Lonely During The Pandemic? Research Shows Disasters Are A Great Time To Find Real Love

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couple flirting outside during the pandemic

Are you single, lonely, and wishing you could find love with a romantic partner? Someone with whom you could hunker down during the remainder of the pandemic?

This has been such a time of isolation for singles, especially if you're a social person who likes to be around people often. Those feelings of loneliness are real, and very profound.

But what can you do about it? Restaurants have been closed on-and-off and the bars in some places have been shut down for countless months.

No one is getting together in real life, especially during the winter months when it's hard to spend too much time outdoors, and most classes are now delivered via some online video platform and not face-to-face.

Even though it seems like there are roadblocks at every turn, you can definitely still find love despite the pandemic.

In fact, this time of national disaster might be a great time to find a silver lining — in the form of a new relationship.

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Believe it or not, disasters are good for finding love.

While the Coronavirus has been rampant in the U.S., there have several other big disasters in recent history that have been studied for how they impact society.

Sociologists discovered that big events like this actually increase the interest in love and marriage!

When catastrophes happen and times are uncertain, the desire for companionship, love, and security tend to rise among singles.

According to Catherine Cohan, Ph.D. of Penn State University, "…in a life-threatening situation, people are motivated to reevaluate their lives, their goals, their futures, and their priorities…"

For example, after the initial shock of the Twin Towers coming down in New York City on 9/11, the wedding industry experienced a surge in business that fall, which is very unusual.

Typically, the biggest sales period is January to March, as brides prepare for June weddings. It was tragic, but the tragedy inspired people to prioritize what mattered in life. 

With that said, you can see how Covid-19 could encourage people to push themselves into the next phase of life, including seeking a committed relationship or even getting married!

How has Covid been good for dating?

Helen Fisher, a Ph.D. biological anthropologist who studied romantic love for 40 years, says that "the virus is a gift."

She points out that courtship has slowed down as people want to get to know each other before risking their health to have sex.

Many singles are now taking a more traditional approach to dating.

Since hooking up has been taken off the table for the vast majority, daters are spending time having real conversations and getting to know each other more slowly, in an effort to find a compatible partner worth meeting.

And it's not just younger singles, those who are over the age of 40 are feeling the change, too.

What's the best way to meet other singles during a pandemic?

Since people are not gathering much in groups right now, your best bet to find love is to look online or in dating apps.

And don’t just look at the photos — dig in and read some of those profiles.

Yes, you need to find someone attractive, but do they really need to be a 9 or 10 or meet a pre-conceived notion you have of what's attractive? Not if you're serious about connecting with a quality partner for lasting love.

Take into account their personality and value system. That’s what you're looking for in their write-up.

Do they have a good sense of humor? Which way do they lean politically? Do they say the type of relationship and partner they're seeking?

If they haven't written anything, that person may not be serious about love, so skip them.

Get to know several people.

Since you're not sleeping together, you don’t need to pick just one person. In fact, it’s far better not to narrow your options too quickly.

Give yourself time to get to know someone new.

What are you looking for? Do they call and not just text? Do they talk with you more than once a week while in this first qualifying stage? Are they willing to video chat where you can gauge your chemistry?

Watch to see if they seem open or tend not to talk much about themselves. When you're looking for an emotionally available partner, they will ask about you and will tell you about themselves as well.

Do you enjoy the conversation? Is it fun and easy? Do you like the sound of their voice?

RELATED: 6 Words Everyone's Using On Their Dating Profiles Amid The COVID-19 Pandemic

What should you talk about?

You can't just ask about how their week went if you want to get to know someone. You've got to dig a bit deeper and have a real conversation.

Ask about a fun childhood memory, the first place they want to go once the pandemic is over, or what they're watching on Netflix and why they like it.

You can talk about their taste in music, what sports they watch, how they feel about their family, and how they spent their free time.

Do they prefer the beach, mountains, or cities?

Be sure to have your own answers figured out, so you don't get caught off guard when they toss the same question back at you!

What are some questions to avoid?

If you're trying to bring out someone's best, don't ask about past romances or divorce. This will not put anyone at ease or be fun to discuss.

While you have your agenda to properly vet a partner, hold off a bit on the tough questions. Keep the conversation light and fun to see if you like each other first, so you can build rapport and make a good impression.

As you get to know each other and the process deepens, you will talk about these other things that are important.

But, it really helps to create some trust first, which takes time.

There are also benefits to video chats.

Texting is not a way to get to know someone, no matter how much fun it is to connect with fun banter. You need to talk on the phone to hear their voice and discover their comfort level.

Sometimes, people are great at texting but can't hold a decent conversation. Or, they're great on the phone, but there's just no spark in person.

That's why the video chat has become an essential step due to Covid. The benefit of video dates is that you can get a feel for the chemistry between the two of you.

You can see their facial expressions and body language. Most people read body language signals innately.

Many sites and apps have a video app built-in, so you don't even have to give out your phone number. You can certainly go from messaging on the site to video chat before you decide to meet.

The point is to get better at qualifying the people you meet to reduce your risk and exposure to the coronavirus.

You want to physically meet only a few who have real potential, rather than many like pre-Covid when you could have several coffee dates and end up kissing more than one person.

Right now, this is obviously not advisable.

What's a safe in-person date?

Some people are doing video dates. There are apps where you can both watch the same Netflix movie at the same time. Or read a chapter of a book and discuss it. And there are even online games you can play together from a distance.

Even though it's cold in parts of the country, you can grab a coffee and sit outside for an hour with a warm jacket. You might go for a walk or hike in a public place like a well-populated park. Outdoor ice skating could be fun.

When you're ready for the next level, there are some restaurants that take precautions and do well with social distancing between tables. Or, if you have an outdoor space at your home or apartment, you could get takeout and sit outside.

If you set the intention to find love and stay active, your chances of finding someone who wants a serious relationship are greater than last year at this time.

What do you have to lose? Give yourself a chance to find love by following the slower pace of dating during COVID and see what happens.

RELATED: 7 Steps To Continue Dating Safely & Find Your Soulmate In The Time Of Coronavirus

Ronnie Ann Ryan is a Love & Cosmic Coach who has shared her sound advice and practical magic for mindful dating, love, and life with thousands of successful single women for 19 years. Got the date scheduled and want to guarantee a second? Listen to her free audiobook "12 first date mistakes that ruin your chances for love."