Instagram, X, TikTok, or Facebook, and hear Damona’s answers live in a future episode!

Text from Alexandra. 

Dear Damona,

I’m approaching 30 in 2 months, and I’ve been single for the past seven and a half years and recently been giving a shot at the dating world. I’ve had a very busy work life, so real dating was off the table. 

And in the past, I have invested too much in men who were not available. But I finally met someone who truly seems like he could be the right match for me. I thought we hit it off on our date and we have been intermittently texting throughout the day since. It was a Bumble match, and we met in person before he headed back to his home state. 

I don’t really like to be pushy, but I’m starting to doubt if he enjoyed the date as much as I did. I also do not know his dating intentions. 

Obviously, many more details that apply, but my main question is how frequently do I text? Do I worry about texting first, or reading too much into short messages and not too muchto much deeper conversations? 

It’s been five days. Mostly it’s hard because I really felt it with him and I don’t know where he stands.

Furniture Anniversary & Next Gen Dating

Did you know that the traditional gift for a 17th wedding anniversary is furniture? Damona says it’s perfect timing because she and her wonderful husband Seth are celebrating 17 years of marriage this week and they desperately need a new couch.

Why furniture you might ask? Well, some say it represents the security, comfort and familiarity of a marriage that has lasted almost 20 years. 

Funny enough, Damona compares a successful relationship to a table in her book, F The Fairy Tale. She says, “Think of a relationship like a table. If it’s built with a solid foundation, it can stand for years…You can build a table with only three legs, but it probably won’t last as long as one with four. And what will happen when you put something heavy on it?..”

In the end, a foundation built on the 4 pillars – goals, values, communication and trust – creates the space for a successful relationship future and the ability to overcome challenges. Grab a copy of Damona’s book F The Fairy Tale: Rewrite the Dating Myths and Live Your Own Love Story to learn more.

But enough of the past, let’s look ahead to the future. While she has been doing this work for over a decade, Damona still finds herself consumed by curiosity about where dating and relationships are headed. Recently, it dawned on her that the future of dating is sitting in her home, her daughter Addie.

And so, this week, we’re welcoming Damona’s teenage daughter, Addie Hoffman to Dates & Mates. She will be giving a , to give the Gen Z perspective on dating – and it’s surprisingly relatable to daters of all ages. 


But first we have the Dating Dish.


A New York Times article about tells the stories of five couples who married, divorced and then married their ex-spouses again. 

We thought this would be rare, but a study published in the Journal of Divorce and Remarriage estimated the number of people who remarry their ex spouse is actually about 10%.

Damona highlights some of her favorite stories of remarriage and shares some of her top takeaways.


Addie Hoffman is Damona’s 13-year-old daughter. This is Addie’s very first podcast appearance, but you can see her TV debut on America’s Funniest Videos on April 14th, and you’ll probably see her on stage at a comedy show in 10 years!

Addie identifies as cis-het and attends an all girls school.

(13:53) The Dating Life of a Young Gen Z 

At age 13, she is still a little young for dating, but Addie shares that she has some interest and wonders where she might meet future dates. 

Damona asks Addie where her friends have met their dates. “Most people find them in their extracurricular classes, but it’s hard because what if you don’t like anyone that does the sport you do?” 

(15:36) What Addie’s Learned From Damona & Seth

Damona asks Addie what she has learned from her parent’s relationship, so Addie shares a story about the family preparing for an event. It seems laughter is key!

When asked for another lesson, Addie jokes about mutual care. “If I have a partner who can rub my feet, or Theragun my back, we set!”

(18:07) Designing your dating destiny 

Damona says that when she was Addie’s age, she had already been sold the fairy. She recounts how she would write her name next to her crush’s last name. 

Damona asks Addie if she has considered marriage and kids saying that today’s daters don’t have to toe that line. 

Addie replies, “I think I would like to have kids and marriage. That sounds really weird coming out of my mouth. I’ve thought about it, but I’ve never said it.”



Submit your questions on Instagram, X, TikTok, or Facebook, and hear Damona’s answers live in a future episode!

In this unique take on Dear Damona, Damona answers questions from Addie and her teenage friends about dating: 

  • If you don’t think a person is a good match for your friend, is it okay to tell them they should break up?
  • How can you tell if someone is attracted to you?
  • How do you break up with someone if you know that you don’t have feelings for them anymore?

Dating With Intention & Taking A Break

Look, we all want to be dateable, but here’s the real question – would you date yourself? 

Before you start your dating journey, ask yourself, do I embody the type of person I am looking for? Because it’s not enough to be an expert dater, the search for your match goes deeper, within. We have to love and know ourselves first, and that takes time. In a fast-paced digital world with DMs and endless swiping, the texting trap and A.I. dating profiles, it can be hard to be intentional about how you’re dating.

But slow love is key to success in long-term relationships and even short-term relationships. And as our guests today say, it’s not about getting to a bunch of second and third dates, but going on dates that make you feel connected or curious, Damona often says.  

Those guests are none other than Julie Krafchick & Yue Xu, the hosts of Dateable! They will be discussing the true meaning of dating intentionally and how some daters may need to reframe their approach.


So you’ve probably heard Damona talk about dating burnout and a recent survey proves the point – statistically speaking.  The Survery Center on American Life released an article titled, “From Swiping To Sexting: The Enduring Gender Divide In American Dating And Relationships,” summarizing it’s recent American Perspectives Survey. 

According to the survey, 42% of participants said they are not currently dating anyone, but they’re open to the possibility. 41% said that they are not interested in dating anyone at the moment at all, and 11% of single Americans said that they are currently dating one person. Only 2% are dating more than one person. 

In the end, Damona suggests intentionality in dating as a solution. She says that by carefully selecting which matches we spend time with and limiting how and when we interact with the apps, can save us a lot of frustration. 

Damona says, “time is your most valuable resource. We’re not getting any more of it and the way you spend it – whether it’s swiping Tinder and being frustrated or showing up to a speed dating event or asking friends for setups, the way you spend your time does matter.”

(13:56) Hosts of the Dateable podcast, Julie Krafchick  & Yue 

This week we’re welcoming app designer and researcher, Julie Krafchick, & former dating coach, Yue Xu. They are active daters turned dating sociologists. Together they help daters challenge the way they think about modern dating so they can design the love life they’ve always wanted.  

They are the creators of Dateable, a podcast, community, and knowledge source for finding love in today’s world. Their work has been featured on CNN, NBC News, MSNBC, BET, and New York Public Radio, amongst others. 

 (15:48) Why is dating so hard today?

Julie and Yue shared their thoughts that dating might seem hard because of the expectations we put on the whole process, such as

  • Wanting our partners to be our best friend, therapist, life partner and fellow yogi.
  • Expecting our partners to always be available.
  • Expecting someone to prove they can before our forever person before we’ve decided we like them

 (18:18) It’s like we’re snacking and we’re full, but we keep on snacking! 

Damona compares today’s constant communication to snacking and the desire to have just a little more. 

Yue says, “Yes! The more we snack, the hungrier we get because we feel like there’s more for us to snack on. We also live in one big echo chamber with social media and the Internet. Everyone’s always echoing each other’s misery when it comes to dating. And misery loves company.”  

(25:14) Is my racket even hitting the ball here? 

Damona asks Yue to share her tennis analogy. After beginning tennis lessons recently, her coach told her one of the biggest mistakes beginners make is taking their eye off the ball. Yue mimics her coach, “Watch it make contact with your racquet before you see where it lands.”

Yue says, “ it’s such a great analogy for how we date today. Before we even assess if there’s a connection, if we truly even like this person, we’re already looking five years ahead.”

Find and follow Yue and Julie on Instagram @DateablePodcast And be sure to check out Dateable the podcast wherever you listen to Dates & Mates!


Submit your questions on Instagram, X, TikTok, or Facebook, and hear Damona’s answers live in a future episode!

Text from Anonymous

Hi Damona, do I need to take a break from dating to get my personal life in order?

She says, coming into 2023, I quit a very stressful and draining but decent paying job for two part-time jobs that I later found would each burn me out and set me back financially. Now, in 2024, I, like many educated and capable millennials, am struggling to jump back into the corporate and or otherwise known as safer and more financially secure jobs I’ve been dating.

 And despite my struggle to reposition myself back to a place of financial stability. I recently hit my opinion of a rock bottom. My financial life is a mess, and I’m currently living paycheck-to-paycheck, living at home with my parents, with increasing credit card debt merely to get by. I’m very educated and driven, so I know that this isn’t forever, even though it feels like I’m stuck. I’ve put off love and dating in the past many times to focus on my financial life, and admittedly, it’s never been this low. I desire healthy love and companionship now more than ever in my life. Plus, I’m approaching 30, so I don’t want to get stuck in a loop of not dating at all, which will put me completely out of the game of finding my person.

