The Surprising Reasons Why You're So Addicted To Online Dating

Discover why we're hooked on finding love.

Addicted to Online dating, dopamine ormalternative, Drazen_ | Canva

We live in an addictive world. Whether drugs, food, gambling, or Facebook, we all know spending too much time doing, "that thing". Some have multiple addictions: drinking excessively, dating multiple people, and eating the sweets the doctor told them to stay away from. These days, we're all about consuming more and giving less.

Those addictions are external. But when it comes to our inner selves, what do we most desire? Love.


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Here's the surprising reasons you're so addicted to online dating:

1. We want to be loved.

To feel the warming affection of another human being is the greatest "I want" of all. More than the ephemeral pleasure of substances, or gaining access to the next level in a video game. We want to look in another person's eyes and feel an ultimate connection. The special place where time and space cease to exist.

There is no whiskey superior, and one hundred likes on a social media post fail compared to the singular love given by another individual.


Woman likes dating profile, is she addicted to online dating Studio Romantic via Shutterstock

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2. You're not the only one who is hooked.

There are hundreds or thousands of people who have the potential to love us, each one at our fingertips. They exist on the other side of our computer. So close, yet so far away. Virtually representing a face but viscerally representing hope.


We find out if "they" want to love us, so we browse profiles. "I could be with this person or that person!", and then 'next page', "Oh look at him!", or "I must write her" (and "her", and "her", and "her" too). What happens is the dating site becomes a slot machine with human faces. Turn the page, spin the wheel, blink your eyes, and a new opportunity arises. You're addicted.

The liquor store closes at 2 a.m., and we stop eating when full, but the Internet is always open, and chances are your dating site 'remembers' you. You wake up to read emails and go to bed initiating new ones.

3. You're lacking in discipline.

The problem is our lack of discipline to focus on one or two people. We initiate contact with "someone special", until someone even more special emails us ten minutes later. Are people disposable, or are we chasing a high?


4. You do it because it feels good.

LL Cool J once wrote a song "I Need Love", where he serenades the affection of a young lady. If that song were written today, I'm sure he would include the rhyme, "When I'm alone and lonely wishing I had love, I log onto and get all I ever dreamed of". So the real question is this: Do we need love, or do we need to love ourselves?

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5. You need a fix.

If you have a bleeding heart, putting on a band-aid temporarily stops the hemorrhaging, but you'll need hundreds more. Likewise, if you are online dating and plowing through profiles, no infinite number can make you happy if you aren't happy with yourself.


Never has the potential of love been so accessible as with online dating. For some, this chase is addictive. Years from now if you hear, "I've got 90 days of online dating free!”, be supportive because it could be you. We need to be loved, sure, but we also need to love being alone. In those moments, you'll find reasons to love you.

RELATED: I Tried Online Dating For One Week To Prove How Toxic Those Sites Are


Justin McClure is a filmmaker, photographer, digital marketer, content creator, creative director, and author of Pray Your Kids Are Ugly.