75 First Dates

My Tinder Adventure

Safety vs. Convenience

Recently I stumbled across an article on IRL called “Privacy Settings High”  . It was written in answer to the question “Why would a girl be happy to meet up with me in public but not want to give out her phone number…seems fishy” (or something like that). Let me say this: I NEVER GIVE OUT MY PHONE NUMBER. Ever. And while in NYC, guys seem to understand that, in LA guys seem to take the lack of phone number as a personal insult.


Every Tinderbro’s reaction to not getting my number

While the article mentioned does bring up some great points (for example not wanting to get caught up in a texting relationship before establishing something real), it fails to acknowledge the key reason I don’t do it. Safety. See in our hyper-internet-focused world information is just a click away. I once went on a date with a guy who explained to me how using a person’s photo he could find out where they worked. Similarly giving someone your phone number gives them more information to track you with.

I was on tinder once and a fellow asked for my number (this happens all the time in LA). But when I declined he got offended and then decided that he could prove how much info he could get without my number. He did the photo search, found my name attached to my website. Used that to find info about the theater work I did in NYC and then started searching for my address. (He messaged me to tell me he was doing this and updated e each time he found a new piece of info). He found two of my last address where I had been registered to vote (as well as my Aunt’s Address), but thankfully they were all attached to the EMF’s apartments. “Yeah, if you go there” I wrote, “You are just gonna meet my ex-boyfriend, the lawyer. Good luck with that conversation.” I then reported him to Tinder (for breach of privacy and downright stalker-ish behavior) and he was removed from the site. The whole experience was mildly terrifying and I thanked god that I had been too lazy to update my voter registration. I can only imagine what else he could have figured out if he knew my phone number.


If you are thinking this, then you are correct. It is messed up. 

This was thankfully the only time a guy behaved in this way on a dating app. However, Tinderbros, ever inventive, made one more move that had me forever swearing off giving out my number. The dick-pic. Guys send these all the time. As far as I’m concerned, unrequested dick-pics are the new “flashing” for our generation. (Requested ones are of course different). However, my most impressive dick-pic happened this way. I had been texting with a guy from NJ who worked in downtown NYC, we had been flirty, and he had asked for my number. A day after exchanging digits I was at dinner and he sent me a dick pic, while my phone was sitting on the table…face up. And the table responded:


My host was all horrified elegance. 



“I’d tap that”. Said my gay guy friend sitting next to me. 


“I can’t believe he’s sending that”. Said my girlfriend sitting to my other side.



And I just sat there completely horrified but trying to keep it together. 

So after those two experiences I no longer give out my number to strangers on tinder or bumble. Further, I find it a really good indicator of how respectful a guy based on his reply to my text that I don’t feel safe giving out my number to strangers. Nice guys, tend to reply “oh, yeah, of course safety is the most important thing.” (Or something to that effect). Guys who push back on this small thing I find to be more concerned with their own convenience than a woman’s sense of safety. Those men are not with even a second glance. Safety should always trump convenience, and I don’t waste time with men who don’t understand that.



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