I know money isn’t everything, but I can’t help feeling like I may have to sit out dating again for a while to make improvements. The last two guys I dated were a bit of a reflection of this type of financial turmoil I’ve been experiencing, and I’m quite  

Should I sacrifice the next six months to a year to become a better me financially, for the type of man I want to attract?

The Big 500 & Savage Love

This is not just any old episode. It’s the 500th episode of Dates & Mates! 

Here to celebrate with us is the GOAT, the legend, the original dating columnist, Dan Savage. He’s coined several popular dating terms over the years and this week he will be revealing 2024’s newest dating trends, as well as his predictions for the year when it comes to dating and politics, polyamory and app drama. In this special episode, he joins Damona for a supersized Ask Dan and Dear Damona.

Looking back over the last 11 years of this podcast, we’ve done a lot of things. We covered the launch of Tinder, interviewed celebrity guests and had a variety of segments from the Hollywood Hookup to Damona’s Diatribe. 

But the biggest thing to happen since the launch of this podcast was the release of Damona’s first book, F the Fairy Tale, in January. 

That book is truly a labor of love. Three years in the making, the backbone of the book is really YOU – all the questions you’ve asked Damona over the years, all the people who have trusted her as their coach, all the wishes granted and hearts healed.

As Damona says in F The Fairy Tale, “So much has changed in dating and relationships in the last hundred years, and also in the last 11 years that I’ve been doing Dates & Mates. So why keep living by the old rules that governed love in a time when computers didn’t exist, smartphones were science fiction, and laws were in place to disadvantage many groups that are moving toward equality today?”

Hopefully this snippet from the book inspires you in your dating journey. 


Dan Savage is an author, media pundit, journalist and LGBT community activist. He is the author of Savage Love, a sex advice column that appeared originally in The Stranger, Seattle’s alternative weekly paper, in 1991 and is now syndicated across the United States and Canada. 

He’s also the host of the podcast, The Savage Love Cast, where he answers your sex questions and talks about politics. 

Dan is also the author of multiple books, including his most recent one, Savage Love from A to Z: Advice on Sex and Relationships, Dating and Mating, Exes and Extras. 

(8:01) Ghosting and Flaking… a new trend in dating and relationships? 

Damona asks Dan why ghosting seems to be on the rise. Dans suggests that it is tied to the fact that dating apps allow us to meet singles far outside our normal orbits. Because we don’t run much risk of running into them again, we don’t feel obligated to avoid the drama and social tension.

He makes an interesting observation though, “Ghosting seems to be one of those things we object to vociferously when someone does it to us, but we can rationalize when we do it to someone else because we don’t avoid the awkwardness of issuing a rejection.”

In the end, both Dan and Damona say that ghosting is wrong suggesting that daters follow the Golden Rule.

(20:55) Some Nonmonogamy Data Doesn’t Match Up

Damona mentions two important stats that seem to be in conflict. In an Ashley Madison study, 59% of Gen Z users said they preferred a polyamorous or open relationship and felt that one person could not fulfill all of their sexual needs. But in a Kinsey Institute study, it was reported that only 1 in 9 Americans has been in a polyamorous relationship. She says, “when I start doing the math, I’m like there’s a lot of people here, especially younger singles, who are saying, I prefer polyamory, but people aren’t necessarily acting on it.”

Dan’s theory is that people are using nonmonogamy to mean relationships that aren’t strictly monogamous rather than relationships that are fully open. “That could be a couple where there’s an understanding that there may be some outside sexual contact over the course of the many decades that they’re together, but they are invested in being perceived as a pair, a bonded couple, and not doing anything that might communicate to friends, families, neighbors that they’re anything other than monogamous.”

Dan believes that dater’s ultimate goal with this line of thinking is to create strong relationships. “And if you define cheating as unforgivable and always the end of a relationship, then when you consider how often cheating happens in committed relationships, you’ve made your relationship really brittle.”

(34:20) Dan’s New Dating Term – Tolyamory

Dan’s new term for the year is Tolyamory. From “tolerare”, which is the Latin for put up with, and “amor”, which is Latin not just for love, but also for lover. Dan combines them to become Tolyamory which describes being in a relationship with somebody who has cheated.

Dan explains that some people turn a blind eye because they’re economically or socially stuck. Others, he says, are just not interested in being physically intimate with their partners anymore and so see it as having a chore taken care of for them. Obviously, this isn’t ideal for anyone, but it does happen.


Find Dan on Instagram @DanSavage and check out The Savage Lovecast wherever you listen to Dates & Mates!



Submit your questions on Instagram, X, TikTok, or Facebook, and hear Damona’s answers live in a future episode!


IG DM from Jeff:

I’m fine doing vanilla stuff, but whenever it gets rough, I get shy. My girlfriend enjoys it when I’m dominant and I fantasize about being dominant, but it’s frustrating. My girlfriend doesn’t act awkward during sex at all, and she has a lot more experience than me. 

Maybe I just get worried about that because I compare myself to what I imagine all the other men she has been with. Or maybe it’s something else I don’t know, but I’m getting super frustrated with myself. 

She says I meet her sexual needs and that she does enjoy vanilla stuff, but we need to switch it up a little bit.

Email from L :

I (26F) am in a committed monogamous relationship with my bf (25M). We’ve been together for over three years and have a healthy, consistent sex life so far. We sort of recently became good friends with a couple. They live an hour away from us and we hang out with them about every other weekend when we can make the drive. We get along super well with them and have really enjoyed becoming closer over the last few months. We’ve discussed our sex lives with them before, but in relatively vague terms. 

My bf and I are open to group sex, but really want it to be with people we know or have a history with. We connect well with this couple and admittedly, I’ve been thinking… a lot…. about sex with them. How could we potentially hint that we’re interested? I really don’t want to mess up the friendship if they reject it or, worse, are weirded out. And what if they agree…? Will that mess our friendship up too maybe? I haven’t felt this pull toward a couple before and I just want to know what I would be getting us into. 

Email from Starting Fresh

Dear Damona, 

Thank you for your podcast and the work that you do. You seem very pro-long-term-relationship so I’m not sure if you’re the right person to ask but I love listening to you all the time and really trust your opinion and advice, so I wanted to reach out to you. 

After my 15-year-marriage ended last year I haven’t been able to start dating yet. I have been working on myself and doing a lot of therapy, but now I would like to date. However, I was raised in a conservative religious environment and never dated until meeting my ex and subsequently marrying him in a matter of months so I actually have no idea how to even start dating. I also don’t want a serious relationship, but I don’t want a one-night stand (I don’t think?!) – I want to date for fun, enjoy meeting someone new and learning more about myself. But I know nothing about dating at all and definitely nothing about dating for fun! How do I even start and how do I stay safe? Help! 

Love, Starting Fresh

Cosmo’s AI Advice & Love Languages Lesson

It’s 2024 and AI is here to stay. The question is, how will it impact your dating life? The answer…well, a lot. From photo generators to language models to analyzing past relationships and offering advice, we’re essentially on a collision course with the 2013 Joaquin Phoenix movie, Her. 

But it turns out that the news is not all bad – actually it’s pretty good if you’re willing to give it a listen! 

Cosmopolitan Magazine recently teamed up with Bumble to conduct an AI & Dating Survey, made up of over 5,000 singles and actively dating Gen Z’ers and Millennials ages 18 to 42. 

And here to break down the findings with us today is none other than the Deputy Editor of Cosmopolitan herself, Madeleine Reeves! She will be sharing key data, what we can expect and how to navigate the intersection of technology and love.

But first we have a steamy hot dating dish to serve up for you – New science concludes the love languages are nothing but fluff.


The very sexy Neuroscience News.com says: Debunking love myths. A new look at romance and science challenges the popular five love languages with evidence based research.

The study covers the work of Toronto based researcher, Amy Muse, which puts forward proof that most people like all of the love languages. The work proposes a balanced diet metaphor for expressing love and says that we need diverse and evolving expressions of affection in relationships. Ultimately, the new research says that Doctor Chapman’s measure pits the love languages against each other.

If you’ve read F The Fairy Tale, then you know that Damona has been skeptical of the love languages for some time despite their on-going popularity. She points out that “we are far more complex than any label on a dating app, any hashtag on TikTok, or any simple phrase could sum up.”


Madeleine Reeves is the deputy editor at Cosmopolitan and oversees all the sex, dating, and relationship content for Cosmo. 

