Gen Z daters are scared of rejection and being cringe, according to Hinge

Gen Z daters are scared of rejection and being cringe, according to Hinge

Gen Z daters are scared of rejection and being cringe, according to Hinge

iStockphoto by Getty Images

Ahead of Valentine's Day, Hinge has released its latest report on 2024’s biggest trends and dating habits among Gen Z, with insights from over 15,000 daters.

Most Hinge Gen Z daters (90 per cent) want to find love but have fearful worries about rejection which stand in the way of their quest for romance.

We're still seeing the impacts of the Covid pandemic, as Gen Z singletons are 47 per cent more likely than millennial daters to say the pandemic made them nervous talking to new people—and 25 per cent more likely to say the pandemic made them less confident on a first date.

Although Gen Z is the generation that is open to different types of relationships such as embracing non-monogamy, celebrating queer intimacy, and exploring gender identity, they are 30 per cent more likely than millennials to believe there’s one soulmate for each person and 39 per cent more likely to consider themselves romantically idealistic (have optimistic expectations)

The report also breaks down emerging trends such as embracing cringe mode, mastering digital body language and establishing the ‘What Are We’ (WAW) convo, here is everything you need to know along with advice from Hinge's Director of Relationship Science, Logan Ury, and Love & Connection Expert, Moe Ari Brown.

Embracing cringe mode

Gen Z need to embrace the cringe and build up their rejection resilience according to HingeiStockphoto by Getty Images

Around 44 per cent of Gen Z Hinge daters have little to dating experience and are worried about coming off as cringey or over-eager in their communication.

Rejection is a scary prospect, as 95 per cent of Hinge users are fearful of it and Gen Z feels it the worst.

Over half (56 per cent) of Gen Z Hinge daters say that worrying about rejection has held them back from pursuing a potential relationship—and they’re 10 per cent more likely than millennial daters to say they’ve missed the chance to be with someone because of it.

Hinge's Love and Connection Expert, Moe Ari Brown noted how most of us experience cringe, particularly when "going outside our comfort zones, doing something that requires vulnerability or risking rejection."

"The trick is acknowledging the feeling and accepting that you don’t need to be rid of it to date successfully. In reality, you need the presence of something much more deliberate, like courage, to push beyond your worry and show up vulnerably in your dating life."

Building our rejection resilience is also important as Brown outlined four key points of advice:

  1. Get clear on what you think about rejection - replace any harmful thoughts with new ones.
  2. Be compassionate with yourself and don’t blame yourself (or the other person).
  3. Don’t approach relationships with expectations. Instead, have standards.
  4. Shift from “pick me” to being “mutually choosy."

Mastering “DBL” (Digital Body Language)

Mastering your DBL is important when it comes to online datingiStockphoto by Getty Images

DBL is all about non-verbal subtexts such as emojis, punctuation, message length, and response time.

While a majority (77 per cent) of Hinge daters say a match’s DBL reveals a lot about their intentions, Gen Z Hinge daters are 50% more likely than millennials to try and play it cool by delaying their response to avoid seeming overeager.

Over half of Hinge daters (56 per cent) admit they’ve overanalyzed someone’s DBL, and here is some advice on ensuring you have good DBL:

  • Avoid confusion
  • Initiate conversation
  • Consistent messages - ask open questions
  • Reduce pre-date anxiety
  • Provide reassurance for both pre and post-dates.

Hinge's Director of Relationship Science, Logan Ury has also shared four tips on how to use DBL:

  1. Don’t assume that a lack of texting indicates a lack of interest
  2. Set expectations from the beginning
  3. Try positive reinforcement if you’re hoping to hear from someone more often
  4. Ask for smaller effort texts

The ‘What Are We’ (WAW) convo

Having the WAW talk is key to defining a relationshipiStockphoto by Getty Images

When it comes to DTR (Define The Relationship), 57 per cent of Gen Z daters are hesitant about having the 'What Are We' chat due to worries that it will turn off their romantic interest.

But if you're looking for relationship exclusivity, 73 per cent of Hinge daters believe it is a conversation that must be had.

Hinge's Director of Relationship Science, Logan Ury has established six things you need to know before having that all-important WAW talk.

  1. If someone doesn’t want to be with you, it’s better to know now
  2. There’s no perfect time to initiate it
  3. Have the conversation in person
  4. Clearly communicate what you want to know
  5. Understand that you may not receive the response you desire
  6. Keep in mind that how you handle the convo will impact your future relationship
You can read the Hinge report in full here.

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