Dating is complicated. Amidst dating app fatigue and contrasting advice from our friends to the strangers of Reddit on how to handle certain situations, we can barely trust ourselves to act like a human let alone our true selves. To make Millennial dating even more messy, new trends have come about, and they could be because of the technology that’s permeated our lives. It’s 2018, and the newest dating trends are much more complex, and savage, than ghosting. Here’s all the terminology you need to know.
The word is pretty much what it sounds like. If you leave a trail of breadcrumbs, chances are the birds are going to keep on following you because they’re expecting to get more of that baguette. In the case of us humans, it’s when someone gives you just enough, but not a lot, to keep you interested while also keeping you at arm’s length. They wouldn’t treat someone they actively wanted to pursue this way and they’d only do it if they’re confident you’re into them.
This is another term that lives up to its name. The first stage is getting ghosted by your crush and right when you think you’re over it, they try to bounce back into your life like nothing happened. They’ll either comment on your new Instagram post or slide into your DMs with the intentions of getting your hopes up only to let you down again.
With benching, you and multiple other people, will never know if you’re first string or second. The bencher is likely allergic to commitment, confused about what they want, and keeping their options open. They won’t be emotionally mature enough to let you know what they’re truly thinking, are pretty creative in coming up with excuses on why they can’t take you on a real date, but will still be friendly with you online.
If your SO refuses to put a label on your relationship or acts hot and cold towards you, you’re being stashed. They might be sweet to you when you’re in private but treat you like their cousin when you’re in public. Strangers scrolling through your SO’s social media wouldn’t know about your existence because they’d be careful not to post any photos of the two of you or give you any acknowledgment, really.
5. Catch and Release
We’ve probably all been guilty of buying something with the intention of returning it later on. You’ll want something for an event and can’t afford the price tag, so you’ll buy it only to return it once you’re done with it. In the case of dating, you’re the product that’s being returned. People who are obsessed with the chase will pursue you until they’ve caught you but will ultimately lose interest and resort to ghosting.
Someone who cushions is preparing for an inevitable breakup with their SO. While they may have been faithful and your relationship may have been great initially, once they realize things will probably end, they’ll start flirting with others and see what’s available in order to cushion their fall.
While similar to catfishing, kittenfishing is more of an exaggerated truth. If someone kittenfishes, they’d use the best photos of themselves on their dating profiles, even if it’s not how they look today. Whether they post a gym selfie from a few years back when they were in better shape or lie about their job or height, they’ll attempt to cover up their insecurities with exaggerations.
8. Love Bombing
Love bombing is essentially reverse catfishing. If you enter a new relationship with someone, the love bomber will shower you with attention and material gifts and develop the relationship at a fast pace. You’ll stay rooted in the honeymoon phase, and you’ll let your guard down so that you won’t notice any red flags. But their overwhelming affection is a red flag in itself. Later on, it could be a while later or shorter, they won’t be shy to hide their negative attributes, and they might just take it out on you.