With more than a decade of magazine industry experience in editing, writing, and reporting, she now recruits writers, sources, and pitches, and shapes stories and lineups for both the site and the print magazine. She also assigns and edits celebrity profiles, including Cosmo’s cover stories. 

(10:35) What stood out in Cosmopolitan and Bumble’s AI & Dating survey?

Madeleine shared that she was a little surprised to find that the survey results around AI & dating were overwhelmingly positive. “I thought it would be a bit more split as far as people’s eagerness to accept AI into their dating lives.” But she shared these key stats:

  • 71% of people say that they would use AI to help set up their profile
  • 81% say that they would share their whole messaging history with a dating bot coach to give them advice on what to do next
  • 59% say they would rather ask AI than their friends for help choosing a picture for their profile

Damona agrees that AI is going to be better than your friends, but she says a dating coach will always be more helpful than AI. “The difference between what I would say and what Bumble’s tools would say is they’re just going based on swipes, and I’m going based on connection and results.”

(14:48) Make AI your assistant, not your replacement.

Damona often suggests to listeners and clients to think of AI as a tool. “We put so much pressure on them to do all of the work for us, where if we can just use it as a data point of like, oh, well, that’s interesting. Now I know that piece and fill in the rest with our brains and our hearts, then it’s a lot more useful.”

Madeleine says that ended up being the thesis of the AI & Dating survey. “You don’t want to rely on these tools to do it all for you, because you want to use them to show up as authentically yourself, you know? So if you’re getting prompts of, here are some things you can say, you want to be personalizing those even further, using it as a jumping off point, using it as an assistant, and not as a replacement for yourself.”

(18:49) Madeleine’s hope for AI & Dating

Madeleine points out that if you’re online dating without the help of a coach, then you’re kind of just swiping based on how well the other person takes photos, writes quippy answers to prompts, and how well they flirt. She laughs when she says these aren’t the qualities she looks for in a partner, but she means it. Her hope is that it will be a good tool “for folks who maybe aren’t the best at writing a quippy, flirty phrase; that they can turn to these tools to help them do it in a way that feels authentic to them.”


Find Madeleine on Instagram @madeleinefrankreeves, Cosmopolitan on Instagram @Cosmopolitan and check out Cosmo & Bumble’s AI & Dating Study for yourself by visiting: https://www.cosmopolitan.com/sex-love/a46574186/ai-dating/



Submit your questions on Instagram, X, TikTok, or Facebook, and hear Damona’s answers live in a future episode!


IG DM from Anonymous

Hi Damona, I’m a new listener and I’ve really enjoyed your podcast and perspective! 

I’m in my late 20s and until recently I didn’t have a strong desire to be in a relationship. I was never really a boy crazy child or teen. I had crushes but was a shyer kid so didn’t put much into exploring that. In college I got a fair amount of attention but again I didn’t see the point in committing to a relationship because I felt like I had all my needs met with my social relationships. 

Now as an adult something about it feels physically uncomfortable. I know personally that I am so skeptical about people’s intentions and feel like I attract men that think I’m a challenge because I don’t actively seek their attention. I tried once going on a dating app but it felt really inauthentic. 

I’d love to just be set up by a friend but I’ve been told that they don’t think they know anyone good enough for me which is kind but not helpful. What do I do??

Bumble Bee Line & Wrong Guy Radar

Is Bumble Right For You? 

For years, Bumble has been one of the most popular apps because it makes daters feel safe and encourages women to take charge of their dating destiny.

However, since Bumble requires women to make the first move, it can cause a lot of anxiety around that initial message. 

What do you say? 

Should you be funny or ask a question? 

What if he doesn’t answer? 

Not so cool when the tables are turned is it?

To ease some of that anxiety, Damona gets an inside look at Bumble’s latest updates with Priti Joshi, VP of Strategy and Operations at Bumble.

But first, we have headlines:



(1:30) Halle Berry’s drunken reveal about her relationship history – and what you can learn from it

Halle’s new Instagram series, “Bad and Booshy,” spills some piping hot tea. She’s had quite the roller coaster of romantic partners over the years and reveals that she miiiiggght have a “wrong guy radar.” We’ve all been there, girl.


(6:14) Can algorithms influence what you find attractive?

A new study from the University of Deusto in Spain shows that AI might have more control over attraction than you think. Damona agrees and addst that algorithms may cause daters to lose out on a more diverse dating pool. 




Today’s guest is the wonderful Priti Joshi Vice President of Strategy & Operations at Bumble. Priti’s mission at Bumble is pretty straightforward: She wants to end misogyny and promote equality worldwide – and they’re tackling that head on in dating.

Huge and important initiatives aside, Priti’s here to talk to us about how you can optimize your Bumble profile and answer your questions about the platform – because even I have some questions about the latest updates!

(12:30) Priti gives us an in-depth look at the newest dating trends and themes that have spilled over from last year into 2021 and how you can get on board with the newest tips and tricks of dating especially when it comes to using dating apps. 

(15:38) Priti reveals how video dating has been a game changer for dating during the pandemic. It is likely to continue to be a staple in the world of dating apps due to its amazing safety benefits. 

(17:07) Bumble places a huge emphasis on safety while dating and has tons of fantastic features to make you super comfortable while dating online just like their photo verification features. 

(23:05) The functionality of Bumble’s dating app is not just based on swiping. There is a twist! Women are empowered to make the first move in hetero-relationships thus flipping dating norms on their head. Users are also presented with cards that include features such as horoscope details. It also includes information that many users view as most important to them allowing for better understanding between matches. 

(29:56) Priti reveals a great formula for engaging in conversation on dating apps to move the match to the next stage. Bumble has the coolest feature called The Bumble Game to help you get to know your matches on a more in-depth & creative level. 

(34:49) Like we mentioned earlier, virtual dating is likely the new norm of dating apps. Want to have the perfect first virtual date? Priti talks about stimulation being key to clicking with your match through virtual dates. 

(41:08) Beeline is another feature on Bumble that some users have questions about. Have a question about the matches on your Beeline? You’ll want to listen to this! 

Bumble is available to download worldwide in the App Store and Google Play, or online at bumble.com. Also visit their content hub, The Buzz (bumble.com/the-buzz), if you’re looking for more expert-driven insights and advice on how to date right now. 



Submit your questions Instagram, Twitter, or Facebook and hear our answers live on the show! Here’s what our listeners asked about this week:

  • (Alison): I’m getting back into app dating after a brief hiatus, I recreated my profile and totally revamped my pics, etc. I included as much as I could to call out my specific interest in a long term relationship on my profile, but some apps don’t allow for too many words so I could only go into so much detail. I am wondering, once I match with a man, how do I quickly filter out those men who aren’t really looking for what I’m looking for? What are the best questions to ask before even moving to a phone call/video date?
  • (Anonymous): I’m writing with a dilemma that is somewhat…unique. Last summer, I met a guy online who seemed like he would be a really great match. We have a ton in common, we have fun together, he makes me laugh, and he’s absolutely crazy about me. The issue is, his penis is small and the sex that we’ve attempted to have (twice) is unsatisfying because of the size. I turned him down because of it (having great sex is VERY important to me) but we still keep in touch and remain good friends. I’ve kept dating, but keep coming back to him in my mind because we really are a great match…outside of the sex issue. Have you had clients in similar boats before? I can’t tell if I’m making a mountain out of a mole hill or if this really is untenable.



The app solves many major challenges that Damona’s clients face in dating today:

  • You can keep your main number private
  • You can separate your personal and dating contacts
  • Plus, It’s easy to use and FREE.

We are proud to collaborate with an app that empowers modern daters to feel safe and secure. If you want more information, check out Damona’s video on when to give out your number to people you meet on dating apps. Click here!




Get Better Help: real therapy, convenient and affordable. Get started today and enjoy 10% off your first month. BetterHelp.com/datesandmates



The Bumble Blueprint & Linguistic Love Cues


The pandemic has been a wild rollercoaster ride of love for so many people. At the beginning Damona advised everyone should embrace virtual dates, then we moved onto social distance dates then back to virtual dates again. 

You wonder, “But Damona, how can you actually make a connection that way?”

Kyle and Olivia from Atlanta, met on Bumble, and we can’t wait to share with you how it all went down so you can learn how you too could find love right now.

But first, our dating dish.


The Year in Swipe

Tinder spills all the tea in 2020’s Year in Swipe Report.


Sparks Fly on Virtual Dates, But Not So Much in Real Life

If you’re feeling the connection on virtual dates, you might not have in-person chemistry. Damona weighs in. 


How to Win Someone Over

The Harvard Business Review teaches us how to win someone over. 



Kyle and Olivia found love in 2020 on Bumble. They share exactly how it happened and what timeline you can expect with your Bumble Boo – or POF Person, Tinder Tie-Up, Facebook Dating Friend with Benefits… etc. 




Unknown Speaker 0:00
It’s a tale as old as time. He’s handsome, debonair. She’s pretty and sweet. They lock eyes across the room.

Damona 0:10
Okay, hold on. Honey, you need to get your facts straight. Finding love today is more like Greece posts to get my

Unknown Speaker 0:18
swipe was invited to share my life.

Unknown Speaker 0:21
What does this text mean?

Unknown Speaker 0:22
Maybe he’s just not that into me is this relationship going anywhere,

Damona 0:26
you can keep waiting for the fairytale. Or you can get on board with the new rules of relationships. If you’ve read my advice in the LA Times, then you know, this ain’t your mama’s love advice. This is dates in mates with damona Hoffman. Hello, lovers, welcome to dates and mates, happy holidays, happy almost time for a vaccine day. Whoo, this pandemic, it’s been a wild roller coaster ride a love for so many people. You know, at the beginning, I advised you, you should embrace virtual dates. And then we moved into social distance dates. But then with the spike in numbers, I was like, Nah, you need to go back to the virtual dates. And you said but damona? Maybe you didn’t say it like that. But you were like, how can you actually make a connection that way. And I told the same thing to my clients. And I said that the process is the same, you know, I have a dating process. It’s the same even though it might be happening virtually. But it takes at least three months of really committing to a dating plan, usually, for my clients to finally see a shift. And I have to admit, in November, spirits were low, many of my clients wanted to throw in the towel. And some of them even doubted that system would still work in a pandemic. And they thought maybe this just wasn’t their season for love. After we did our single hit episode. So many people said to me, like yeah, I’m tapping out. Thanks for thanks for giving me the out Dimona, I’m out of here. But you know what I have, I got three different emails this week from clients who have moved literally from basically hopelessness into almost exclusivity in just a couple weeks. And I got to meet incredible couple who connected virtually at the height of the pandemic, and their relationship couldn’t be stronger. So I am a big believer in virtual love. And I also believe that even in the midst of a pandemic, you could still have your season to meet someone if you want it. I’ll be talking to Kyle and Olivia from Atlanta, they met on Bumble. And I cannot wait to share with you how it all went down. So you can learn how you too could find love right now. But first, you know, I like to do these headlines. And there’s a lot happening. Tinder spills all the tea in there 2020 year and swipe report. And watch out if you’re feeling the connection on virtual dates you might not have in person chemistry. Plus, the Harvard Business Review teaches us how to win someone over. Oh, that one is a brain bender. And there’s so much more coming up on dates and mates today. Now it’s time for the dish, these dating dish. Y’all know I love a good report. And Tinder. Tinder is the number one dating app. So I trust their data. And I love digging into it to know what’s really going on what’s happening on the front lines of dating apps today. So that I can tell you, and there is a lot in here that was super juicy. We covered this report last year, I think was the first year that they did it. And obviously, when you think back to December 2019, to where we are today, what a difference a year makes, obviously, more messaging and more swiping they were up nearly double digits by the end of the year compared with even just February of this year, which is usually high season for the dating apps between January and February. That’s when they see the big spike in new users. We spiked double digits beyond that. And of course the pickup game change the pickup lines started shifting even as early as March they started hearing a lot of quarantine and chill, you know, you know, they’re they can track what people are saying in their messages. They base people got real corny with this, they were like let’s be like COVID and catch each other or wash your hands so you can hold mine. I don’t recommend any pickup lines like that, but I’m sure it made a couple of people giggle and maybe led to some connections. And there were also evolutions in the emoji usage I covered last year how the facepalm was the big emoji of 2019 we have evolved it’s no longer the facepalm it’s not even in the top 10 maybe that’s just because We don’t want to have our hands in our face, because we know that we could transmit COVID that way.

Now the most common apps are the, you know, the shrug emoji that like, What? What’s up? everybody’s like, I don’t know what’s happening. It’s COVID. Of course, the the mask emoji that one that’s obviously genius, and toilet paper, and grocery carts, which I didn’t even know, were emojis. I literally didn’t know that those existed in the emoji keyboard. But now they’re really hot on Tinder. Should you use them to make a connection? I think you could do better, I think you could talk about something a little bit more with more depth to it. They also saw that politics were a hotter topic than before. People lay down those political deal breakers, right in their bios, I said that in episodes leading up to the election, and also mentions of Black Lives Matter on the platform were up 55 times amid, you know, you know what happened, you know, you know, so you know, Black Lives Matter has been a thing for a long time. But of course, this year, people are talking about it in a new way and talk of voting doubled in the months leading up to the 2020 election. So that’s what’s on everybody’s mind. But I really feel like there’s been a shift in the dating landscape. Even just since the election ended, I feel like people in the last month have become a lot more open to dating. But of course, as numbers are spiking, you have to be safe. So the New York Times tells us how you can make a connection on a virtual date. Of course, as I mentioned, at the top of the show, at the beginning of the pandemic, everybody turned to video dating to make connections like we were all just grabbing at straws, like I’m stuck here this house I need human connection. And then we really fatigued over the the whole virtual dates and just being on zoom for the whole day. Like now I have to have a zoom date. That’s not cute. So this article really examines how to make a connection over video and they told some stories of people who thought that they had a connection over video. But once they met face to face, they didn’t always feel that spark anymore. They interviewed this behavioral expert, she’s based in Amsterdam, so she has a name that I’m probably going to butcher and Marja ood is how I’m told it is said, people are going to correct me I’m sure on it. But I think things must be really different in Amsterdam, because she recommended that you want to really give a person a sense of what you look like on camera. So she said show yourself fully by standing up and turning around for a clear view of how you look even if it feels awkward. And no, no, not in my book. Okay, so you can play by Anne’s book, or you can play by the damona Hoffman dates and maids rule book, that is weird, do not do it, you also have to leave something to the imagination. And I really don’t think that it’s going to help you at all to to show your body moving on. Unless you have like a reason like you’re gonna make it cool. Like we’re gonna do a dance off. If the person is into dancer if even though they’ve had like six gmts or something. But otherwise, no, just stay seated and just be regular. Okay, just be normal, be your normal self.

And also focus on listening, of course and asking good questions, but also creating more interaction. You’ve heard me say this before gamify the date play 20 questions like really make it more than just like feeling like a work meeting. And then of course, they say, as soon as it’s safe, try to get offline and meet face to face as soon as possible. That is the same thing that I say. And I just did a refinery 29 interview last week and and the writer was asking me about how quickly it should progress if you’re in the virtual date phase. And now we can’t really go on social distance dates too easily. And I really feel like it’s the same timeline. It’s just that now we can’t, we can’t move offline as quickly. So you need to make those virtual dates feel a little bit juicy or but still after, I would say probably two or three max virtual dates, like put on your snow pants and figure out a way to actually connect face to face because I do think that face to face connection is really important. And you’re going to hear a little bit more about that experience as I talk to our Bumble couple in just a moment. And if you’re wondering how to make that great connection when you do meet face to face. This is this. This is a little bit of a twist for dates and mates. We actually took a page out of the Harvard Business review for you this week on how to win someone over. So this is not a dating article or study like we normally report on this was actually a study about lawyers and how they win over judges but producer Leone, I thought it was so fascinating because a lot of the advice that they give is the same thing that I tell my clients about mirroring, linguistic mirroring, and even body language mirroring. So in this article, which of course will link to in the show notes at dates and mates calm. It said, when you mirror your counterparts preferred communication style, they’re more likely to find you convincing or feel familiar or authentic. And that is really a big part of the connection. Like what what are people looking for, they’re not looking to be impressed by you, they’re not looking to have you list off all of the wonderful things about you and your your house and your boat, and your dog and your your job. And like all these things that that make us feel like we have value in today’s society know, somebody wants to feel like they connect with you that they feel like you’re real, and they feel seen by you and like you get them. And linguistic mirroring is something that happens naturally, when you feel a connection to someone but hot tip you can actually create more connection by intentionally mirroring their linguistic flow, like the way that they speak their inflection, their tone, their volume. And that’s just one little piece of the pie. Obviously, I have tons more than I could tell you. I share a lot of it with our Patreon friends with benefits in our little secret private Facebook group. So if you want to get more tips on flirting or more tips on virtual dates, make sure you check us out@patreon.com slash dates and mates you can join there for just five bucks. When I come back, I will have the cutest couple that I have ever seen. who met on Bumble in the middle of a pandemic. And I feel hopeful I’m in a relationship and they made me feel hopeful. So I’m really hoping that they make you feel hopeful as well. So stick around. Welcome back to dates and mates. I know you’ve probably thought once or twice about giving up on finding love in a pandemic. But it’s time to think about it just one more time and maybe change your mind. I am here with Kyle and Olivia, they live in Atlanta. And they found love on Bumble in 2020. Yes, in the middle of a pandemic. So if you’ve been down on the dating apps, give me a chance to prove you wrong today. Please help me give big smooches to my guests, Kyle and Olivia.

Unknown Speaker 12:50
Hi, guys.

Damona 12:52
I’m so glad you could be here with me. Let me tell you people are out here and these online dating streets struggling they are struggling. So first of all, congratulations to you for finding one another at a time like this. But I want to hear I want to hear everything I want to hear the good, the bad and the ugly, the ups and the downs. And how you came to find each other on Bumble finally. So you’re not new to dating apps. Right? Olivia, you’ve done this before you had done this before about the dance.

Unknown Speaker 13:30
The dance is a tango. And sometimes you win sometimes you lose. But I will say I’ve been on Tinder I’ve been on hinge I’ve been on Bumble Bumble has always been my favorite. To be honest. I think that people on Bumble are more serious about relationships or finding a relationship rather than the hookup culture that has now been created. And I can honestly say I was struggling to before I met Kyle of but I found it I decided to just try Bumble again at the top of the pandemic, there really wasn’t much going on. I was going to work on home structure and it seemed indefinite. And so I was balancing working from home I had a roommate at the time who did the bumblebee line and encouraged me to actually do it as well. And I did it first. In March. I think it was more of like the middle of March and match with some guys, but that fizzled out. And so I kind of was disheartened. So I was kind of in the mindset of I’m not doing it anymore. I don’t want to be on Bumble. This is terrible. The pandemics not gonna last that long. But then I really said no. Try it again. See what happens. So I said okay, fine. I’ll take the bat Beeline. I’ll do it one more time. And then I saw Kyle and my Beeline and I matched with him and we just kind of took it from there.

Damona 14:49
Whoo. I can’t wait to hear all the juiciness of what happened once you met but I got to hear from you, Kyle. Did you have a similar experience with dating apps before?

Unknown Speaker 14:59
Sure. Bumble was the only dating app that I had ever tried. I liked it so much because it puts women in the driver’s seat. And sometimes that’s half the battle. And, you know, you have to reach out to them like another apps that I’ve heard on, he had to reach out to them. He had to hope they’re interested, but it makes makes women kind of like, you know, the aggressor in a way, like, okay, like, I want you and you guys match. So I like that. I really like that because they have to come outside their comfort zone. So um, that’s why

Damona 15:42
I am seeing a look from Olivia right now. Like when you said it makes women the aggressor. What was that?

Unknown Speaker 15:47

Unknown Speaker 15:48
I guess my leg was kind of I feel like maybe I cheated at that. Because Because with the Beeline, what’s so great about is that you see guys that already like to you. So I kind of knew he was already interested. I wasn’t swiping to see if you know, if we match. It was kind of like, oh, he already likes me. So I can swipe. And we’re just an automatic match. I think I kind of cheated.

Damona 16:13
Was that your your strategy? Like? Did you have a dating app strategy?

Unknown Speaker 16:18
No, I honestly, this was my second time using the Beeline but I’ve never used the Beeline prior to the pandemic, I think that I was at a point where I wanted to leave through even more the people that I wasn’t interested in and kind of get a leg up because I do like Bumble because the woman takes the first has the first move. But at the same time, you could match or swipe with so many people and reach out to them. And then they don’t reply back or they take too long to reply back. So I think that the Beeline really helped me kind of propel or push faster into getting to know someone because I knew they already liked me. And it was a quicker start to the conversation. Yeah,

Unknown Speaker 16:58

Damona 16:59
Kyle, did you what How did you meet women before?

Unknown Speaker 17:04
Oh, before Bumble.

Damona 17:07
Yeah. Or had you been doing Bumble for a long time. And that was like your that was your main dating app squeeze.

Unknown Speaker 17:12
I was doing Bumble for all of 2019 um, and it was exhausting. be socially exhausting, because I was I was going on so many first dates. And you know, they would just like live said just fizzle out. And but I kept you know, going back to and then I would stop, you know, I, I kind of I am gonna chill for a minute, then I go back and then I was stopped. So before that on it. Honestly, I was pretty. I was pretty like oblivious. I was really like in my work. And that’s all I was doing. And I was in a long, like a long term relationship before that. So I really didn’t know anything about like the new dating world and dating apps or, you know, tenders or anything like that. So, um,

Damona 18:03
that’s the way to do it. Olivia, you got to get them while they’re fresh, fresh meat. You know, not all that baggage. All those you know, ideas about it, you just go in there, get the Beeline and snatch them. No. No, I do want to know how it actually worked. Once you matched How long did you communicate on the app before you move to the next step? And what was that next step when you did?

Unknown Speaker 18:31
Oh, wow. So I think it was maybe the same day, right? The same day we matched

Unknown Speaker 18:37

Unknown Speaker 18:37
We talked the same

Unknown Speaker 18:38
day we matched we talked for I think though the whole day on the app. And you know, just try to get a feel for each other. And, and I know, at that point, being on the app, I was asking questions, like we’re not getting off this app to you know, you answered this, this this I was

Damona 18:57
gonna interview Olivia sometimes,

Unknown Speaker 19:00
because I was asking my list of questions too. And I was gonna say like one thing about us, our profiles kind of have a similar message where his profile said, you know, I’m looking for somebody to take me off of this app. And my profile says something along the lines of like, I’m looking for the last gentleman out there to you know, match with and see where it goes. So when we got into a conversation on that it kind of just flowed into, okay, what do you like, how has the pandemic been for you? What have you been watching? What are you looking for? Are you looking for something serious? And we talked for the remaining remainder of the day into the evening? And then Kyle quickly told me he had work the next morning, so he couldn’t talk to me anymore. Um,

Damona 19:44
so sounds like your feelings were a little bit hurt in that moment.

Unknown Speaker 19:48
He still brings that up. But it was really nice because it to me is showing me my priorities. And I’m like, if he takes his priorities that seriously, I want to be one of those priorities. So I gave him my phone number. And then we quickly took it off the app the next day.

Damona 20:06
Okay, so talk me through that that step Did you gave you gave your phone number to him. Kyle, were you nervous to give her a call? What are you feeling?

Unknown Speaker 20:18
So story? Yes. So the story is, I, I like I have a very dry sensing where I have a very unique sense of humor. So what I did the next day, because I didn’t wait, I don’t believe in the whole all you got to wait a week, and I don’t have time for the game. So what I did was I text her and I told her, Hey, this is Brandon. And she’s like Brandon, Fran, and who? And I was like, you know, remember we met at the club? Or, you know, I made up some elaborate story. And she, she, she kept like, you know, who is this? Or like, when Where did I go to the club? Where what bars like, wow, you don’t remember our conversation, and all that. So finally, she asked for a picture. I’m like, Ah, man, I don’t want the joke to be over just yet. So I sent her a baby picture. And

Unknown Speaker 21:12
I love being blocked.

Unknown Speaker 21:13
Yeah. And I felt it. My spirit. So finally. Finally, I was just like, No, no, just kidding. This is Kyle. And yeah, before I got blocked, because I guess apparently I was

Damona 21:28
so close. Okay, so you’re still just like you were in the app messaging. And now you’re still just messaging but on your phone?

Unknown Speaker 21:35

Damona 21:36
So when did you make it make real like real contact?

Unknown Speaker 21:40
So we messaged on the phone once I realized he wasn’t Brandon. And the job was over. And it was kind of it was at first it was funny, because I’m like, No, this is Kyle. I’m saying it in the text. I was like, No, I don’t know. Kyle is Brandon. Okay, this is embarrassing. So you’re going to get blocked very quickly. Um, but the joke subsided and we started conversations, we started talking and I feel like that same day, he FaceTime me for the first time. And so this was April 8. Okay, sorry, talking April 7. Um, and so he based on me, we FaceTime every day after that. We went on our first virtual date which

Damona 22:18
Wait, hold on, before you get into the virtual day, I have to pause because the FaceTime This is a point of contention for me and a lot of my clients here. Did you just just out of the blue FaceTime? Or did you make a plan to cut to FaceTime her?

Unknown Speaker 22:35
I don’t know if I honestly, I don’t know, if I actually made a plan did we

Unknown Speaker 22:40
know you FaceTime me out of nowhere, which I know is quite taboo.

Unknown Speaker 22:43
I don’t know, you’re allowed to just FaceTime out of nowhere, you just meet someone, um,

Damona 22:48
did she pick up.

Unknown Speaker 22:50
So I picked up and I quickly had to get my life together. I didn’t miss the FaceTime call. Um, but because I was already home, I’m kind of doing the meat of Zoo meetings and things like that I was already okay. So when I picked up for him, I was able to talk to them. Um, and the conversation was very normal. And it was like I knew him. Like we were already friends. We talked, we crack jokes about things we were interested in, we talked about our day. Um, so it actually played out really well for us. And then we facetimed all the time after that really didn’t use the phone. And we texted a lot when we couldn’t talk. If he had meetings, I had meetings doing stuff. And I think we had that mutual respect of we don’t want to call her talk constantly, or didn’t want to be needy or desperate. But we had enough where I felt like at least for him as a guy. He was still showing interest in me. So I was feeding that back.

Damona 23:45
And at this point, in the pandemic, things were still very locked down. It’s not like you could just be like, hey, let’s go grab a drink, maybe would that have been what you would do in normal times? And the pace timing was sort of a substitute for a real date?

Unknown Speaker 23:59
Oh, yeah, definitely. Yeah, we definitely would have like to go out or anything like that, but we kind of had to, like do the virtual dates and things. So yeah, it was definitely a new experience. adjustment.

Damona 24:15
So how long are you going back and forth on FaceTime before you decide to actually mate?

Unknown Speaker 24:21
Wow. Oh, that

Unknown Speaker 24:23
was at least a month.

Unknown Speaker 24:26
Yeah, I think it was like a month.

Unknown Speaker 24:27
So I was a little bit more paranoid at the time. I had a roommate and she was a nurse at chellah. So Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta. So I was living with somebody who was saying the front lines is this is serious, this is going to get worse. And so he was very interested in doing virtual dates, but sending me food be Uber Eats or doordash. And so it was a sweet idea because we were supposed to eat dinner together and watch like a movie virtually or tune into what was it the Teddy Riley Baby, baby. So we watch different things together, but I I was like, I don’t First off, I’m not eating outside of my house. I don’t want to eat anything from anyone else. And then at the time, I also didn’t want to give him my address. I really didn’t know him.

Unknown Speaker 25:09
She shut me down.

Unknown Speaker 25:11
I shut him down a couple of times, um, for the food, but I gave it we gave it about a month. Mm hmm. Because everybody was saying at the time, you know, two weeks 14 days quarantining, so I kind of said, All right, it’s been a month, he hasn’t shown any symptoms. I talked to him sunup to sundown, and I haven’t heard him call once. So maybe we can meet. Um, and I was very particular about our meeting, it had to be outside. I wanted it to be during the day, and I wanted it to be at least close enough to me, or to you where we weren’t driving out of the way because you have to be safe, like as a woman and you have to be safe. And you know, during the panel, you know, side a lot of rule. Lots of rules somebody put up with

Damona 25:56
Kyle, did you have any? any qualms about meeting her? She’s living with a nurse who was on the front lines? Would did that make you nervous at all?

Unknown Speaker 26:07
Um, honestly, no. Because she was so like, in a bubble. Even though like, you know, that she mentioned her roommate was a nurse, but still, she was so much in her bubble. Like she said, I wouldn’t. I wasn’t even able to send food to her. She wasn’t even getting like takeout or anything. So I was like, Okay, well, if anybody would, you know, probably be mean, but. So we were fine with that. Yeah, we were I was fine with it.

Damona 26:32
Okay, so where did you go when you finally couldn’t meet up?

Unknown Speaker 26:37
When you walk?

Damona 26:41
You know, say that one more time.

Unknown Speaker 26:42
We took a walk. Where?

Unknown Speaker 26:45
Yeah. So he was still going into his office. I was working from home. And yeah, exactly. But it was social distance. There wasn’t a lot of people in his office. They were still being safe. But he was in his office during the day. So I took a lunch break from work. And I said, Okay, well, I’ll come see you on my lunch break. And then we can take a walk. He said he actually he actually came up with it. He said we could take a walk near his job because there was a kind of Plaza restaurant area near his job. So he said, I want to it all the time from my lunch break. So we could just take lunch together. And I said, Okay, well, I’m not eating anywhere, but we can take the walk. He said, Okay, so I dropped his job. And I got out the car. And we met for the first time we gave each other hug. We went on this walk

Damona 27:35
mask and you’re fully masked, right? Or no, this is before masks were mandated.

Unknown Speaker 27:40
Yeah. For mask or mandated. So we know masks. I’m walking talking with people weren’t around as if we saw people, we went a different way. Yeah. Um, you wanted to get out here.

Damona 27:56
I want to know what your first impressions were. Because that that transition is sometimes unexpected for people when they move from the from the app or from FaceTime to actually seeing each other. Kyle, what did you think the minute you first saw her in real life?

Unknown Speaker 28:12
So first off, she was as cute as she is now. Um, so what she was, she had just like a glow about her. And I really appreciated that. We just saw each other. And it was like, Oh, there you are. Oh, there you are. But it was it was like a comfortable feeling. Like there wasn’t there wasn’t any nervousness or anything like that. So that’s something that I definitely took notice of because we were on that walk. And it wasn’t like it wasn’t uncomfortable. I don’t think it was just very

Unknown Speaker 28:46
agreeable. I was definitely nervous

Unknown Speaker 28:49
a lot. I wasn’t.

Unknown Speaker 28:51
I was nervous, because I had talked to this person every day for a month. And I like you know, the fear. I guess for me, online dating is you grow this relationship with someone and then it could be a catfish, or that person could be crazy. Or they could have that intention. So it was a little nerve wracking to finally meet this guy that I was so interested in and like gel so well that I was like, Oh my gosh, I hope normal. I hope he likes me. I hope I was cute. I hope it doesn’t rain, I hope and just so many things. Because Yeah, so I think the thing I was definitely a little bit nervous. But as we walk the conversation flowed the same way it did on our own calls, so I felt more and more comfortable.

Damona 29:30
Could you tell she was nervous, Kyle?

Unknown Speaker 29:33
I couldn’t, honestly until until just now I didn’t know that she was nervous. But as we took our walk, we you could just tell that I think that you became more and more comfortable. And by the end of the walk, it was like Okay, so this is it. Yeah.

Damona 29:51
So considering there’s a pandemic, and you’re probably not on the app talking to other people, I’m guessing. I don’t want to step in any Thing awkward. No, we

Unknown Speaker 30:02
talked about that too. Um, I wasn’t talking to anybody. When I was in when I initially matched with Kyle, I matched with other guys. But our conversation went so well. And I really was losing hope. So I was kind of like, you know what this conversation so I’ll focus only on this person. And so I didn’t have anybody else. I was juggling at the time it was solely talking

Unknown Speaker 30:23
to him. Yeah. When when we matched, and we started talking, um, I think after we FaceTime, I completely like just, even though even though we didn’t have that initial conversation of exclusivity, I like, put my thing on Do Not Disturb. Because I don’t like no distractions or anything like cool. I want to focus on this. And I think even I’m sorry, to whoever or she’s listening. But somebody gave me their number. Wow, like we were in, I just didn’t even use it. Right. So they’re kind of just out there in the lurch.

Damona 31:02
Oh, but that happens so much, right? That happens a lot. These sort of unmet expectations. I also wanted to address what you said Olivia, about, that the nervousness coming from all that expectation, you’d spent a month getting to know each other. And usually in regular times, I would tell my clients move offline as quickly as possible, you need to see if this is the real deal in the real world. And so there’s less expectation, but you can’t do that in the middle of a pandemic. And even though we had a summer that was a little bit more lacks, in a lot of places where I’m in Los Angeles, things are locked down, and no outdoor dining whatsoever. And a lot of my a lot of my clients and listeners in different places, as the weather is turning, they can’t do dates. They can’t do dates outdoors anymore. And they’re really struggling with that moving the relationship forward. But that fear of what if what if he’s not what I expected him to be, can sometimes keep you in that state of limbo?

Unknown Speaker 32:08
No, definitely. I think that it was a, a not a big fear, especially not on the first date. Because I had, I had gone through the rinse and repeat of online dating where you go on a date with somebody, and maybe it works and it’s great and you want another date and then somehow it fizzles out or it just you know, on that first date, this is never happening again. So I kind of walked into it like okay, this is something that never happens again. I guess I just chalked up another month of my life, doing the rinse and repeat of online dating. But I did go into it very hopeful because we had such a great year. Yeah, it’s like I can’t I know it sounds really cliche, but it’s like I knew him already. It’s like, we were already friends. It was like he just meshed so well with me. And I mesh so well with him that it just really worked. And like he said, I kind of got more comfortable throughout the date itself, because we ended up sitting down on some steps that outside of a church. And then I kind of just leaned and put my head on his shoulder and he put his head on mine. And then I think in that moment I knew okay. Yeah, see where this goes. And I think that we walked back to my car, he walking back to my car, and we were both on conference calls. So we’re still trying to work from home and I under I appreciated his hustle, hustle. I appreciated him being understanding that I slept at work he slashed to where it was a lot of things that we were still making sure that our priorities got taken care of. But we were still making sure we had time for one another.

Damona 33:39
Do you think that you did something different in the staging process? And I’m also curious, do you think COVID and the pandemic and lockdown had an effect on YouTube being able to meet Do you think it would have played out? Maybe differently? If you had met it another time?

Unknown Speaker 34:00
I always say yes. I always say I don’t think that we would have met at a pandemic because

Damona 34:06
I or outside of a pandemic.

Unknown Speaker 34:08
Yeah, outside the pandemic. It was just that that point. I feel like I was more like I’m kind of tired of dating and like when the pandemic hit, I was just like, Alright, let’s see, just one more time. That was my one more time. So it was Kismet, obviously. But yeah, that was my one more time but I always say if it was regular. Now, because I was doing that already the year before I would like have long hiatuses of just not going back on Bumble.

Damona 34:43
What would you say was different? I mean, aside from the global pandemic, do you feel like it had something to do with the way that you paced the relationship getting to know each other over FaceTime or something else that was happening internally.

Unknown Speaker 35:00
Oh, um, we definitely FaceTime more that helped, um, probably more than like when I would, when I was dating previously, that really helped because that believe it or not gave some type of interaction more interaction than just regular talking on the phone. You know, I got to we got to see each other laugh, which is really important. We got to like, as as funny as it may sound like each other in the eye when we’re talking. So it definitely added to the closest right before we met. Mm hmm.

Unknown Speaker 35:41
Was it the same,

Unknown Speaker 35:41
I always say, we would have probably met outside of the pandemic, I think it would have just taken us a little bit longer. I don’t only because he has friends that were in the same area, like people, he has this other business partners, friends, things like that. He, they were in the same place as me and different events the year prior, like during Halloween and things like that, when we were actually able to be out. And so I said, You know, I probably would have ended up at an event you were at, and then we may have met and started talking. But then he says I would have been focused on doing whatever I was doing, I was able to pay attention to you. I would have made you like hello, hi, I would have still pursued you with my personality. But I

Unknown Speaker 36:26
don’t know, I don’t I don’t think so personally, but she says that thing, you know, maybe

Damona 36:31
funny. My husband who was actually on a couple episodes ago, when we met we actually had some mutual friends in common. But we met online. And we know of at least two parties that we were both at and may or may not have met but he says he wouldn’t. He was like, he’s very introverted. He probably wouldn’t have have said anything to me. So like through the app, he was able to gain the confidence and find the right words. And yeah, you know, make the make the right moves. I’m curious how long before you had an actual real date? Or have you? Have you even had a real date? Like, as much as we can in a pandemic? Okay,

Unknown Speaker 37:13
we actually did have our real day and it was perfect because it

Unknown Speaker 37:19
was cookie friendly.

Unknown Speaker 37:19
Yeah, it was inadvertently quote COVID friendly. So we went to the driving. And we went to yet we went to go see a movie at the drive in. But you see bad boys for life? Yeah. So yeah, we went to we went to see bad boys for life. And that tacos first we got tacos from my favorite taco spot. And yeah, and it was just us in the car watching the movie. And I think that it was, that was a great intimate moment for us. Because just us very, right. There’s nobody, like, you know, popcorn spilling on you because somebody else and further, you know, the back or whatever. So it was good. That was our I believe that was our first one. Yeah, we

Unknown Speaker 38:07
hung out. Like I came over and watch movies at his house once I realized that he wasn’t weird and that this was Um, but yeah, we hung out at his house. And then he said, You know, I’m, I want us to do a date. I have a plan. And so that’s one thing that I really appreciate about him is that he is very take charge. And he is very romantic, even though he thinks he’s not I’m very like, into romcoms. He’s, but he’s very romancing and he made a plan. And he said, We’re going somewhere somewhere. Okay, whatever. It was kind of a surprise for me. You didn’t tell me where we were going. He said, we’re gonna get tacos with you both love tacos. So this was perfect. And then he was like, and then we pulled up and I’m like, I’ve been here before. sighs Oh, gosh,

Unknown Speaker 38:48
we’re gonna drive

Unknown Speaker 38:49
and he’s like, yeah, we want to drive in. I want to take you on a day to something COVID friendly, cuz I know you didn’t want to be outside of the house. So I really appreciated it and taking the time to make sure that I was comfortable. And then like you said it was more of an intimate date. Because it was us it was our food. There was nobody really around, you’re playing on the radio. So it was really, really nice and really sweet. And so that was our first in person real date.

Damona 39:15
It’s like the 1950s is kind of romantic. You have your own little bubble there. So speaking of speaking of your bubble, what does it look like? Now? How have you How has the relationship progressed? And like? Olivia, do you have different rules now? Are you eating at other people’s houses? Are you eating at the same house? What’s going on?

Unknown Speaker 39:38
Um, I think I’m, I’m a little bit less with him at least, but like less cautious. I think that we spend a lot of time together whether I’m at his house or he’s at my house. But I don’t think that outside of our relationship. We i’m not i’m still very mask oriented. We have hand sanitizer in our cars. I actually bought him mask, I put masks in his car. And it kind of turned because where I was. So trying to be on guard and trying to set the tone of we need to be careful, we need to be cautious. You need to wear your mask. I think there was a point in what, June or July where I would just get out of the car to go to the supermarket and his keys fully man, I

Unknown Speaker 40:18
don’t have my mask on. And she

Unknown Speaker 40:20
said, What are you doing? And I’m like, What do you mean? So it kind of shifted. And so now it keeps me on top of things, because I’m like, trying to remember Oh, yeah, mask everything. So I think it kind of works out, I feel like our relationship works really well because of a balance. And we’re very balanced in the sense of being precautious for one another, and we do eat out. But where we eat, we make sure the restaurant social distance that they’re wearing masks, we wear masks, when we’re around other people, we tend to be outside, so we’re eating out less now that it’s colder in Atlanta. But um, I think I think that we try to be as cautious as we can. Yeah, um, especially the longer we’re dating, you know, now we’re looking at, you know, blending the families, having my parents meet his parents, having him meet my parents, he’s met my dad, my needs met my sister. So just trying to be cautious in those ways too. Because as we get, you know, as we continue to grow our bond, we don’t want to miss out on the opportunity to continue our life together and stay in just that bubble, our bubble has to somewhat expand just a little bit, just a little bit. But we want to make sure at least I don’t want to be free. But I want to make sure that we can still move forward and progress forward in a positive manner, we

Unknown Speaker 41:37
still have to have those temples of different moments where as long as there’s social distance, and it’s safe for us to continue our relationship as normal as we can.

Damona 41:50
That’s all we’re striving for. As we can be, what advice, tips, inspiration do you have for anyone listening? Who is at this point where so many of my listeners have written in about this phase of COVID and being locked down again. And just the fatigue, they’re fatigued of dating apps, they’re fatigued of texts that go nowhere? They’re just, you know, overwhelmed by the fear of COVID? And how do you even date when you can’t even leave your house? What would you say to them,

Unknown Speaker 42:25
um, it’s possible, it’s very, very possible, you have to be a little more creative. And honestly, you’re going to, this is a great way to weed some some people out, because all you have is conversation, it depends on your level of like, you know, safety as far as COVID goes, but you all you have this conversation with us, I think is great that we met during the pandemic, if you know, the pandemic itself is very unfortunate. But we had our relationship in reverse. We were, we couldn’t go anywhere. So everything was just, you know, finding things to do around the house. Like we we did games where we would know each like find out about each other and ask questions. We had game nights, we had all kinds of stuff. So it makes you more creative. And we didn’t, we didn’t go out like barely, we barely went out. So now we’re just it’s like everyday life. And we did that first. So you have to be ready to, you know, if you do talk to somebody during a pandemic, you have to be ready to do, do things kind of reverse and really get to know them. And it’s honestly, it’s pretty rewarding to them.

Unknown Speaker 43:47
No, definitely, I think my advice would be to always be your genuine self, especially right now. I think that some of the conversations or some of the interactions that other people will have, be open to a friendship. I think that’s also something I think that when I met him and I smashed with him, I was like, Okay, if I get a great guy that I can talk to, and another friend that I can make in this pandemic, then that would be great to because at this point, I had a roommate, so I had social interaction. And I was doing some parties with my sister in New York and her friends. So I had some type of social interaction, but it would have been It was like, Okay, I’m gonna get something great out of this one way or the other. And then sometimes I think that when you go into online dating, it can be disheartening. But I’m, once again, I know it sounds cliche, but he or she is out there. And I think you just have to have the patience to and to not take all the losses or all the bad apples and take them personally. It’s just whatever that person is carrying or moving within life, then that’s how they’re showing up but just kind of see it through. Sometimes you might need to take a little break from it, take a breather, refocus, do something else and then come back to it with her. fresher mind, but always be your genuine self look for laughs look for a good time because it’s it can be really bleak with the pandemic right now. And everybody’s dealing with it in different ways. People are morning people, there’s a lot of grief, a lot of concerns with mental health. So, you know, just try to make connections and see where those connections grow. Like give it the time because right now we have nothing but time. Yep.

Damona 45:24
Well, I couldn’t have said it better myself. Thank you so much for being here and for sharing your amazing love story. You two are adorable together. I know our listeners can’t see you. But you’ll just have to take my word for it. And I just wish her the two of you together. The two of you together are amazing. And I just wish you continued love and happiness and health. together.

Unknown Speaker 45:48
You Sandy.

Damona 45:50
Thank you. This has been Episode 340 of dates and mates. I’m at damona Hoffman on all of the socials. Please DM me your questions. Let me know what you’d like to know. If you’re struggling to find love on dating apps. Let me know where you’re getting stuck. And I could answer your question on a future episode. You can also feel free to send me a message about what you learned from today’s episode. Go ahead and DM me and send me a voice memo. I’d love to hear your voice. You sat here and listen to my voice all this time. I want to hear yours. And you can find me on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook at damona Hoffman. We have just one more episode left for 2020. But the search for Love does not rest. So neither will I I will be doing my weekly q&a as for anyone who needs support over the holidays in my patreon Friends with Benefits group that you can join for just five bucks@patreon.com slash dates and mates. And there’s a whole group of supportive people who are going through the same thing you are and would love to invite you into the circle again, that’s patreon.com slash dates and mates. Next week, we have another dear demona on tap. So do send me your questions. DM me if you can or leave me a voicemail at 424-246-6255 Again, that’s 424-246-6255 we’ll be back again next. I already said that. Let me just say also, and don’t forget to mark Don’t forget to subscribe and don’t forget to subscribe to the show and rate and review. If you are subscribed, you will get our episodes in January. We are moving to a new day on Tuesday. So if you’re not subscribed, you might miss out join the club. Until next week. I wish you happy dating


Election Day & Dating


Since the 2016 election, we’ve noticed that politics are increasingly important to daters. In honor of Election Day, Damona sits down with Cyberdating Expert Julie Spira to talk dating across party lines. Here’s the rundown:


Why are fertility rates declining?

The National Center for Health Statistics reports that fertility rates in the United States are down. Damona breaks down what this means and why it’s happening.

Meghan Markle’s “Pre-Pup” Pregnancy Contract

You’ve heard of a prenup but have you ever heard of a “pre-pup”? According to Daily Mail, Meghan Markle made her ex-husband sign a pre-pregnancy contract. Damona discusses the exact stipulations of Markle’s pre-pregnancy contract. Would you use a pre-pregnancy contract?

Ghosters: the end is nigh

Bumble thinks they have found the solution to ghosting! The Telegraph reports that Bumble will be prompting users to respond sooner and to take a “No Ghosting Vow”. Will this actually solve the problem? Damona has thoughts.


Julie Spira is America’s Top Online Dating Expert, Digital Matchmaker, and the CEO of Cyber-Dating Expert. She has been coaching singles on finding love online for almost 25 years and has a great deal of personal experience when it comes to dating across party lines. We talked about a lot:

  • Julie’s research on couples with different political opinions
  • Politics on dating sites and in dating profiles
  • Do single women date across party lines?
  • Who talks about politics more on dates: men or women
  • What political issues split up relationships the most?
  • What this means for your online dating experience

Look out for her forthcoming book, “Love in the Age of Trump: How Politics is Polarizing Relationships.” For more info about the book you can visit Loveintheageoftrump.com.



Submit your questions Instagram, Twitter, or Facebook and hear our answers live on the show! Here’s what our listeners asked about this week:

  • What do you do when your spouse has gained a lot of weight and you’re no longer attracted to them?
  • When do you consider yourself to have been ghosted?
  • Tips to keep the conversation going on the first date
  • How to ask your boyfriend to move with you to another country
  • If you find out your boyfriend has a wife, should you tell her?


Damona closes the show with a Hollywood Hookup for Ariana Grande. Who do you think would be a good match for Ariana? We have some suggestions.


Let our friends at Modcloth help you out! Modcloth is the perfect place to get your cute updates to your fall wardrobe PLUS the ModStylist Team is there to help you style your new pieces. Get 15% off your purchase of $100 or more at modcloth.com by entering the code “datesandmates” at checkout.

Bossip TV & The Tinder Trick

We TV’s Bossip TV hosts Danielle ‘Dani’ Canada & Alana Danielle Gatling hit the headlines with Damona including the Tinder social experiment that swept NYC, Bumble Bizz & Bumble BFF, and the engagement of Priyanka Chopra & Nick Jonas (which Dates & Mates predicted back in episode 220). Questions from listeners include how to Facebook sleuth on your man and how much makeup a woman should wear to a date.



Dozens of men tricked into a dating competition

Last week, a Tinder user named Natasha Aponte coordinated a massive meeting of those she matched with on Tinder in Union Square. Those men that stayed participated in a literal competition where the winner allegedly got to go on a date with her. Apparently done as a commentary on modern dating, do you think this went too far? You can read more via CBS News here.

You can now turn off dating mode on Bumble

Bumble Biz and Bumble BFF have been around for a minute now, but you can now elect to turn off the dating portion of the app entirely, making it clear you’re only there for professional or platonic connection. You can read more via PopSugar here.

Nick Jonas and Priyanka Chopra confirm engagement

We called it! Nick Jonas and Priyanka Chopra have officially announced their engagement, rumored to have sealed the deal sometime last month. You can read more via NJ.com here.


We pull the best questions posted on The Textpert App, including:

  • What to do if your fiance was messaging another woman
  • If you should wear makeup when meeting a guy for the first time

And many more . . .


We got Monique’s lightning fast love advice in another installment of Dating Dot Dot

  1. _________ is always sexy
  2. _________ is never sexy
  3. The biggest red flag on a dating profile is_________
  4. The most common first date mistake is _________
  5. The most important quality in a wife is_________
  6. The most important quality in a husband is _________

Try FabFitFun.com and get $10 off your first box with the code DatesandMates

Visit DatesandMates.com for your free dating or relationship e-course. Pick the one that fits your relationship status!

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Catch Bossip TV Thursdays on We TV at 10 p.m. ET.


Married at First Sight & Relationship Rituals

Our guest co-host this week was Rhonda Richards-Smith. Rhonda is an award-winning psychotherapist and relationship expert whose advice has been featured everywhere from the Huffington Post to Teen Vogue to US Weekly. But that’s not all! We also had a very special appearance from Pastor Calvin of the reality show Married at First Sight.


Duke looks to change its dating policy

Up until now, Duke University has given its blessing to relationship between students and teachers as long as the student is not currently enrolled in the professor’s class, working on a research project with them, or being mentored by them. However, it’s a sign of the times that the Academic Council is now looking to shake things up. You can read more via Herald Sun here.

Which Olympic athletes are hooking up the most?

Bumble is proving popular at this year’s Olympic games, and the details are in regarding who is taking advantage of the event for a different kind of physical activity. Which sport has the athletes that are getting it on the most? You can find out via TMZ here.

Amy Schumer ties the knot

Schumer’s only been dating chef Chris Fischer for a few months, but they recently made things official in a small ceremony in Malibu this past weekend. It was a low-key event with only around 80 in attendance, but the couple seem happy and we wish them all the best. You can read more via Huffington Post here.


We pull the best questions posted on The Textpert App and BlackPeopleMeet.com, including:

  • How to handle a husband liking some old flame’s posts on social media
  • What to do when your best friend is dating your ex
  • What to do if you’re depressed over a breakup

And many more . . .